Well folks, its been 8 days since the initial anxiety attack/ panic attack...
I am full swing of the ups and downs. I would actually say it is more highs and lows. For 36 hours, I was medication free and feeling normal. I went to the doctor for an update. (For those of you suffering your primary care doctor can be a great resource!!!!!!) She thought the I was a lot better than our initial meeting. We talked. We discussed how supportive people are a huge part of getting up off the ground. We discussed how some people, with all the great intentions, have no idea what they are saying is harmful. I had family members suggesting I may have a brain tumor from the changes in my mood because they saw that on tv... While coming from a good place, this is the worse thing to tell someone who has a mind that will not shut off. By the end of the thought process, I was planning a funeral, figuring out my life insurance and writing a good bye letter to my family... All because of someone's advice. Be careful what you say.
Once recalling everything with my doctor, the walk back to work was quiet. My office was quiet. Grading was calling but not loud enough to drown out the thoughts of everything we just talked about. The spiral started again.
I freaked. I took meds that I was off of for 24 hours. It did not help. I knew then, this was fight I needed to face with myself and I knew then I was going to win. The question is how. Everyone is different. Everyone is strong in different ways. While I do believe support and help is key, I also think this is something that needs to come within me. I prayed. I cried. I talked until I could not even make sense anymore. I threw up because of the uncontrolled thoughts.
Then my husband said stop. Get up. Do something routine. I did the dishes. Once they were done with the dishes, my mind started. But I knew if I could just stay in front of it I could fix this. Maybe not this week, maybe not in a month but I would learn to control my anxiety and to find a way to get from a high or low back to a middle ground. My comfort zone.
I got a very sweet and helpful phone call from a friend and family member who has been there. Who says, your are not crazy. You are wonderful. You need support in your life like that. Not the over analyzers the complete supporters.
I did something I should not have but I needed help for coping. I googled the heck out of anxiety. I am an extremely logical person and a trained scientist. If you are not, this is probably the worst thing to do. There is a lot of crap on the internet. However, one thing that stuck with with me was if the body is tired so is the mind. Do intense workout for 10 mins. Get in control of your body. Intense meaning you cannot do the workout with your complete concentration. As my husband said, it is too easy if you are thinking about anything beside the current exercise. I lifted heavy weights, did intense reps. Within 5 mins the only thing in my mind was do not drop the weight on your toe! I was back. Even just for a second. It felt like complete bliss. The whole time I was working out. I complemented myself. I have a phd in quantum chemistry. I have a success job. I have a beautiful family. I will get through this because I am strong and I want to get through this. Anxiety is part of me, it will not control and define me.
I also find it very helpful to hear about my past struggles in my own words. Everyone interprets things differently. I want to know I can get through this next time because I have the struggle here; written out; in my own words. Like I said before. I am a very logical person and I can overcome this.
Two steps forward; one step back.
Tomorrow's goals: Lecture, grade, meetings. If I lose track, I work on the 9th floor. That is a lot of stairs for someone out of shape. I am sure it will be a struggle to go up and down all 9 flights but it will work to get the mind off things.