ON EDGE

I’m sick so here is a older post. Hopefully I will be well by next week to write a new post.

     Anxiety comes in different forms for people. Some can’t breathe; some feel like they are having a heart attack. Some have tightening of muscles, some become dizzy, and some get cold or sweaty hands and/or feet.

     For me, it comes like a rare flu I can’t get rid of. I become nauseated, I dry heave and sometimes I’m over the toilet.

     I first experienced this anxiety attack in college while I was being abused by a friend. I woke up each morning feeling sick, I could hardly keep food down and during the day I would dry heave. Sometimes I’d dry heave until I got sick. I’d be fine one minute and sick the next. A doctor gave me anti-nausea medication and it did little to ease my stomach.

     When the abuse ended, the anxiety attacks went away for several years. They came back suddenly, without warning. My life was going well. I had married a wonderful man, I worked at a good job, and I had been in recovery from my mental illness for several years.

     I had a doctor run several tests to rule out health problems. I couldn’t believe I was having anxiety attacks at such a good time in my life. The doctor found that I was healthy, and he put me on xanax. The nausea went away as long as I remember to take my medication.

     In therapy I was able to point out different things in my life that caused stress: things like worrying about finances, work, taking care of my home and health problems. My therapist and I started working on ways to take control of my worries and to relax. My husband’s Uncle Richard Gross, a clinical psychologist, gave me a relaxation tape which helped calm my nerves.

     My psychiatrist told me many people with depression have anxiety. He said the illnesses are different and they were not the result of having one or the other. It’s just one of those things that seem to go together.

     With the help of medication, relaxation techniques, and therapy, I keep my anxiety attacks under control. There are times they get the best of me, but I know I can stand up to them. I have a wonderful husband who reminds me when I’m worrying too much. It helps to have a friend or family member to share my problems with. Having someone to remind me to relax or to help me calm down is important.

     With relaxation techniques, my support team and medication I stand in the light of recovery facing my anxiety with strength.

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