A quick apology for the length of this post! These posts aren’t going to be this long every week, but since this is the first time I write about my mental health I really wanted to go ahead and give a bit of an overview to my mental illnesses and the journey I’ve been on so far this year 🙂
Alright, so I suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, panic attacks, social anxiety, and depression. And to top it all off, I tend to get suicidal thoughts when my depression hits rock bottom.
Life is great!
So depression is something I’ve dealt with since elementary school, but anxiety and the panic attacks have all been things that have been going on for only 5 years. I won’t go into detail about the events that lead to the generalized anxiety disorder, which later also turned into social anxiety, which then also lead to the panic attacks, and then worsened the already existing depression. Life is a bitch, but I like to remind myself that if I can survive this One Direction hiatus then I can survive this. Just kidding! Because I am not taking this hiatus very well hahahahaha *cries*
In all seriousness though, it sucks that I’ll find new ways to cope and be able to lead my life as normal as possible with the anxiety and the panic attacks and I do well for a few months, but then out of nowhere it hits worse than ever and I have to find new ways to deal with it all.
And that’s where I am at the moment. In the “finding new ways to deal with this shit” phase of the process. I spent the first 3 months of this year living an anxiety and depression free life for the first time in the 5 years since it all went to hell and then at the end of March life was like, “You know what would be great? A REALLY BAD PANIC ATTACK. Followed by really bad anxiety and more pANIC ATTACKS.”
So April was a bITCH and then May was a little better, but still a bitch and now here I am and so far I’ve done fairly well I’d say all things considered.
April was a month I spent going to the doctor and getting blood work done to eliminate any other causes for the anxiety and when nothing came up the doctor wanted to prescribe anti-anxiety medication and as someone who hasn’t had any good experiences with it, I said no. So what to do? I decided to try acupuncture and crazy thing is, it has been helping so much more than I expected.
Acupuncture in theory sounds scary, but after you get over the initial shock of having several small needles in different parts of your body sticking out it’s actually not bad. Relaxing even. So every thursday for the past 5 weeks I’ve been going to acupuncture where I get those needles poking me, followed by 40 minutes or so of meditation with said needles still on me, and then it comes to an end with cupping and a bit of a massage. I know what we’re all feeling like right now:
I was skeptic as hell at first too, but since the first treatment I have felt several positive changes in myself. I’ve had maybe 1 actual panic attack since which amazes me because until that first appointment I was having at least 2 every damn week. My acne, while not totally gone, has diminished. I sleep better, I eat more, my anxiety while still there is weaker than it was just a month ago. Along with the treatment I’m given natural pills to help and just last week I got some specifically for anxiety and WOW. Those pills have truly been a miracle for me. I still get anxious, don’t get me wrong, but it’s less pronounced.
I’ve also taken up meditation in the last week. Before I was only doing it when I went to acupuncture, but this last week I’ve been doing it everyday.
At first right before bed, the last three days once in the morning and once right before bed. I use this app called Headspace that talks you through the meditation. I know a week of doing this isn’t very long, but just last night I woke up in the middle of a panic attack and you know what my body automatically did? It was like, “shit we’re panicking. WE’RE PANICKING!!!!” And then without thinking my body went straight into meditation mode. I did the breathing and the clearing of my mind so as to only focus on said breathing and I shit you not, I don’t even remember how long after I fell asleep. All I know is that I was ready to go 100% into a panic attack and my brain and body were just like:
Ever since I woke up I can’t stop thinking about the incident and I honestly don’t know if I dreamed it. That’s how surreal the experience was. I know it happened because I woke up with my chest feeling tight, but damn was it weird to shut it down like that in the moment.
So those are my two things right now. Acupuncture and meditation. This upcoming week I want to implement exercise to my routine and see how that helps so that’ll be the next update.
Aaaaand yeah. If you stuck around all the way to this part, THANK YOU. Again, I’m sorry this was long, but I haven’t talked about my mental health on this blog yet and I felt it was necessary to start the post with that 🙂
If anyone has any tips that help with anxiety, by all means leave them in the comments! Thanks for reading! 😀