No matter how small

This post isn’t really about me. I mean in a way it is It is about every single one of us. Every single person who battles a mental illness. Every single day we get up and fight a battle with mental health. We are stronger than we imagine. Every single day, we make progress.

I admit I have been guilty of feeling like a failure if I haven’t made big enough progress. Like when I’m not less anxious than the day before. Maybe yesterday I had a panic attack and today I didn’t. Although that doesn’t feel like a lot of progress to me…it is still progress. It is a step forward to controlling my anxiety disorder.

I feel like we need that reminder. We live in a world where having any sort of mental illness is extremely frowned upon. A world where seeking help means you’re crazy and you need to be locked away. I know I feel ashamed telling anyone that I suffer from anxiety disorder because they think I am either being shy or naive. In this stigma filled world, I feel that we need to remind each other that progress is still progress, no matter how small. I feel that we all need to encourage one another.

So, if you are reading this. You are enough. Your progress is beautiful. Your progress is still progress. Keep your head up. You are not alone

#Lyric time…Unwell by Matchbox 20

Sometimes there are those songs that literally speak to our anxious minds and this just so happens to be one of them. In my true fashion…I will Post the lyrics in bold and my thought in normal text… If this song speaks to you let me know.

Unwell by Matchbox 20 (April, 2003)

All day staring at the ceiling
Making friends with shadows on my wall
All night hearing voices telling me
That I should get some sleep
Because tomorrow might be good for something
But sometimes I can’t sleep because my anxiety keeps me up late at night… thinking about things that maybe I should have done or what I did do and how I could have done it differently.
Hold on
Feeling like I’m headed for a breakdown
And I don’t know why
I don’t know why I feel bad sometimes. I get emotional and worked up. and feel like I am going to have a break down.
But I’m not crazy, I’m just a little unwell
I am not crazy. I feel that people look at me for having anxiety as if I am crazy. I am not. I just cannot control my anxious brain sometimes. It groups safe and unsafe things and puts it all into a singular group of unsafe.
I know right now you can’t tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you’ll see
A different side of me
I’m not crazy, I’m just a little impaired
I know right now you don’t care
But soon enough you’re gonna think of me
And how I used to be, me
I’m talking to myself in public
Unfortunately, I have talked to myself in public… but not in the I am crazy way. but in a way that is kind of like a person slams on their brakes…why are you riding your brakes car. Or I hate bees… I’ll be sitting in the car with the window down and a bee will come in.. then I will scream say I hate bees and probably jump out of the car.
Dodging glances on the train
I don’t like to look at people because I feel like they will think I am staring
And I know, I know they’ve all been talking about me
With anxiety, you fear that everyone is always talking about you.
I can hear them whisper
And it makes me think there must be something wrong with me
Is there something wrong with me?
Out of all the hours thinking
Somehow I’ve lost my mind
But I’m not crazy, I’m just a little unwell
I know right now you can’t tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you’ll see
A different side of me
I’m not crazy, I’m just a little impaired
I know right now you don’t care
But soon enough you’re gonna think of me
And how I used to be
I’ve been talking in my sleep
Yeah I know I talk in my sleep but I am kind of afraid of what I might say in said sleep
Pretty soon they’ll come to get me
Yeah, they’re taking me away
But I’m not crazy, I’m just a little unwell
I know right now you can’t tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you’ll see
A different side of me
I’m not crazy, I’m just a little impaired
I know right now you don’t care
But soon enough you’re gonna think of me
And how I used to be
Hey, how I used to be
How I used to be
Well, I’m just a little unwell
How I used to be
How I used to be
I’m just a little unwell
This song is really good.  take a listen at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WziA88-n02k

What is #Anxiety???

c54c1cb9782a3f556de532aa3c255fab--social-anxiety-mental-illness

This is possibly the most accurate description of what feeling like anxiety is like. Unfortunately, I have this feeling at least 98% of the day.

