No Stranger to Anxiety

I’ve been an anxious person for most of my adult life. Everyday things stress me out more than they should and I am always worried about something. Anything really. People are always telling me to relax — from my close family members, to acquaintances to strangers who recognize the angst on my face.

Lately, my anxiety has risen to new levels. Nothing seems to go right and I always feel like I can’t breathe. Ever since we’ve started with this new therapy I feel like I am on the verge of having a nervous breakdown. It’s not good. I realize this. But I don’t know how to stop it. I’m on edge and I just want it to stop.

My anxious nature has been the topic of discussion around here over the past few weeks. Marsall wishes “she would just calm down about everything.” I’m stressing Aidan out with my short fuse. Regina pointed out to me that I’m slowly going back to avoiding things and putting them off until later, which was something I did for years and years.

I brought it up in therapy yesterday morning because I need help. I can’t stand feeling like this. I’m always on edge, like everything is going or will go wrong, like the feeling that I have a million important things to do but can’t remember any of them. Our therapist didn’t offer much advice. She said it’s because we are making big changes and it is scary and hard. She said we have to get through it for things to get better. I agree with the why but what if they don’t get better? What if I just get worse and become stuck here in Anxiety-ville?

I haven’t had this level of anxiety in years. I know it’s because of therapy. Changes are hard but somehow I have talked about and have been reminded so much about the past that I feel like I am back there. Trapped there. It’s awful. It’s not fair to Aidan either. For me to be constantly worked up based on things that were happening 5-15 years ago in my life. I don’t want to be there. I don’t want to think about it anymore. My life sucked then, it doesn’t now. My life is awesome now, aside from this anxiety and these big kids acting up. I just want to bury my head in the sand, but I know that won’t help anything or anyone. Why can’t I just happily bask in the now?

I’m just going to keep pushing through it. I guess it will make me or break me. Of course I want it to make me a stronger mother. One who won’t tolerate shit. I’ve got to find a way to get rid of these disturbing feelings though. The ones that make minor nuisances feel like the whole universe is falling down around me. I’m going to keep writing and I’ll keep making my lists. I’ll do the things that need to be done so I have less to feel stressed over. I’ll keep being firm and know that it will have results. The results I want as opposed to the results the big kids want.

And just in case you are wondering what types of things get me worked up to the point where I feel like I’m drowning here are some examples of what got to me in the past 24 hours:

  • My laptop wanted to run updates and did so despite me clicking “later.”
  • I took a mug out of the cabinet that my ex-husband bought me years ago
  • Marshall asked multiple times where Aidan was sitting at the dinner table last night
  • I couldn’t find a puzzle piece for one of Henry’s puzzles
  • There is a glob of something on the kitchen floor
  • The spaghetti sauce I was cooking last night spurted all over the stove
  • I couldn’t easily put cheese onto the garlic bread because it was too far back in the toaster
  • One of the therapists arrived a few minutes late and didn’t close the door when she came in
  • There are finger prints on the windows
  • I have phone calls to make

These are all ridiculous things to worry about, to be annoyed to the point that they are still bothering me, and none of them are worth the level of stress I feel about any of them. I realize that. I just can’t make it go away. And it stresses me out all the more.

Ugh. I feel really shitty and I just want to feel normal.

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