Anxiety Baby and the Ballet

My worry is dancing the ballet with intrusive thoughts that are louder than any orchestra and my anxiety adds an auditoriums worth of applause to the performance. I happen to be front row center for all this and this room in my mind was built by the ancient chemical architects to prevent escape. FUH!

To further the visualizations, my anxiety is like a third term baby whose ready to get the hell out of there. My anxiety IS primarily stationed in my stomach after all and like a baby would kick, my anxiety will give me a few seconds, minutes or maybe hours if I’m distracted and then BAM! Unfortunately, the ‘anxiety baby’ is ruthless and not cute at all.

I’m SO bothered by all these obsessive and intrusive thoughts and associated feelings that I’m ready to sit down and do cognitive behavioral therapy thought logs and LORD KNOWS those are time and energy-consuming. I feel like I’ve run an emotional marathon every time I complete one. It’s not that I wouldn’t recommend them especially to my patients one day when I have my own practice. I think CBT is awesome and so is group and individual therapy, but with CBT, it’s a lot easier to work with a professional on your side than being alone on the other end of the finish line. At the end of the day the superobjective is not to need validation from someone else, but it sure helps especially when you’re in an emotional construction zone.

I’m even so disturbed by the obsessive thoughts this past week and a half that I’m thinking I may need to up my Luvox dosage. Of course, that would require me a psychiatrist. I’m coming to accept there is NO ONE I would not be able to see without taking time off for work for and that’s not even an option. There is a non-profit organization in my city my doctor told me about he wants me to get on the waiting list for, I’ll have to wait until Monday to make a call, and I dread that sort of thing, even though it NEEDS to be done.

Kind of a funny off-note…I got a text from someone I dogsit for and I was so disturbed by having to reply and be a reasonable human being that I inwardly said, “NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!” and then mumbled under my breath and got it over with. GOD, social interactions. DUMB.

Going back to what I was saying, I took Thursday and Friday off unpaid for being sick as all hell and attendance is a HUGE deal at the organization I work for. My doctor wrote me a note when I saw him (and he gave me antibiotics to hopefully kill off all this crap inside of me) that said I should stay home until Wednesday the 21st which I would LOVE to utilize, but I am feeling a LITTLE better, and I don’t want to cause problems at work. Then again, it’s like I can’t enjoy my rest time now because I’m anxious about having to get back to work. And I honestly like my job, even though I may not like all my co-workers’ attitudes…but those first few hours of being awake every day particularly when I’m sick and up early are hell on earth and just thinking about them makes me want to throw up all over (which, I did this morning!).

The other intrusive thoughts are so aggravating that I’m going to let them bathe in the sludge of paranoia and worry and anxiety in my stomach right now and not address them. F them. F obsessive compulsive disorder. F unnecessary guilt and F Sundays. I e-mailed one of the supervisors and send her the letter from the doctor and asked her opinion as to how dire it is they’ll need me Monday or if I can stay home at least one or two more days. Rest has been helping me SO MUCH. I run myself ragged now that I’m working and school has started. I’m already immune compromised to begin with, and I was so sick last week I was thinking maybe I should quit my job because obviously I can’t avoid this constant sickness…I’m just frustrated though I think.

I’ve done all I can do to keep calm this weekend. I’ve played casual games on my tablet and computer, I’ve slept as much as I can, I’ve taken all my medicines on time and practiced deep breathing. I’ve journaled mundane daily events and completed my homework so well it’ll sparkle to whoever reads it. I’m proud of those things. I just hope I can get through today without having ‘anxiety baby’ aerobics every few minutes/hours.

On another off-note before we finish up here, my university lab group is going to do our study on perceptions of OCD. My individualized section will be focused on intrusive thoughts, something people don’t normally consider nor understand in a general populace. Or maybe they do know! We’ll find out who knows what when we run our experiment.

ENJOY THE REST OF YOUR WEEKEND FELLOW BLOGGERS!

19 thoughts on “Anxiety Baby and the Ballet

  1. In my own experience, it does seem like intrusive thoughts are NOT really known by the general public. I’ve had to explain it to most people I’ve shared OCD info with. I’ll be curious about your study. 🙂

    • I will make sure to keep you updated! We still have a lit review and to create the experiment before we actually run it but if you’re still interested by the time it’s done I’m all over getting you informed!

