I’ve heard it said that the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
I need to add a bit of a tag line on to that….but not always.
This good intention has actually lead to the beginning of my redemption.
I started this blog with the good intention of addressing addictions and a source of help for those involved with addictions in some form or another. That’s still my intention-eventually. It has sort of evolved into a blog about my road to recovery. Well to be honest it is now about my recovery. My blog title “Recover Me” was supposed to be generalized for all of us in whatever form of recovery we find ourselves in.
At this point in my recovery I have come to accept that I have a diagnosis of anxiety and I am co-dependent (although my understanding is that the mental health field is getting away from using that term).
I have come to accept that I am where I am today because of anxiety and that I am not the only one in the world that struggles with feeling like I am “different” than the rest of the world.
I was watching a video of Dr. Kelly Brogan regarding anxiety. She is a holistic psychiatrist in Manhattan.
She said over 100,000,000 million prescriptions per year are filled for anxiety medications.
She described anxiety as a sense of discomfort in your own skin, a sense of unease and that you feel you can’t meet needs.
That’s me for sure. I think the last part is what developed the co-dependent part of me. When people are talking about a problem they are having or that something I suggested didn’t work or how someone else gave them “the best advice, present, help, etc” I feel I have to be better, do better, make it better. This leads me into a tailspin of how can I help, what could I have done better, I have to fix this, why wasn’t mine good enough. In other words, I get very anxious.
She also talked about a new division on mental health called psychoneuroimmunology. It says the immune system, brain, gut and hormonal system are all related and must all be looked at when addressing symptoms. She went on to say that the root cause of anxiety is linked to blood sugar imbalance, thyroid balance (I have underactive thyroid) , and food sensitivities.
Before I get to what she suggested I want to be transparent with one of my panic episodes. I’m not saying we all have the same issues with anxiety but I’m sure there must be others that have had similar experiences. If we can begin to recognize that some of our thoughts are the irrational interpretation of life at the moment that’s brought on by our anxiety then we can begin to try to take a moment to think before we act.
When I was a child my father loved to go to the beach and therefore alot of time was spent at the beach. My family learned to love the ocean as well. Often my mother would takes the six of us to the beach with one of her friends. (When my Dad was working). I was the youngest of six so when we went to the beach my older siblings would venture off into the water with their friends. While my mother was involved in conversation with her friend I would wander off to the water. As a 5 year old I did not understand the power of a wave and current and would eventually get pulled under into what I now refer to as “the spin cycle”. When I finally arose from the torrent I wanted nothing more than to run to the my family. Oddly enough the spin cycle carried me far enough way from the point I entered the water that my family was nowhere in sight. My thought was that everyone went home.
The summer before I entered 3rd grade my family and I were traveling to Morocco because my father was stationed there. We got on a train in Spain to get to our next destination. There wasn’t enough room in the compartment my mother was in for me to be there so she told me to step into the next compartment and she would come and get me when we arrived. I must have fallen asleep on the bench I sat on because the next thing I knew the number of people in my compartment had doubled and I could no longer see my mother or any of my brothers and sisters. I got up and people were staring at me and talking but I did not understand due to the foreign language. Again, I thought I would never see my family again.
As a result of these and other experiences like it, I have issues with abandonment. I tend to get panicky (anxious) with arguments and losing sight of people when out on an excursion or vacation. I can tend to be a bit overprotective and clingy. So, as a co-dependent I do not like confrontation and do not do well with people in emotional pain (unless it is a non related person). My first priority with related people is to avoid confrontation so that they don’t leave me and to alleviate everyone’s pain so they always come to me and never abandon me.
When I can realize that the irrational thoughts and potential reactions are anxiety based I have a better chance of looking for the healthy response and reaction.
Now for Dr. Brogan’s initial suggestions
Eliminate coffee. Did I get that right. That in itself raises the sleeping anxiety dragon. I did it before for about 6 months or maybe a year but I did it by choice and now I am being told. For some reason that makes it different. That will be a hard one. She also suggested a really weird breathing exercise. I’m really not big on this kind of activity but hey why not, it’s worth a try. I just hope no one catches me doing it.
One of my own practices as I spoke of before is I made an essential oil blend and just smelling it makes me happy so I know it is at least releasing some of my own happy hormones.
OK, so I am listening to my logic side that tells me I don’t need to keep writing so that I get EVERYTHING in here.
See you next time!
Leave a comment if you’d like about your own experiences. Or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org