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Anxiety Help - Journal


boltnrun
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You know when you want a day to go by quickly but it just dragggsssss!!! My dear friend who I haven't seen since Fall 2019 and his spouse are on their way to visit my town. I am working today then taking tomorrow off but I want this work day to end already!! And it's just crawling. Boo!

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So thanks to my friends I stepped way, way out of my comfort zone the past two days.  I dined indoors 3 times and ate outdoors twice.  Of course I wanted to rush right home and shower but today that seemed ridiculous because I already showered twice.  Three times seems superfluous.  I am not going to die of Covid because I sat in a restaurant for less than an hour.  I am not contaminated and coated with Coronavirus and I will not slurp the virus up from my bed or pillow because it transferred from my chair at the restaurant to my skin to my sheets or pillow.  So stupid...but I'm struggling now to try not to leap into the shower.  I really, really do not want to shower a third time.

This is not me being funny either.  This is a real struggle I'm having.  I already had Covid.  I am fully vaccinated.  I am not going to get Covid from a chair or a table at a restaurant.  But my mind thinks I still can.

I have struggled with intrusive thoughts for years.  That's why I haven't "fired" my psychologist yet, because I want to stop these thoughts and behaviors.  My insurance covers all except the co-pay so why not continue?

So nice to see my friends though.  It was truly wonderful.  They had such a nice time and loved my city so much they are considering moving here!  It would be awesome if they did.

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7 hours ago, boltnrun said:

I am not going to get Covid from a chair or a table at a restaurant.  But my mind thinks I still can.

I have struggled with intrusive thoughts for years.

I know what that's like, to know something and yet still watch your brain convince you that the opposite is true.

My intrusive thoughts have always centered around romantic relationships--or so I thought. I've written volumes about my cyclical thinking (but not so much on here, since it's been largely dormant for the last 9 years or so). 

Interestingly, since I've been in a healthy, stable relationship, the intrusive thoughts have stopped--except where my immediate family is concerned. So that makes me wonder if my intrusive thoughts are actually a form of trauma from my upbringing, and kick into place anytime I bond closely with anyone, romantic or otherwise. 

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9 hours ago, Jibralta said:

I know what that's like, to know something and yet still watch your brain convince you that the opposite is true.

My intrusive thoughts have always centered around romantic relationships--or so I thought. I've written volumes about my cyclical thinking (but not so much on here, since it's been largely dormant for the last 9 years or so). 

Interestingly, since I've been in a healthy, stable relationship, the intrusive thoughts have stopped--except where my immediate family is concerned. So that makes me wonder if my intrusive thoughts are actually a form of trauma from my upbringing, and kick into place anytime I bond closely with anyone, romantic or otherwise. 

Thanks for your insight.

I had what could possibly be described as an horrific childhood. I'm actually surprised I'm able to appear as stable as I do. But these things creep out sometimes and remind me I have a lot of messy stuff going on.

Anyway, I didn't shower a third time. I also slept very poorly. Ah well...

But I loved seeing my friends and showing them my city.

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53 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Do you think it was a good thing to stop medication?

Yes, because it was affecting my ability to do my job among other things.

Believe it or not, I am way better than I used to be.  I couldn't even leave home.  I couldn't grocery shop, I was terrified to even just go downstairs to take out the trash.  And now I'm eating in restaurants and roaming around the city and going shopping.  I'm doing all this without the medication.

I just want to get rid of the idea that I can still contract the virus and the idea that it is somehow unsurvivable.  I mean, I had it and already survived so that doesn't make sense.  It's just part of my OCD/intrusive thoughts.  I'll get better.

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On 6/25/2021 at 8:19 PM, boltnrun said:

Yes, because it was affecting my ability to do my job among other things.

Believe it or not, I am way better than I used to be.  I couldn't even leave home.  I couldn't grocery shop, I was terrified to even just go downstairs to take out the trash.  And now I'm eating in restaurants and roaming around the city and going shopping.  I'm doing all this without the medication.

I just want to get rid of the idea that I can still contract the virus and the idea that it is somehow unsurvivable.  I mean, I had it and already survived so that doesn't make sense.  It's just part of my OCD/intrusive thoughts.  I'll get better.

It is good you are doing better. Have you done exposure therapy before? Probably, yes. I find if one is stable enough it is a good way to remove fears. I use it a lot . 

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I feel so much better physically after moving into my own apartment. My brother's wash machine has been leaking water for about 8 years (!) and as a result the floor in the laundry room is permanently waterlogged. So of course there is a LOT of mold. I breathed that mold for 7 months! He never had a repair person look at it because he didn't want to pay for it. Eye roll.

Another reason to be thankful to be in my own place! 

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Grrrr...

So apparently today is a "floating holiday" assigned by the company I'm contracted with.  I worked in the office all day yesterday and no one thought to tell me about the holiday.  So I derp de derped along this morning, getting ready and logging onto my work laptop.  Then I noticed my supervisor and coworkers were all "out of the office".  Hm...so after two hours I did a search on the company intranet.  Wow!  Today is a floating holiday and no one is working!  Gee!