  2. I think this is a case where i can actually call somebody else’s baby “ugly”- ha. I grew up with severe OCD- I don’t still hop over sidewalk cracks (and count in sets of two’s and three’s in my head, or “speed think” and have mad cyclic thinking) but I DO still have many of my OCD tendencies “in thought”. it’s a brain thing, eh? It never really goes away altogether. Thankfully, I don’t have full-blown anxiety issues (I’ve graduated from minor anxiety to major bitch) but hey- at least I’m not anxious! 🙂

    I want to point out that your writing has grown impressively stronger. You’re sounding like a therapist! I think college stress can explain away MUCH of our problems. Cut yourself some slack- stress can be blamed for much of your anxiety.

    Your job sounds awesome, by the way. Keep that sucker (if you can)! And, are you going straight into your Master’s this fall, or are you going to take a semester off or two off? (I’ll be ready to start my Master’s in Clinical by the fall of ’16. Woot!) Off to take an exam- hope you get to feeling better soon! x

    • Getting compliments especially from you who I’ve been back and forth with for a long time now is an extra exciting feeling 🙂 I think I’m going to try to hop into my Master’s after a semester off studying where I want to go and what I want to specialize in. One thing they DON’T tell you about is what the hell you’d be doing in grad school (in undergrad I mean).
      I’m probably the best damn teacher at the entire institution whose in my position at least so I don’t think they’d want to fire me. I got the “o-k” to stay home tomorrow if need be but I’m welcome to come into work as well. That takes off a LITTLE stress. My mom of course is like “YOU’RE GONNA LOSE THE JOB IF YOU TAKE TOMORROW OFF” even after I told her what the supervisor said. Which makes me anxious all over again…

      MUAH! I hope to grow into being a major bitch and kicking the anxiety at some point in my life. 😛

      • Haha…well, I had to get quite aggressive with my disorder/s at some point and really scream and yell and kick it in the teeth. (One day I was lying on my couch- lost in depression- when I said, “I refuse to give this depression one more day of my life. I reject this!” And I got good and pissed off- it was a real WAR. I was tired of living my life defeated! So, yeah, to some degree the major beeyatch kicked in, but at the same time, it saved my life. That was the end of my depression and anxiety/compulsions, etc. I’ve been in charge ever since.

        I’m so totally excited for you to be finally (almost) moving on to your Master’s. That’s HUGE! As we’ve discussed before, people really don’t know what’s it’s like for people like US to be walking through the fire- day in, day out- but we do. We’re “fire walkers” as I like to call it., because we’ve learned to walk on the blistering hot coals of our disorders and triumph over them. I know some days don’t feel like much of a “triumph”, but don’t you ever forget that you’re a warrior. You- getting your degree in psychology (and me too) is equivalent to somebody who is deathly afraid of heights getting their pilots license.

        So yeah, hang in there and keep on fighting! You’re winning. 🙂

      • When I was teaching, I used to obsess so much about taking a day off for sickness, that I made myself even more ill. Finally, I realized that my VERY limited absences did not constitute any real threat to the important and meaningful work that I was doing there. That insight helped me to figure out that I didn’t need to trash myself for not being super-human. I knew that, whenever I was present, I held myself to a high standard of integrity, and took my responsibilities seriously. Be kind to yourself by taking good care of yourself!

  3. I love the metaphors you use! Very creative! A strategy I taught myself to fend of fear & dread is to “Do it NOW!” and to “Do it afraid!” Procrastination is my enemy, whose mission is to thwart my unique purpose, and yours. Also, after years of medication trial and error, I’ve found that Depakote and an antidepressant help to keep me on an even keel, so that I can actually accomplish things. Hope this helps! Keep blogging!

    • “Do it afraid” is a really interesting concept. I haven’t even though of anything like that before. I’m going to use that as a motivator this week and see how it goes I think! Thank you 🙂 And Depakote wasn’t the best for me, Lamictal is great, I just may need a milligram change.

      • One thing that I’ve always insisted on with my doctors is: the lowest dose available. I am 5’5″ tall and 130 pounds, so heavy dosages of meds aren’t for me. I’d rather a lighter dose of medication “take the edge off,” rather than having it slow me into a stupor. That way, I also hold myself accountable to take positive action steps as we’ll (counseling, studying, interacting, DO-ing things). Hope this helps! You are so creative!

      • I think that’s a great idea because in a worst case scenario especially you want to be as low as you can so if you NEED to go up…you’re not maxed out and need to try something else. And thank you!!!

      • I was also careful to report side effects when trying a new medication. My reasoning was that, over the long haul, noticeable side effects could be of real concern. (Another reason for the lowest dose, whenever possible.) In using this approach, I was holding myself accountable to also take cognitive behavioral steps, to assist in my goal of more effective, and actually enjoyable, functioning.

