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Dark Circles & Dark Cycles

I can’t remember the last time I wrote something like this. June 4th was my last posting and that’s about the time it all went downhill.

I had the first panic attack I’ve had in over a year and a half a week or so ago. I was in a dark place. But I scraped by.

It felt like I was starting over. It still does. Each day, I feel the symptoms I had as a little kid: upset stomach- the awful pit that got me out of gym class one too many times, the headaches, the dizziness. And that’s just the anxiety symptoms.

The thing that sucks about having an anxiety disorder but also suffering from depression is that they do NOT go well together.

Anxiety: “Michelle, you have 500 things to do today. Better get up and do them.”
Depression: “Remember all those things you love doing? Well, you don’t love them anymore. Stay in bed.”

The cycle continues.

I haven’t been able to sleep. The occasional melatonin tablet (don’t take 2 and only sleep 5 hours. Lesson learned), the occasional but increasingly frequent glass of wine, and whatever else it takes has not helped me sleep any better. I have a FitBit now and it has only made me see hard data for me not sleeping well. I used to think I got 8 hours of sleep every night. I’m lucky if I get 6 or 7 most nights. I’m restless throughout the night. Honestly, I’m restless all the time. I’m restless as I write this.

I’m trying to get better. I’m trying to BE better. I have my knowledge and strategies. I have my support. The battle is still being fought each second of each day. I know I am stronger than this. I have proved that time and time again. But I feel weak and tired and feeling impatient.

Forever hiding my dark cycles behind my dark circles.

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Dark Cloud

It starts with darkness.

You never really understand the dark cloud analogy unless you live it. Feel it. Breathe it. Become it.

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Confessions of a Former Size Zero

Technology is a beautiful thing. There are so many apps nowadays and built-in features on Facebook that remind you of what you were doing “on this day ___ years ago.”

I love it. TimeHop, for example, reminds me of all the “deep” quotes I used as Facebook statuses way back when. Facebook reminds me awkwardly of pictures with ex-boyfriends I thought I had deleted.

I also hate it. Because it reminds me of what I used to look like.

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Chicken Soup For the Anxiety-Ridden Soul

Well hello blog, it’s been a while.

Have you ever had a moment where you are laying on your bed, staring at the ceiling, and suddenly it feels as if the walls are caving in on you? You feel a tightness in your chest and your breathing becomes difficult. In other words, they are my precursors to a full blown panic attack (which I have not had in nearly a year).

When I visited my doctor last Wednesday, he was proud of the progress I have made. He says I am cognitively aware of what is making me anxious lately and that is important.

Us anxiety-ridden folk are wired differently than the average human. Here are a few things I have had on my mind:

  1. I hate myself.
  2. Well, I’m proud of the person I am, but I hate the way I look.
  3. Maybe I’ll never find someone who will understand me like I will need them to.
  4. Grownup dating sucks.
  5. I hate dating.
  6. Maybe I’ll give up dating for a while.
  7. Maybe I’ll be alone forever.
  8. I need to exercise
  9. I don’t have time to exercise
  10. Does running away from my feelings count as exercise?
  11. Or running away from my thoughts?
  12. Why can’t I sleep at night
  13. I need sleep.
  14. Work is exhausting
  15. I love my job though
  16. But I need to go back to school
  17. School is going to cost money
  18. I don’t have money
  19. My car has problems
  20. I have to pay for bills and insurance
  21. And my credit card bill makes me want to cry.
  22. Maybe I’ll be broke forever between bills, school, and student loans.
  23. Maybe I’ll volunteer to take my mind off school
  24. Volunteering is taking up all of my spare time
  25. What is spare time?
  26. I don’t have enough time to spend with my mom
  27. What if something happens to my mom just months after my dad passed away?
  28. I’m not ready to face that.
  29. I miss my dad and wish he was here for me to talk to
  30. Especially about things like my check engine light
  31. Or just here to give me a hug when I feel like my world is breaking down.
  32. I can’t breathe.
  33. I have so many things to do and I am behind in all of them
  34. And it’s the summer. Aren’t I supposed to enjoy my summer?
  35. I still can’t breathe.
  36. Okay, maybe I’ll smoke a cigarello to make me feel better.
  37. My doctor says that’s avoidance so it probably won’t help with anything
  38. I shouldn’t start smoking.
  39. I’m crying.
  40. I feel alone.
  41. I don’t know what to do with my life
  42. Or with myself
  43. Maybe laying on the floor will help
  44. My heart is racing
  45. Breathe in… breathe out.
  46. I have emails to check.
  47. I should make a to-do list.
  48. And check my agenda.
  49. I forgot to breathe.
  50. Breathe in…breathe out.