What is funny is that when the seat belt locks up on me.. I literally freak out. Pulling on it trying to get free, getting frustrated and angry.

efa7bb6dd50112019e06736415213a96--anxiety-help-anxiety-quotes-stress

Overthinking is a big part of my anxiety. It is also why I can’t sleep. So I figured if I am going to have a blog that deals with anxiety I might as well be brutally honest right? So here we go.

Second Guess everything.

Did I run that stop light? Did I do a rolling stop? OMG is that cop going to do a U turn and pull me over? Is the chicken completely done? Did I show my daughters enough love today? Did I give them enough boundaries? Did I hurt my mom’s feelings with that comment? Should I have said that? Second guessing is like second nature to me. I pretty much think I don’t do anything right so I have to double check. Because well I just suck.

Analyze things to death

Yeah.. that part about me sucking comes from analyzing everything more than God ever intended it to be analyzed. Seriously. Someone once told me I have an analytical brain. I thought that sounded really cool and that it made me cool. Yeah. That’s not how this thing called anxiety works. Analytical only means that I think a lot and over analyze things way too much.

Expect The Worst

OMG Just reading that statement I can already tell it was written just for me. A lot of people say that I am an overly protective parent. That’s true but because I expect the worse. At a Halloween thing I went to there was all kinds of things just sitting around. Big heavy wood or metal things with sharp edges. My daughter and her best friend (her cousin) were chasing each other around in circle and in my head all I could see is one of them fall face first into one of these items and busting their head open. I know that sounds like really bad of me to say but I cannot help it. So I tell them not to run around those items. I have them run in an open area that is grass and I worry about spiders or snakes (thankfully its getting cold) So I don’t really like them running in grass either. I am terrified of snakes. deathly afraid of snakes and if one bit me or my girls I would probably have a heart attack.

Have Insomnia 

Well as you can tell from when this post was published. I don’t sleep very well. at all. Pretty much ever. I wish I did. I want to sleep. But sometimes my head just thinks about things over and over and over. I make lists for groceries or what bills need to be paid more than once to make sure I got everything right. I clean when I can’t sleep. Organizing things helps when I am anxious. What is sleep? Is it nice?

Hate making decisions, would rather someone make them for you

I hate hate hate hate having to make a decision. Usually because it takes a very long time for me to actually decide. I have to weigh the pros and cons. I have to make a list. I have to get peoples opinion. I think the only decision that I made without any help was when I decided to go back to school. And then I was too afraid to tell anyone.

Regret Often

Pretty much. I am a helping person. I have helped many people. and this isn’t just some way for me to gloat about what I’ve done. Because I completely feel bad that I regret spending all my money or time helping someone when they don’t want to help themselves. I regret buying myself something. Like I need pants I literally only have 3 jeans that fit comfortable. I am fat. I know this. I am trying to lose weight. It just isn’t working. So when I bought those 3 pairs of jeans I completely regretted it. I could’ve spent that money on bills, food or my girls. I don’t do well with spending money on me or having someone else spend money on me.

Can’t let things go/ Take things personally

This is pretty much the root of my arguments with my husband. I hold on to things way too long. Longer than I ever mean to. I promise I won’t do it but then that voice in my head goes….well you remember that one time and then it’s all I can think about. I also take things way too personally. Unfortunately, my husband cannot pick with me too much because I take it offensively or get hurt. I also take it personally if he picks around or jokes with another female because it comes across as flirting when he really doesn’t mean to. He’s an only child and didn’t learn things as easily or as completely as others like the actual way to flirt rather than joking around.

  Criticize yourself

This is me. 100% all day. everyday. I know it makes others upset about how I talk about myself. I am fat. I know I am. According to the weight chart I am way over fat. I used to be skinnier. I wish I could get back to that. I don’t have the best teeth. That comes from a freak accident with my niece and a broken arm. I am not pretty. My face could be skinnier. My hair doesn’t do anything special. It’s not super straight and its not curly. It just sits there and gets knotted. I am not the best mom. I fuss at my kids. I could be better. But I am not. Everyday I criticize something that I have or have not done.

