Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Anxiety & Me

Hey my lovelys,

So I guess if you have been following me on snapchat you will know I haven't been myself on it really since around Christmas time.  I haven't experienced any sad times infact I celebrated Dylan's first ever Christmas, Cailans first ever Christmas where he understood what was going on, got away on a weekend brake with Lee for some 'us' time, danced the night away with family and made some unforgettable memory's at my cousins wedding and brought the new year in with my best friend but somehow even after all these amazing moments I've been feeling low.

I just want to put it out there that I am not depressed, anxious yes but I am not depressed.  However I still have days where I feel very low.  I say low because I am not quite sure how else to explain it. Let me call them 'the bad feels'.

Anxiety is something I have been going back and forth about writing about simply because it makes me uncomfortable talking about it.  Now I have touched on it here and there on my snapchat but my way of dealing with 'the bad feels' is to just swallow them like a big pill.  Try my best to ignore them and hide how I am really feeling!  Hence why the snapchat has been so quite!  I recently just wrote a post called Mam down... MAM DOWN and its because of that post I decided to open up and talk about my story.  If you wish to read that post just CLICK HERE.

It's just not okay.  Its okay not to be okay and since being with Lee I have learned that!  He encourages me to talk about things even when I would refuse that there is anything wrong.  If only I had a euro for the amount of arguments we have had because he knows I'm not okay, I would have a pretty sick collection of Louboutins!  Just saying! Haha.  I have no idea why I would rather bottle things up let them manifest from 'bad feels' to 'very bad feels' and ultimately bring on an anxiety attack!

I have recently learnt how to deal with my anxiety attacks!  For years I was having them and not knowing what they even were!  I thought it was normal to over think, be anxious, not sleep, wake up at night in a pool of your own sweat, struggle to breathe and even have pains in your chest.  I  thought this was normal!  It wasn't until 5th year when I started seeing the councilor in school and chatting with her that she told me what I was describing to her was anxiety.  I had absolutely no idea what she was talking about which when I look back now infuriates me because I believe all schools should educate their young pupils about mental health and all of its forms.  Especially depression and anxiety but that's another rant for a different day!  Maybe schools are different now days because it is more socially acceptable to talk about things like this I'm just not sure!

I can't prevent them and the thing with anxiety attacks is 9 times out of 10 you have no idea where they've come from!  They sneak up on you like a predator hunting its pray!  I don't have anxiety every day.  Infact I could go weeks and even months without one but suddenly one day BOOM I could have one out of thin air, for no particular reason on a very normal day.
I have always been a worrier.  I worried over everything growing up but I have to say I was lucky in the sense it never held me back from anything I really wanted to do.  Well apart from going to parades and things like that.  People who were all dressed up in costumes used to freak me out!  I'm not kidding my mam couldn't bring us anywhere and by us I mean my sister too, haha.  She was just as afraid as I was.  Even to this day I hate people fully dressed up in costumes.  I think its because you can't see there face and you have no idea who that person is?   Anyways I think that's more of a fear then anxiety to be honest.

As I said I was lucky that my anxiety when I was younger never really held me back but as I've gotten older it has.  I'm 24 years old and I haven't gone out with my friends or Lee for a few drinks in years because of my anxiety.  I get anxiety about my weight anytime I get ready to head out.  My body has completely changed since having kids and I'm struggling to lose the last 2 stone I need to be back at my pre baby weight.  To some when they have babys its nothing to them and for others like myself you gain while your pregnant and struggle to lose when your not.  Over the last few months I learned to be comfortable with who I am however that doesn't mean I'm happy staying this weight.  I feel like its way more important to be able to look at yourself and like what you see rather then hate it.  That's not healthy.  We all come in different shapes, sizes and colours.  I compared myself to girls who have never had kids or girls on magazines where they would be photoshopped to almost look like a different person but that's what I wanted for so long.  I never even had that shape to begin with but I craved it more then ever now.  I had to just sit down one day and really look at myself.  Even if I did lose my desired two stone I wasn't going to look anything like them girls but that was okay.

Since that day I have been so much more self confident and comfortable in who I am.  Which in turn had a knock on affect with my anxiety.  I was now that little bit more confident in myself.  I can say for the first time in a very long time that I am comfortable being me.  As I said I still have a way to go before I'm at my pre baby weight but at least now I have the confidence to get myself back into a gym or out for a run.  How was I ever going to lose the weight if I every time I went to run or go to the gym I would get anxiety about it and not go.  It was all just one viscous circle.

I have never spoke about this to anyone apart from my family and Lee but I am going to share with you one of the hardest times in my life where I first realised I had anxiety.  I was in 6th year so I was quite old I would have been 17 at the time.  I was going through a rough patch with my then boyfriend one of my best friends in my friend group at the time had some sort of vendetta against me or at least what felt like one.  Everything I did seemed to bother her.  We were very close before it so it actually really upset me at the time.  Back then I was not confident in myself at all and everything that happened me felt like it would only ever happen me. you know?  I was the kind of girl who just wanted to please everyone and hated the fact someone didn't like me.
I was asked to do something at my graduation mass and I found out some girls in my year were totally against it and stuff was being said and I was hearing bits and pieces of what people were saying.  Of course I had no idea at the time what was true and what wasn't but I just felt like a nail entering a wall.  Every time I heard something it hit me with a bang and just like a nail disappearing into a wall I disappeared into myself.  That on top of the relationship problems and the added pressure of the leaving cert I was at braking point.  I began going home for lunch which I never did and I lived across the road.  I started closing myself off from my friends which now looking back I really regret because I should of looked to them as support but I didn't.  I felt myself becoming lost.  I was becoming more and more shelled.  At night I would have anxiety attacks about having to get up in the morning and go to school.  That's not right know one should ever feel like that.
It got to the point where I just couldn't face another day in school and I was always close to my mam and dad and they knew everything I was going through.  I remember to this day crying in my mams arms at 17 years of age telling her I just couldn't go back.  It was nearing my blocks so I had the leaving curriculum almost finished.  We decided to have a meeting with my year head to talk about my options but for me at the time there was only one option.  I couldn't go back feeling like that every morning certainly was not healthy.  I told my year head everything who was very shocked because she had no idea I ever felt like that.  At the end of the meeting we agreed I stay at home provided I would study at school hours.  I walked out of school for the first time in weeks with no heavy strain on my shoulders.  The weight had been lifted almost instantly.
Now I'm not saying if you face a problem you should just walk away and not deal with it but if your in a situation that your walking up every morning with anxiety because you have to go somewhere or do something.  Then just get the hell out.  Nothing is worth feeling like that.

During that time I broke up with my boyfriend and I learned who my true friends were.  I did infact attend my grad mass and I'm so glad I did.

There is always a silver lining and things will always get better.
You just really need to believe that.

If you have anxiety I urge you to talk to someone.  Whether it be your best friend / teacher / parent or doctor.  Talk to someone because its not healthy to hold it in.

I hope by sharing my story finally that you will now know that your not alone. There are know definite figures but it is estimated that 1 in 9 people suffer with anxiety.  That is extremely high.  I hope by sharing my story you'll share yours and we will finally end the silence of anxiety.  Don't give it power over you anymore.

A problem shared is always a problem halved.




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Until next time,
Lisa.
x

P.S you will also find me on the following...
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