And this is only to name a few. Writing out my thoughts often help and I hate that I have stopped to take the time to do so either here or in my journal. Life isn’t easy. Growing up isn’t easy. And I am in one of the biggest transitional periods of my life. It is okay to stop and take a day or a moment just for me. It’s okay to say no to certain situations. It’s okay to feel anxious. This feeling won’t last forever.

9pm Confessions

The funny thing about depression is that it consumes you.

I lied. It’s really not that funny.

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I Haven’t Been This Scared In a Long Time

I haven’t had a panic attack in months. I can’t remember the last time I had one. Maybe it’s not something I like to keep track of, so how would I remember?

All I know is I feel like I’m having a small one now. And it’s scary and it’s frightening. It consumes me.

I have tried everything: my breathing techniques, closing my eyes, counting to ten, looking at my peripheries in the mirror, talking to a friend, changing the subject, you name it.

I’m shaking and my heartbeat echoes in my head. My first tear just broke and I’m stumbling to catch my breath again. I’m writing this in hopes that it helps: that it forces me to focus on typing rather than break down into a million pieces.

School is the trigger this time around. It’s that time of year where I have a midterm, an essay, and two assignments due this week. I need to do well on this upcoming midterm because I did poorly on the last one. I need to do well on my essay because I am doing so well otherwise in the course. I need my marks to be good so I can go to grad school in the future. I don’t know what my future holds and the uncertainty is consuming me from the inside out.

All I want to do is cry. A good cry would help me right now. Instead, I feel numb. I feel emotionless. My vision is spotty and I want to just fall asleep. Just for a few minutes. But I can’t. When I rest my head, the panic sets in again. I have too much to do. I need to get some work done before my meeting tonight. I feel like I have chosen to allocate my time in the wrong ways. Last night I went out to the bar. I justified it by saying I wouldn’t realistically get much work done after 11pm anyways, so I might as well go out with friends. When I say it out loud, the reasoning seems sound. When I sit here right now, my body shakes at the thought of wasting my time.

I feel so weak. I have come such a long way since my battle with PD started. Am I just losing all over again? Maybe the battle was not even won in the first place.

 

Today’s blog title is inspired by “Going Away to College” – Blink-182

The Shadow

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I like to think the battle is over. I feel the weight of the world lifted from my shoulders.

Unfortunately, it’s only for a minute. Maybe an hour until I feel the pressure come back.

My thoughts are constantly restless. There is always something I’m thinking about. My mind is always anxious.

Dictionary.com defines anxiety as: “distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear of danger or misfortune.”

I don’t feel danger exactly. I fear what every basic fear boils down to: the unknown.

I hate not knowing things. I hate empty feelings. I hate the feeling I get in my chest. I hate the shadow.

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Just don’t let me disappear, I’ma tell you everything.

These are the thoughts that never end. And they go on and on, my friends. Somebody starting thinking them, not knowing what it was, and they’ll continue thinking them forever just because these are the thoughts that never end.

It’s fun to see what children’s songs can be turned into. Simple words. Easy melody. Many variations.

My thoughts are that exactly. Simple words. An easy melody. Many variations.

Sometimes they don’t feel so simple. What’s on today’s agenda? Mother’s Day.

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Embracing Authenticity

"Don't be ashamed of your story it will inspire others!"

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“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” — Maya Angelou

Lonely Blue Boy

The Boy Who Cries Wolf

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Feel the fear and do it anyway...