Never 100% Certain/ feel tense

If you asked me if we should go left or right… I wouldn’t be able to give you an answer. I don’t know which is the correct way. You ask me for a percentage.. its going to be 95%. I am always tense. I am always prepared to leave. I am always waiting to leave and I am always depending on my husband to provide a little bit of relief. Anxiety sucks.

Feel like you can’t turn your brain off

If you haven’t learned anything from this post, you should understand that I cannot ever turn my brain off. I wish I could be like some of those people who can sit there and not think. What does it feel like to have no thoughts at all?

 

So thank you for listening to this long rant so early in the morning. If you see anything on the list that you can relate to. Let me know. Lets start the discussion on anxiety. Lets break the stigma around mental illness. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

 

#Anxiety… Tips for a relationship (maybe)

98aa8f2a5f3a96f0e76803a8fa001e2f--anxiety-relationships-anxiety-quotes-relationship

Although I personally hate repeating myself, especially when I have told my daughter to pick up her shoes before someone trips for the thousand time. There are some things that I like to have repeated. Well not like. I need.

The sad thing is. I come across as such a bitch all the time. Because I am afraid. Because I am always asking the same thing over and over. Because I want to know what is going on. Because I feel like someone is talking about me even when I am listening to the same conversation. I don’t know why. It just seems like they’re using some type of code to talk about me. It doesn’t help that these people my husband was friends with started all of these awful rumors about me. Even tho my husband has told them off and they’re no longer friends, they still run their mouth about me or stare me down if I am in the same area as them. They have even made comments about my kids and how they wish they could see them. Like I am in the wrong somehow for not letting them (they are bad people. like a leech. they literally suck the life…and finances out of people) be in my kids life. They also don’t understand the importance of kids having boundaries and respect. But I am getting off subject. Well sort of. They did not help my anxiety in my relationship in the beginning of things. They are a total different subject that I don’t like to get into because well lets just say…I get angry.

493919887975a357911f7b00d4fe3f90--health-anxiety-mental-health

This photo explains pretty much how being in a relationship with anxiety is all about. I know that it says its called relationship anxiety. However, my relationship isn’t the only part that I am anxious over. I am anxious all the time. It’s also not just with my husband that I do these things.

As a momma’s girl, I worry about my moms health. Is she ok? Did she make it home ok? I worry about her driving. I worry about her going to the store alone. I mean her knee gave out on her once. What if it happens in the store and she’s alone. Would someone help her up? Or would they rob her? I worry about my husband taking my daughter to the bathroom in public. You know where he stands outside the womens room. What if he turns for one second and she disappears? What if someone in the bathroom harms her? I literally cannot begin to tell you how much I fear on a day to day basis. Sometimes it is unbearable and I just stay at home and cry. It is awful. I worry about getting into a car accident when me and my husband go somewhere alone in the same car. Who would take care of our girls?

What do I do? well for one… my mom texts me every time before she comes to my house to let me know she is in the car. She texts me when she gets home in the evening and we pretty much text all day until we go to bed. I run all of the errands for her that she doesn’t have to. (Yes I go and run the errands alone even tho it makes me anxious to be in the car. I’d rather it just be me in a car accident to even begin to think about my mom or daughters in my car.) I take her to the store so that I know she is okay. I ask my husband to find the family bathrooms so that he can go in with our daughter. When I am with her in the public restrooms she is no farther than an arms length away from me. I try to ensure that I will always be able to grab her if something happens. We have talked about public safety and the importance of having a secret word. We’ve talked about stranger danger and that you need to make a scene if someone grabs you. Like screaming thats not my mommy or thats not my daddy. Anything that will bring attention to yourself….

