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Living with anxiety is not a fun thing. I would not wish anxiety or depression on my worst enemies. It can be a vicious thing. It creates vicious circles that keep feeding itself over and over again.
For me, most of my anxiety is the result of my body, my stomach, and its unpredictability. It is something I have faced for a long, long time. As long as I can remember now. It’s hard to remember a time when I didn’t have it. I am still living with it now, even with my health improving. This blog is not just about how far I’ve come, but in my continuous journey to finding better health and better life.
One of the hard things about having a stomach that you can not control you don’t want to be in a car for an extended amount of time. Which also means you don’t want to be in the car with other people at the same time. As you don’t want them around you when things go poorly for you. For me, I prefer being alone when it happens. I wouldn’t want someone to see it happen, or me loose myself, or worse. I prefer it to be my me. I can stop if I need to, I can do my own thing. But when it has to happen, where someone needs to be with you for whatever reason, your brain and you go into overdrive.
It’s such a simple thing, riding in the car with others. Yet for one that has anxiety, panic attacks, it becomes one of the hardest things ever for them to do.
Today was just such a case. I was going out to the store to pick up groceries, and was taking a friend of a friend with me. Naturally I was nervous and anxious at this idea. But I needed to power through it and work through it, if I ever want to live a better life. They say to conquer fear one needs to confront it head on. I’ve never been a fan of that approach. Guess I’ve always been too scared to I guess. I have been forcing myself out more and more lately. It is helping. Still a long ways to go.
I am happy to report I was able to go out there to the store with no issues. I even stopped to talk to someone that liked my Zelda shirt I was wearing. Did I mention I am huge nerd?
Today was a good day. Another triumph for me. Here’s to many more.
That is the question I have asked myself over and over and over again over the years. What do you do when your stomach doesn’t work properly and nothing seems to help it work better? When you see doctor after doctor and they can not help you, and others tell you it’s all in your head. It’s all in your head, one of the worst things to hear, when you go through things, or when you have anxiety. It cuts so deep. Maybe on some level it maybe true, but it’s not the words you want to hear. You want people to believe you, and support you. Not make you feel like a loon that is bonkers. My other favorite, just do it this one time. Go out this one time. Do it this one time, as if there is a giant switch that I can flip to make myself “normal” for the night. I guess they don’t think to themselves, had their had been a switch, I would have broken it into the on position long ago.
The most frustrating thing of it all is when you can not get any answers so you can not really get any help. All you can do is just take this pill, or take that pill, or take this other pill. Maybe if we up the dosage of the first pill it will work. What the pill doesn’t make you feel good, well it’s just you. The pill doesn’t do that… Yes, that is sadly a true experience. I’ve had multiple tests, I’ve had things shoved in places they probably shouldn’t be shoved in. And even worse, after they shove it in, they never call you the next day. It’s like wam, bam, thank you ma’am. Typical. I was never diagnosed with anything. I had symptoms that are similar to many things. I knew someone with Crohn’s and we were similar with what we go through. Yet, I never got that diagnosis. Never got told I had colitis. After many more pills, they were going to do a third colonoscopy, I guess the first two were so much fun for me, that they wanted to do it third time… Before I would decide to either live with it, accept there is nothing I can do about it, or take things into my own hands.
What exactly is a “body that doesn’t work?” (This part will be a little graphic and you may not want to read it. I am putting it in for those that have also gone through it, or may one day. ) Well for me for my entire life, I suffered when I would eat foods. Foods would cause terrible bloat, give me gas, and send me to the bathroom multiple times in a day. Sometimes with return trips after just leaving the bathroom. So imagine living like that and then being out places. Where you are wondering where all the bathrooms are and will there be enough time to make it to the bathroom. Not wanting to be in the car for extended amounts of time because it takes you away from the bathroom if you needed to be. Which is now creating and giving you anxiety about how your stomach will be, and what happens when you are somewhere not home or near the bathroom. Eventually agoraphobia starts to kick in and you don’t want to be anywhere. If you are in the car you don’t want anyone in the car with you. In case something were to happen and you couldn’t make it to the bathroom in time. Being there is full of anxiety, so much so, where the idea of being somewhere causes you to be sick to your stomach and gets you throwing up. It would cause full blown panic attacks. Needless to say all types of relationships suffer from it. From personal romantic ones, to family relationships, where you start to miss out on all family functions and events. Sadly, I have missed many family events because of the way my body works.
So back to where I started, what do you do, when your body doesn’t work? To me there was nothing that I wouldn’t do, or try. Desperation starts to kick in, and you will do what you must. I have tried many, many things over the years. I’ve talked to countless doctors, tried even more pills than I could imagine. I prayed, oh boy, did I pray. That I would be lucky and fortunate to have a miracle occur and my body would be miraculously cured. And I could be “normal” like everyone else.
Then one day, this past Summer when I was so low, a place some call the dark night of the soul, I would decide this was it. I had had enough of living like this. I wanted more out of my life. I wanted to make something of my life. I wanted to live life. I wanted to love life. Up until this point I was starting to hate life. And hate myself. I would decide it was time to make changes to my life. Make changes to me. I had ballooned up to 255 pounds. I had sleep apnea, heartburn, suffered from terrible headaches, had no energy, could barely get up in the morning, and was having difficulty breathing fully at time. The only way to get anywhere was to change my life. Everything about my life. And that is exactly what I did.
I changed my life. More on that in a later post.
This blog is about my journey of self healing, self discovery, and my road to loving life so I can live life.
The backstory of how this all came about, is from my own journey that I embarked on, back in June of 2015. My whole life up until that point, Had been a crazy ride of health issues, that had made life difficult for me. These health issues, while maybe not as serious as some, were still things that left me in a shambled and broken mess at times. I had gained weight, and had been at the heaviest I ever had been. I had breathing issues, constant and terrible heartburn, sleep apnea, and couldn’t even lay on my back, without sounding like I couldn’t breathe. These stomach issues were an non diagnosed stomach issue, that a lot of the time revolved around foods. The most diagnosis that I ever received was IBS. (Irritable Bowel.) That was after two colonoscopies, and lots of doctors visits over the years. This put me on many pills over the years, that did not help me with anything, but make my well being diminish. Living like this, caused me to develop a lot of anxiety, as well as borderline agoraphobia. (The fear of going places.) It even wrecked relationships as it can be taxing for someone when they want to go places, and you can’t because of health issues, and the anxiety/fear that came with it.
Long story short, I will speak more on it on the blog, I started to take my health into my own hands, and that is what this blog is about. The things that have helped me get my life turned around, and my journey to being able to finally be happy in life, and able to live life. This blog will also be me sharing experiences, and things that have helped me, and maybe might help you as well. I am no doctor, I am not a nutritionist, I am not even a writer. I think I actually failed English class in 11th and 12th grade. I have a great sense of humor, it has helped keep me sane over the years.
I am not 100%, and I may never be, I still struggle with anxiety, and still have fears and worries about going out places, and that is what this is about. Sharing my experiences while I continue this journey. It just started, and I am excited to see where it will take me.