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Anxiety Diary 

 

Anxiety: (ang-zahy-i-tee)

noun, plural anx·i·e·ties.

Distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear of danger or misfortune: He felt anxiety about the possible loss of his job.
Earnest but tense desire; eagerness: He had a keen anxiety to succeed in his work.
Psychiatry. a state of apprehension and psychic tension occurring in some forms of mental disorder.

 

Here you can find my journey through the many stages of anxiety and how I feel I have dealt with it being part of my life. 

Feel free to comment* if you like.

 

*All comments are moderated before publication.

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A Shield Without Protection

Posted on 21st February, 2021
This entry feels very fragmented to me, it has taken many days to get to a stage to put my thoughts out there. The very thing that I write about often affects how I write it when I write it and even to the point of disturbing me that I do not write for days. A very big trigger this time has been receiving a letter that puts me into the shielding category during this covid pandemic. I have lived the last year locked away with shards of freedom to venture out but now that has all changed and I am simply not allowed out. Where I once had all the safety and comforts any one person can have protected me physically, it has now starting to destroy me mentally.
I stepped up my dosage of Sertraline and in doing so it placed little trigger points in place that set off the erratic shakes. Meditation and medication (namely Diazepam) mixed resolves about 70% of the fits I have and for the days that this combination does not work I find myself suffering from long bouts of recovery time. It is at these times that I lose sight of having any faith in the medication working for me.

Last Resort

Posted on 9th February, 2021
You will find that most GP's will not prescribe Diazepam due to its addictive nature but if you can control that then you may get a GP that will give you a limited amount each month. I have been talking to my GP on regular monthly consultations and it has got to the stage that I need something to relax me when things just get way too much for me to handle.
I have in the past had Diazepam and it was for a limited time of which I still have some spare saved for the day I absolutely had no other alternative. I was honest in letting my GP know this and as a result, she allowed me to have an as of when needed prescription and this has helped so much.
I have been suffering from fit like symptoms throughout the day and twitching leg muscles of a night as a result of the Sertraline and a vast majority of the time I can meditate the twitching away but there are times when it just gets too much and no amount of meditation can ease it. I lay there some nights absolutely exhausted wanting nothing more than a few hours sleep and this is when Diazepam becomes my last resort, the only downside to Diazepam for me is it can make me feel very groggy the following day and it takes just that little bit longer to return to my normality.
I am always optimistic that this will not be an ongoing remedy, but if this is the case I am willing to accept that I may have to make a small change that will give me back a quality of life.

Set Back

Posted on 6th February, 2021
Last week I attempted to go to an Amazon locker only minutes from where I live and even though I left it until fairly late at night, I think everyone else had the same idea. I instantly could not control my shaking and started to fit. I still managed to get my parcel but it has set me back somewhat and I feel like I do need a few little trips out, even if only late at night and just going for a drive or through the McDonalds drive-through to give me purpose and a reward for getting myself outside. The thing is it is hard to do any of this when you are shielding and it just gets harder and harder to venture out and when a fit starts to happen it not only takes over the whole day but also following days to recover fully.

Cannot Be Asked

Posted on 18th January, 2021
They say today is 'Blue Monday' but I am feeling like every day is blue for me. It started to happen with my social bubble being the first thing to forgo meeting up and now a further lockdown and the wait for my vaccine so I will be able to go outside. My daily breath of fresh air comes through my window and that is about it. My mood had changed and my energy levels are near non-existent and after getting up in the morning the first thing I want to do is go straight back to bed. At first, I could not be asked to even put this entry in but realise that doing so gave me a bit of hope that I may be able to kick this sluggish habit.

Jump in the Line (Shake, Senora)

Posted on 11th January, 2021
It started again on Thursday with simply not getting hardly any sleep, I managed to get two hours in total after constantly being woken up with knee jerk reactions to twitching in my legs, was I subconsciously thinking that I had to head out to get medication on Friday?
Friday was just an absolute disaster as barely any sleep the night before and a full-blown panic attack left me totally lifeless, I could not do it, could not face going outside.
My weekend has been ruined since all I have managed to do is constantly attempt to recover from waves of fits and involuntary twitching.
Today has been my first day of any sign of it easing up.

