Tuesday, January 15, 2013

In which I idolize, promote, and show how "normal" a well-known actor can be...

One of my absolute favorite people of all time is Wil Wheaton.  I can't say that I'm a lifelong fan, as Stand By Me was a little too content-heavy for me (according to my parents) until I was into my teens.  I can say that had I been born just a few years earlier, I'm sure he would have been part of my pop-culture fascinations.

Over the last couple years, Wil started to pop up in more and more things I enjoy.  I find him funny, quirky, and I totally get his sense of humor.  I respect him for only making the career choices that would positively effect his life, even if that meant being behind the screen of a computer for some time.  Just when I thought he couldn't get any cooler, I found out we have something in common that's maybe... not so cool.

Wil Wheaton suffers from Depression & Anxiety.  Way to bring me back to reality.  He is like me, and brave enough to say so.

In this post that Wil shared on his blog, he says:
I remember the first week after I started meds, Anne and I were out for a walk. I felt her hand in mine, and realized that I didn't have any lingering tension or unhappiness just buzzing around in my skull. I was just enjoying a walk with my wife, and holding her hand. 
And I began to cry, because I was so happy. 
“It’s like I was in a loud room for so long, I didn't know how loud it was,” I said, “and all I have now is the ringing in my ears.” 
She squeezed my hand and I said, “I’m going to remember that ringing in my ears, so I never go back into that room again.”

When I read this post, I began to cry, because I know what he means.  There was so much noise in my head before.  Not voices, or sounds, but... noise.

(In that same blog post, Wil quotes Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess.  She is also an awesome someone, and also deserves our love and attention.  Check her out too.  In my imaginary world, she and I are BFF.)

Bottom line... Seeing someone that is so public write exactly how you feel... it's really something... something that I hold on to tightly.  Knowing that people I admire, like Wil and Jenny, are able to admit their feelings and seek medical treatment makes my own medical advocacy both easier and more important to me.

A prisoner in my own skin...

Beyond anxiety and depression (henceforth referred to as "a&d"), I suffer from some other medical conditions, related to my reproductive system.  All of these things band together and work against me like some sort of brick wall of sadness and self-doubt.  I try very hard not to let it include self-pity, but I'll admit it- I have those days, as I'm sure you do too.

I'm only mentioning this because it's caused a physical change in me.  The onset of my hormonal issues has caused a significant physical change.  Before I got medicated again, I was going to the gym, drinking lots of water... but it was almost manic.  It was another coping mechanism, and if I had continued like that, I'm not sure what would have happened.  I avoided scales, because I obsess over numbers... I avoided a calorie counter on my phone because I obsess over numbers.  I was so unhealthy in my mind that the work I was doing for my body wasn't very healthy either.

I'm not used to this body.  I've had it for 3 years now, and I'm still not used to it.  I don't shop, I don't enjoy trying on clothes, and I feel mostly uncomfortable in my own skin.  I used to know what was cute and what looked good on me... I used to be able to share clothes with people... it used to be able to find me costumes for theatrical productions.  Now I only wear one style of one particular brand of jeans, and most often you can find me in hooded sweatshirts, or anything looser that will hide my figure.  I feel like I'm 13 again, trying to hide my blossoming body... but looking back, I'd take that over this any day.

I know that all these things are connected.  Since I started my meds, I haven't been to the gym.  I feel horrible about it, but somehow not guilty enough to get off my ass and go.  The payments automatically come out of my account, so I really should keep going, but I just can't find the motivation.  I've even had friends offer to work out with me, but I always make excuses.  It's just one excuse after another to avoid doing the things I have to.

I finally approached my doctor about my hormonal issues, and we are in the process of testing that.  I'm convinced once I can get that in check, things will start to get easier...

But feeling like a different person trapped in a fat person's body starts to wear on a person after a while.  It's mentally exhausting.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Emotional Sponge

I find that with my anxiety, I tend to re-focus myself on the people around me.  Off-setting my own thoughts to thinking about others gives me a sense of purpose, and makes me feel like I can focus on things other than my own problems.  The only downside to this is that I tend to be an emotional sponge.  I take the feelings of those I care about and I put them on myself.  There are days where I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders.

Don't get me wrong; I wouldn't change a single thing about helping my friends and family through their lives, and I'm really glad that they come to me for help... but I need to learn to let things go.  I need to do what I can to help people, and then let it all go- rather than hanging onto it and piling it all on top of my own problems.

My sleep schedule is all screwed up lately.  I'm hoping to do an "emotional dump" pretty soon, and maybe I'll get back onto a regularly scheduled life... Maybe.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

When Life Beats Your Meds

Today is a blog from a personal perspective.

Today, life is beating my meds.  I felt overwhelmed immediately this morning, so I included a Xanax in my morning medicine routine (Lexapro & Zyrtec).  I sat around for most of the afternoon, watching Netflix.  I got up and got ready to go to work, everything was fine.  I showered, did my hair, and moisturized my face. My husband dropped me off at work and I settled in for the evening.  About my third client into the day, I cut my finger.  It didn't feel bad, but it was bleeding quite a bit.  I threw a bandage on it and finished my client.  I went to change the bandage after the client checked out, but all of a sudden I felt extremely emotional and overwhelmed.  I had the biggest urge to start crying.  "I'm sick of cutting myself all the time!" I exclaimed to a coworker... it's part of the job, I know, but it still sucks.  I took another Xanax (I'm allowed three per day), and tried to calm down... but I can't get the feeling to go away.  That particular client and the following one did not leave me any gratuity and that really gets to me too.  Am I not performing at top capacity because of how I feel?  Am I shutting down too much?  It's times like these I have to try and turn off my mind and find something else to do.  I'll probably do some online window shopping, not that it will make me feel a whole lot better.  I guess I could take care of some business emails, but that always ramps up my anxiety, too.

This is a blog-in-the-moment.  I didn't sit down and think about a topic and outline what I was going to cover... I'm flying by the seat of my overly-anxious pants, here.

Stay strong, breathe, and reach out to someone if you need to.  I'm going to try like hell to take my own advice today.

Until next time...