There are many weeks where I have gone on about 4 hours of sleep a night. I sit here and worry or over think things. I know that I have provided some posts about how to do things when it comes to anxiety. Tips that might help. Unfortunately, this is a personal post. This is me sharing just a little bit of my personal fears with you. Maybe you’ll feel a little comfortable to share a little bit of your fears with me. Do you have a way to turn your brain off? How do you combat insomnia? I look forward to hearing from you.

Pretending is the hardest

quotes-The-only-thing-that-

Isn’t that the truth.

The funny thing is. Many people probably don’t notice you have something wrong. I find myself having to explain my constant moving when I’m talking or my constant apologizing because I have anxiety. But let me say I have depression and they’ll just tell me to cheer up. Telling a depressed person to cheer up is like telling the moon not to rise at night. Its imposible sometimes. We just got to go thru the motions.

quotes-Those-of-us-who-suff

Its a funny thing how everyone seems to perceive people with mental illness as weak. If you cannot tell they have something wrong then they are way stronger than you think. They are working that much harder so that you don’t see it. Why? Maybe they don’t want to burden you. Maybe they dont want to be rejected. Maybe they’ve tried this before and its difficult.

So what should you do? If you know someone with a mental illness.

Be there. Like really be there. They need that ride or die person who is going to help them battle the world. Which to them is a lot scarier than it is to you.

Listen. Really listen. Full attention. As someone who deals with anxiety and sometimes depression it would be nice to talk to someone close who isn’t going to judge me or make it feel like Im burdening them.

Don’t judge. Like ever. Judging a person with mental illness when they open up to you is more than likely going to make them shut you out from their head, from their demons. And plus it is never ok to judge someone.

Everyone needs a friend. Someone who will understand. And if you know someone who suffers from a mental illness and you want to be there. Do some research. Learn ways to help them cope. Anyone reading this….if you’re having a hard time. Comment below. I will be there to help you cope.

Dating someone who has anxiety.

Tips for dating someone with anxiety | ..don't agree with all of them, but everyone is different
As someone who has anxiety, I know that I am a handful. I totally feel bad about it as well. It is that reason that when I started dating my husband over 8 years ago I hid a lot of stuff from him. I didn’t want to scare him off by being too much. Or over reacting as some people believe. As I was scrolling through my social media this morning, I found this picture. I thought what an amazing idea. So I thought I would share it and break it down from my experience or what I’ve put my husband through in the past 8 years.

1.) Reassure them constantly

I am constantly thinking that I am over bearing or too clingy. Then there are times that I feel that he isn’t loving enough. Has he stopped loving me? Is he getting ready to bolt? Have I done something wrong? The thoughts have gotten less frequent lately. However, they have happened. I know that I have been quite annoying by asking the same questions like ‘how much do you love me?’ etc.. By being reassuring and talking to your significant other it will greatly help these thoughts become less frequent. Now, its not the same as never happening. I cannot turn my brain off or stop that bad little voice that says I’m being too much. But it is a good feeling that my husband understands where I am coming from instead of launching into an argument.

2.) Keep them in the loop of your life.

To me this is a big thing. I like to plan everything out. I like to have set times and things that are going to get done. I like to know what my husband has planned as well. I am constantly worried about his driving (riding with him scares me) so if he makes an unplanned trip to the game store instead of heading straight home it worries me. We know how long it takes to get from our house to his work and back. He also has to drive pass this intersection that has been known to have really bad wrecks. So being even just a little late scares me. There was also a time before we got married and weren’t living together that he decided he wanted to get a new car. But he didn’t share this tidbit with me. So as I was heading to work, I passed his house. There was a car there that I have never seen before. Although it wasn’t always my business what happened at his house, I didn’t know who was there. If our daughter was going to be there, I needed to know who was going to be around her. There are certain people who don’t respect my decision to not have smoking or drinking or drugs around my children so I don’t allow them around. Essentially, it is reassuring to your significant other if you fill them in on what you are doing. Not like the small stuff. I don’t need to know that he’s heading to the bathroom at work. That’s a little too much information.

