I have been feeling down lately and have been noticing how many people I know dealing with anxiety, including myself. I don't always talk about it here on the blog, although I am honest when things are wearing me down or problems arise. After I had my daughter 11 years ago now I suffered from post natal depression which got really bad. I think it was after watching the bombing of the towers one night whilst feeding her around 2am and thinking I was watching a movie, but then realising that it was real that the nightmare of anxiety and panic attacks started. It really is hard to deal with and having mornings where you cant get out of bed, cant cook anything or eat anything, or feeling as though you are suffocating and cant breathe is very scary on a daily basis. I ended up going to see my doctor about it and getting medication hoping it would fix things and having some counselling through Panda which helped a great deal. After a few months I could actually drive the car again without panicking and could actually eat properly again. I lost 23 kilos in a matter of weeks first off as I couldn't eat anything and therefore my energy wasnt right, and I couldnt sleep at night. I struggled to go out with friends and family anywhere. Eventually I got better and stopped taking the medication for about a year and then the Bali bombings happened and it started all over again. I vowed to stop watching the news about bad things happening as it was really starting to filter into my life and bringing back the anxiety. Fast forward to about 6 weeks ago now and I was starting to feel much better thinking that I didnt need to take so much medication so on my doctor's advice I lowered it. 3 weeks ago I could tell it was coming back as I wasnt sleeping properly, and then the big one came when I had to drive over a bridge that was big and I freaked out pulling up on the side of the freeway making my partner drive over it. I felt awful and felt like I was suffocating but was hoping it was just an off day. Yesterday I had panic attacks whenever I had to drive over a big hill or over a bridge, and of course I stopped the car and panicked over it wishing I didnt have to do it because it was paralysing me. My partner got home last night and all I did was cry wishing it wasn't me that had to suffer through this all over again. That is the worst part knowing that this is a lifetime thing for me and I will always have to take the medication so I can function properly. I know that in a few weeks' time I will be able to drive normally again and hopefully sleep better too which helps a lot and get out of this bubble thinking it is only me suffering when in fact it affects my whole family. I know there are lots of other people out there who suffer from anxiety in different ways but I just thought I would share my story in the hope it will help someone else who may be going through the same thing and not realise. Anxiety is a real disease which needs to be managed by help and medication and you may not always know when someone is suffering from it. Even people getting angry or upset over little things is a sign of anxiety so please be careful and remember that not everyone walks the same path as you, and their lives can be a lot different with things to deal with too.
Stay happy and healthy!