A Look Back

Posted on 31st December, 2020
I thought that when my anxiety finally came to light and I knew what was going on, then the best thing would be to get it down in a diary blog, something to reflect back on to let me know I am improving even if I thought I was not.  It also made for a great tool to those out there that read this in their own troubled times, knowing someone else had been through it and there was light at the end of the tunnel.
I have noticed that the thing with an anxiety diary is that it is not something that you blog about every day, it comes and goes and sometimes with days between my journeys and then there are times when it is really too hard to write how I am feeling because I do not understand it myself.
I do feel that with being in yet another lockdown it has pushed me back a bit and I can feel depression setting in like one-day blends into another, even to the point of losing track of what day or time it is, that then explains my bad sleep pattern and restless nights, my only comfort seems to be binge-watching box sets on Netflix.
Normally this is where I write a goodbye to 2020 and hello 2021 but right now there seems to be no divide so they can both 'Fuck Off'.

Tier 4

Posted on 31st December, 2020
It has taken me a bit of time to write this post as I feel I have just done a complete U-turn in my getting better. We entered tier 4 back on the 21st of December and I knew that a lockdown was going to be inevitable.
I was starting the second full week of my phased return and no sooner had I started my shift I was approached by personnel and told that I needed to go home for my own safety, as the business decided it in my best interest.
It was nice to know that someone was looking out for me at work and to ease the blow of having to go home again I was told 'go home to enjoy getting ready for Christmas'. To most that probably would sound like a real treat but for me it has set me back to almost square one again and it has taken me a few days to get my head around it again.

Full Week

Posted on 21st December, 2020
So I survived my first few days back and now it is time to do a full week. I was not sure how it was going to be but I had in mind that it might take some time to get used to and this week might just be a little tougher, so I planned to do it day by day with no expectations.
I had made it to Wednesday and on Thursday morning I started to feel exhausted but I got my self dressed and soldier on as I knew I had only two days left and then a nice long weekends rest.
There was always talk about Christmas being different this year but I had already prepared for that and I was already travelling from two different tier groups to go to work, then it all changed as colleagues around me started to talk about going into a higher tier group, this triggered my panic attack.
I had a safe place at work I could go when I was feeling anxious and could be left undisturbed to calm down, meditate if need be and above all be out of sight of my fellow colleges. I started to shake and knew this would just pass but it did not and started to manifest into a full-blown panic attack. I had made it so far and felt I had let everyone down including myself, the shakes got worse and worse and spiralled out of my control, I could not calm down.
It did eventually pass but I was so drained and exhausted I could feel myself slipping away and feeling unresponsive. A first aider was called and it was decided that I had to be sent home to recover.
I slept for fifteen hours and returned to work the next day, this thing was not going to beat me and I notched it up as just one of many glitch days.

First Week Back

Posted on 16th December, 2020
I know I am not fixed yet and every day is a step forward in what some may see as recovery but for me it is more a journey, a journey that I discover who I am and what my strengths and weaknesses are, I allow my mind and body to recover in their own way and they both need to take their own time to recover.
Part of my recovery was to get back to work and last Wednesday was a new step forward.  I had my reservations about returning to work and knew that many would ask how I was, whether fishing for information or out of genuine concern, either way talking about it I knew it could set me back with the very possibility of fit like shakes or even worse, a full-blown panic attack.
It was too overwhelming from the moment I entered into work and the shaking started, I was met by many colleagues and because they were unaware of my condition panic set in amongst them and first aiders were alerted and before I knew it I was surrounded once more and starting to go into a panic attack of my own.
I am finding I get good days and bad days with not knowing what triggers the shakes since I am not in any kind of panic state and so I am putting it down to the medication. I have this strange kind of buzzing going on in my body that for me feels like I am shaking but it is not that visual so it makes me realise that the shakes never go away but more so something triggers them to manifest into something more, something else very visual and out of my control but I learn to let it come and go and equally I pay it no mind other than I know it has happened. My meditation sessions using the 'Calm' app is teaching me to allow it to be present and then to let is go, pay it no attention other than a single acknowledgement.
I am slowly getting there and only time will tell on how speedy my recovery will be but I am forever optimistic.

Phased Return

Posted on 8th December, 2020
I have been signed off work for just over two months now and as lovely as that might sound to some people, for me, it has been a waiting game to wanting to return to work and get some normality back into my life.  Work is a big part of our daily routine and even though most of us wish we were somewhere else it is part of our evolution, the social interactions with others are what keeps a lot of us sane, we as a human race are not used to such isolation, we interact.
I have had the best of support from loved ones, friends, my GP, my employer and tomorrow will be a step towards getting better, I return to work on a phased return.  Just a few hours this week but it is a step in the right direction. 
Am I anxious, yes of course I am, I have got this churning feeling in my gut but once a day one is out of the way I do think the steps set in place will aid my progression to recovery?  As much as I think tomorrow will be frightening I do think if I start having a fit like shakes that might be more frightening for my work colleges.
Just have to take the day as it comes.