3.) Text them when you are on your way and/or when you get home

This is very important for people with anxiety. If you’re getting home late or leaving late and don’t text your significant other who suffers with anxiety bad thoughts will be sure to happen. Like I have already stated, I worry about my husbands driving. So if he doesn’t text me to tell me he’s going to be late or he’s making a pit stop, I have the worst imagination for bad things happening. It is like constantly being a pessimist. Its awful. I’m pretty sure I am not the only one either. I also don’t condone texting while driving. I do, however, suggest sending a quick text message before leaving. We know how long it takes to get home. Add 5 to 10 minutes depending on traffic and let your boyfriend/girlfriend know. It will mean more than you realize.

4.) Hugs.

Have you ever seen that episode of Grey’s Anatomy where the heart doctor was autistic? Change made her freak out and to suppress her nervous system and calm her down she needed to be hugged tight. That works for people with anxiety as well. Hugs are always appreciated and hardly ever turned away.

5.) Triggers. Identify them.

This is not an easy task since anxiety manifest in people in different ways. It is hard to describe how my anxiety manifests because it has to do with a lot of things. Childhood memories, bad experiences, etc. Therefore, my triggers for certain things vary. Like today I had to get my brakes changed. They were so bad, it was almost to the point of having no brakes at all. That scares me dearly. I have been talking about getting my brakes changed for the past couple days. However, actually going to a shop to get them done is very hard for me. Talking to people face to face by myself makes me very anxious. My husband tried to take the car last night to get it done but they had already closed. He had planned on getting off early to get it done so that I wouldn’t have to possibly face an anxiety attack to get my car taken care of. However, this morning the brakes were so loud I sucked it up and went. I was very anxious standing in the shop with 4 guys asking to get my brakes fixed but I cannot even imagine the idea of no brakes with my kids in the car. (So that’s a win for me!!!) I had a mechanic shop that I was comfortable with. I knew them. I had used them for a while. Unfortunately, they went out of business. So finding a new business that would be patient with me and not try to overcharge me is not something I have been looking for.

6.) No Surprises. Unless you are certain it will make them happy.

I am not a surprise person. I like to know what is going to happen and when. That is why my husband has not tried to do a surprise birthday or anything like that. He doesn’t even try to sneak up on me. You know that cute thing where the guy goes behind the girl and covers her eyes and says ‘guess who?’ Yeah that’s not for me. I do believe I have elbowed him pretty hard before. I do not like surprises. I am pretty certain that anyone who suffers from anxiety is not a fan of surprises.

7.) Change is hard.

If that is not the truth. I do not like change. I do the same routine every morning. I get up, get lunches prepared. Wake my girls up. Get my oldest daughter ready for school. Pick my nephews up and then drop them off at school. My youngest daughter has a nap by 9 am. After that is a little more lenient. However, if we wake up late or something happens to throw off our morning it makes the rest of the day a little hard.

8.) Be there. Just be there.

This is so important. I think that it is very important to be with your significant other when they’re dealing with things. Also, don’t judge. We have a real disease. There is such a stigma around anxiety that it already makes it hard for us to talk about it. I have become such an introvert because people tend to throw my anxiety in my face like I am just making up an excuse. I love that my husband never judges me when I say I am feeling anxious or I am scared. I love how he tries to change his habits to make me a little less angry. Like when I am in the car with him, he increases his breaking distance because I am afraid his brakes will fail or he won’t stop in time and I’ll be in another wreck. It is so important to be with you significant other no matter what.

If you’re planning on spending your life with your significant other, it is important that you come to understand their anxiety. I think it is time we break the barrier and stop the stigma against mental illness. Speak up and speak out. We are not alone. We are one. If you have any other tips on how to date someone with anxiety, leave a comment. If your significant other does something that helps you through your anxious times, let me know. I would love to hear from you.