I'm annoyed no one told me and I'm annoyed that I will miss almost an entire day's pay (in addition to no pay on Monday either...I'm a contract worker so I don't get paid holidays).  You better believe I'm billing them for the 2.5 hours I was signed on today!  And my agency gave me the OK to do that.

So I signed off and went to Walmart, which terrifies me lol.  So many people, mostly unmasked (which is allowed if the person is vaccinated...I doubt all of them are).  But I didn't rush home and shower, which is a BIG thing for me.  I changed my clothes and washed my arms up to my elbows and I'll shower before I go to bed.  But this is the first time since the pandemic really got going that I haven't immediately jumped in the shower after shopping.

I am happy about having a 4 day weekend but unhappy about the two small paychecks I'll be getting.

Blech...

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I'm watching a recording of the New York City essential workers thank you parade.  I have to be honest, I'm getting a bit choked up.  These brave people literally saved lives and kept the city going at the risk of their own lives.  I'm pleased to see they included hearse drivers, mortuary workers, sanitation workers, pharmacy workers, child care workers and subway, bus and ferry drivers in additional to doctors, first responders and law enforcement.   They also included what might be considered controversial groups such as day laborers and undocumented workers.  In my opinion they deserve to be included because while I was cowering in my apartment after quitting my essential job, they continued to go to work doing jobs that many people wouldn't want to do such as cleaning the hospital rooms of Covid patients and collecting garbage from the streets.

I wish my city would put on a parade for the essential workers!  I'd be there for sure to show my thanks and so would thousands of other people, I'm sure.

New York got a great turnout of spectators who were all cheering.  Very heart warming.

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I haven't slept well the past couple of nights. No, that's an understatement. I've slept awful. I thought it was because it's hot in my apartment (no AC), but today I've had three trips to the bathroom with diarrhea (sorry for the TMI). Apparently I ate something really bad. That explains why I haven't been able to sleep. My intestinal disorders affect me in many different ways including my ability to sleep. I'm hoping once it all gets out I'll be able to sleep.

Once again, I am very grateful and thankful to be working from home! I can't imagine going through this with the scratchy, thin TP they have at work. That's one thing I never skimp on...quality toilet paper!

 

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So much for my theory about my stomach miseries causing insomnia.  I didn't get much sleep last night either. Maybe 4 hours.

It's not from stopping the medication as that happened almost 2 months ago and I've been sleeping just fine up until this week. So, I don't know.

I can't continue to function on very little sleep. So stupid.

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21 minutes ago, Jibralta said:

Do you have any stressors in your life right now?

Well, yeah. I have anxiety.  But that's nothing new. Certainly not anything additional has occurred. I've actually been doing very well which is why this is so strange. I tapered off the medication almost 2 months ago and since the initial adjustment I've been sleeping very well. I am very hot at night. We are in a heat wave currently so that could be why.  And it could just be good old change of life issues that all us middle aged women get to deal with!

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I found my Ativan prescription! Yes!

I don't want to rely on meds to sleep but my job requires absolute attention to detail. I almost screwed something up today because I'm so sleep deprived I can't focus properly. So I'll take an Ativan tonight and hope this sleep situation gets better over the weekend. If not I will have to find new ways to try to sleep such as relaxation techniques and get back to brisk exercise after work. 

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Well, the Ativan worked. I think I got about 6 1/2 hours of sleep which is great. But I can't take it every day so I must find the root cause of my insomnia and then a solution.

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40 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Maybe it is anxiety because case numbers there are increasing? I had half of my sleeping pill last night and I still didn’t sleep well. 

No, because that doesn't really affect me. I had the viris, I'm fully vaccinated and I have continued to wear my mask while indoors (not at home or in my car lol) and do not go inside anywhere unless I truly need to. So the increase in cases hasn't affected me personally at all.

And I'm not lying awake ruminating about Covid. I just do what I've always done which is review the good points of my day and think about the nice things I have going on in the near future such as my birthday brunch with my kids next week!

I do feel it might be the heat. I am sweaty for the first few hours. So I brought out my tall fan and will be opening some windows to see if that helps.

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5 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Can you get a portable ac? You know the kind where the hose goes in the window ? 

I don't really like those. You have to keep your window open and put boards in, plus they are pricey. And I can't afford a big increase in my electric bill.

I am lucky to have a ceiling fan. And I'm across the street from the ocean so if I just open some windows at night and run the fans it should be ok.

It really doesn't get that hot here. The hottest is only about the high 80s with just a few 90s. Where I used to live it gets up to 117!

And yet another reason I'm glad I moved to my own place. My brother doesn't allow the AC to be run unless it's at least 100 degrees outside and he sets the thermostat to 90 degrees. Oof.

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