Tuesday, September 23, 2008

It's Always All Right

I haven’t been motivated to write recently because I’ve had some setbacks with my anxiety. On Saturday morning I felt queasy before yoga and felt sick for most of the time there. On Sunday, hubby and I had a fun day planned of shopping and cake and picking out our wedding album and I woke up riddled with so much anxiety it was exhausting to just keep my eyes open. I immediately got upset because I had been doing so well that I told hubby I was having anxious feelings and didn’t know if I was up for our fun outing. On one side, it was awful to feel this way. But on the flip side, I haven’t had anxious feelings in so long I had practically forgotten how they felt. I kept trying to drum that into my head as I forced myself to go out. We wound up making it to about two stores before I said “that’s it, I’m done” and we headed home.

This situation made me think about a couple of things. First, it made me realize that I had actually gone quite a few weeks without an anxious episode (as dubbed by me), second, I still pushed thru the anxiety and went out… and even though I didn’t make it to all the stores or out to dinner or to whatever else we had planned, I still stepped outside the house and outside of my comfort zone. As for the third thing, I remembered my post on expectations. Could you imagine how I would have felt if my expectations for the weekend were sky high and I felt my anxiety ruined it for me? I would have been so much worse than I was already and it wouldn’t have helped me at all! I was so thankful that I kept my expectations under control and repeatedly told myself that we could always do more shopping or go out to dinner next weekend. The world wasn’t going to end. We’d still have fun. And my husband wasn’t going to serve me with divorce papers for changing the plans. I always feel very self-conscious when I have anxiety. I feel like people get disappointed in me for not having better control over myself. But it is times like this when I need to step inside myself and be my friend. I need to NOT beat myself up to the point of near distortion because I’m having a bout of anxiety. Would I yell at my husband? Would I make fun of my mother? Would I pick a fight over this with a friend? No, no and NO. So why in the world should I wallow in self hate because of something I’m working on? My sister-in-law always refers to herself as a work in progress and I like that idea. Most people are works in progress. No one is perfect and very few people are completely satisfied with every aspect of their lives. Everything is a work in progress when it comes to life and it’s so important to see that it is ok.

Unfortunately, the anxiety didn’t go away Monday morning and I was just as sick. Even as I type this today I feel a little anxious. I do wish I was home on my couch in my “safe” place but that’s just not reality. There is no “safe” place, just a hiding place. I’m proud of myself that I forced myself to come to work and that I’m being productive when all I want to do is hide under the covers. This is the time that it’s most important to be strong. But it’s still ok to have some rough patches. I’ll get thru it. This is just a minor setback on my personal journey. And when setbacks happen, I have to remember to stop and enjoy the scenery…

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