    • Great insight! While there are common threads and loads of research about most of this stuff, we are not chem projects. Certain meds work for some of us not for others. certain coping skills work for some of us. It’s nice to have a non judgmental forum to share.

      I listen to the way I express myself when I am down vs. when I am feeling good. it’s like a different person! Advice is only good if the person for whom it is intended for is in a place to accept it. We can actually do harm by offering advice when compassion is needed.

      There is a great deal of knowledge here and some interesting points of view. Glad I was invited.

  4. Thanks for the “like” on Part 8… Levodopa. I know what you mean about answering a text or anything needing a reply. I get so caught up in wanting to sound normal that I trick myself and then nothing will ever sound normal.

  5. Wow! Such honesty, such eloquence, and such compassion!

    I have heard “Do it Afraid” before. If the alternative is retreating and feeling terrible, the I think it is better to take the plunge if you have prepared for the event. Fear is consuming isn’t it.

    Krissy, please do not quit your job! Your performance is more than adequate. I am sure that 60 percent of your full capacity is better than most of the other workers 90 percent. If you like going there keep doing it. Leave when you find something better to do. As for your performance evaluations, leave that to the bosses. It’s all about the doing. Doing good work, being present. If you are present for a good chunk of time at work, it is as good for you as for the clients you serve. You don’t have to be the best. You just have to be good enough, and you are good enough just walking in the door.

    If you are sick, you are SICK!!! Please don’t beat yourself up. Take any preventative measures you can to take care of your self and move on. Rest, vitamins, a brisk walk every day…….

    My daughter has a weak immune system as well. I think stress plays a factor. We share genes are are more similar than I previously believed. I was able to improve my immune system through exercise, diet, improved preventative hygiene, vitamins etc….. I don’t get sick as often. When I go into a depressive trough, I tend to get sick.

    CBT is exhausting. I think you should try, and if it’s not happening at the moment put it down and come back to it later. If you are not in a place to look at the situation objectively I don’t really see the point. The info gathered is so much more meaningful when we arrive at it on our own. AS IF I JUST SAID SOMETHING YOU DON’T ALREADY KNOW. The caps are for me, to remind myself that it is ok to remind someone of what they already know, that it is not patronizing if done with a good heart.

    In closing, I read this morning that their are two scriptures. The Earth, and the Bible. The Earth is God’s work as well and it is beautiful. Aren’t we all so lucky to be here with our loved ones, our friends, lour issues? I trust you will figure this all out. If I was a praying man, I would pray for you. I’m not, but I send as much good karma and peace as I can your way.

    You are good enough just walking through the door.

    PEACE!

  6. Remember, Child of God, when you are ill (colds, la grippe and other such nasty little buggies) you can be contagious. Make all the other staff at your beloved workplace (despite the attitudes) as well as the poor tykes running around and looking for a safe haven there?

    Pish!

    Take care of yourself. Doctors may not always know best, but when they make a nice decision like ‘Stay home until Wednesday’, take that advice! Get well, follow those fantastic suggestions Robshare made about strengthening yourself physically as you do all these wonderful things to make yourself mentally well.

    I certainly identify with those intrusive thoughts – and the procrastination to respond, to deal with people – like having to climb a mountain. All here who acknowledge it, know that doing it – Scared, Now, in your pyjamas, just DO IT! is the answer (Yay, Nike). If only we could all do just that. We might end up being so well, we’d have nothing to blog about, lol.

    Thanks for the follow and I am truly looking forward to sharing your journey further.

  7. Outstanding writing, an opening of the soul to share with cyber strangers. I too suffer from anxiety, depression and like a bud afraid to open my thoughts to the world…at 75 I continue to struggle with life. My current problems have brought about a sense of urgency to take control. I admire you and look forward to future entries. eajm

    • I really hope you can find yourself even a little peace daily. I’ll check back in on your blog very soon. I stopped in to vent my fears about something that happened this week and have an assignment for school due tomorrow I have 2 hours left to work on…I really appreciate what you said about me and my writing though and I hope that we can be new cyber friends.

  8. I can definitely relate to intrusive thoughts and anxiety. I live with them every day. It really fatigues me so I try to get some rest every dayI hope you are able to find some peace time throughout your day. Keep yourself grounded during this period. It will help you negotiate all you are dealing with.

    • I’ve been working on it, just need to remind myself the day after about the peace I had the day before in order to get a moment of MORE peace, because no peace lasts that long.

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