Saturday, March 22, 2014

Thoughts.

I have so many profound thoughts related to anxiety and healing. I just can't always blog about them. So most of my good content runs through my head....and then, poof, it's gone. Your getting ripped off then, eh?

I have been thinking a lot lately about change. I feel so much calmer in the past few years. Things that used to destroy me bounce off more easily. I have less patience though, for people who still flip out. Who haven't done their healing...I mean the ones who haven't even tried.

So much of healing comes with making conscious decisions. That's easy for most people but when you're in the hold of anxiety, you can't think straight you are perpetually frazzled. Breaking that cycle is key.  For me, it required medication....then when calm and thinking more calmly, therapy really started to work well.

I was dealing with someone today that is in it. And can't really make conscious decidions. It's sad and I feel for this person. At ty he same time, when life isn't uprooted, this person doesn't make much of an effort to heal. Or to consciously, perhaps it the by little,  attempt healthy thought patterns and actions. That's hard to deal with...and hard to see that I was there in many ways. Nor so long ago really.

Look, I don't want to knock anybody....no matter where they are in their healing. These are just things I've been thinking and noiticing. I am better, but boy I don't forget what it was like to be in that cycle. But I can say it's possible to at least see out...and to get out.

If you're there "in it," please know I am wishing you a bold, brave and positive journey to a happier, more peaceful life.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

It's all about balance.

Life is all about balance. Tug, release. Grip, let go. You have to know when to go for it, and when to surrender.

Lately, I'm learning a lot about that...surrender. I got to speak with Judith Orloff the other day, who has a new book on surrender. I realize that I have really learned to let go a lot, especially over the past few years. The things that used to cause me to freak (and then lead to panic) don't get me as much. I try to keep my stress levels down so they don't turn into anxiety and panic. Once you can break the panic cycle and get your head clear a little, it's easier to find your way out. Of course, getting to that great point of pause, or clarity, or maybe even getting through a day or week without a panic attack can be hard for a lot of people. I used to be there, panicking frequently. At the height of my illness, multiple times a day. The rest, when not "in" an attack was spent fearing another.

Some things I am good at surrendering. Others, well, there is still room for improvement. I'm trying to surrender feelings of when I want something so bad and get frustrated. Today I just wanted to sit in a cafe and browse magazines or write. I couldn't really give myself that today for a few reasons, so I just had to let go. Accept. Deal. But I did make the time to sit in my bedroom, where I am now, in the quiet, and write. So I'm giving into that little inner child who just wanted to laze around all day.

Right now, my mother is staying with us. My poor mom has had three knee replacements in the past two and a half years. The first one was poor-managed and grew scar tissue. They replaced it again (after going to a new doctor) and then had to "manipulate it" after to make sure scarring didn't occur again. My mom had her knee surgery three weeks ago and I'm hoping we are working it enough so she doesn't have to go back to be knocked out and have her leg bent back again.

I like having my mother here, but I'm not used to another person in the house. It kind of makes me wonder how I lived with her and my sister growing up. My husband works much of the day, so I'm used to spending a large part of it alone. This is something I need to surrender to. Right now, I don't have a lot of alone time. But I can make some semi-alone time. (My mom is cool, she gives me space and isn't super needy.) Still, having someone else here takes some getting used to. In other words, it's all about balance. Take some time out for me, make some time with her. I'm trying to take advantage of her visit too--do things we don't normally get to do.

When someone else is around you that normally isn't, you realize how much you relish your alone time. Not that you don't want to be around them, you just realize how much you come to like being alone. To having time to do whatever you want. I think this week I'll make some time to get out of the house. Go somewhere alone. I want my mom around, but I need that sense of self too.

It's all about balance.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

How we spend our days.





Listening . . . To my iTunes mix titled, "Pretty." It's all slow, singer/songwriter type of stuff. Jillian Edwards, Tristan Prettyman, Jon McLaughlin, Ben Rector...

Eating . . . Well, drinking. Costco organic lemonade watered way down...it's quite sour but tasty.


Wearing . . . Fleece pajama bottoms and a sweatshirt. It's 6 p.m. and I'm done for the day. It was so cold and windy...the kind of day that makes it okay to come home and get in your jammies early.

Wanting . . . Time to work on writing my book. Or read someone else's.

Needing . . .Yoga. Always, always need the yoga.

Thinking . . . About this weird fear I have that I'll die before I can publish my passion project.

Feeling . . .  Relaxed. Nice afternoon in the quiet living room. Music is on. No TV. Unplugging, somewhat.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Old fear seems new.

Today, anxiety isn't sweat and rapid heartbeat. It is a dull ache that's sore to the touch. It's old fear. The kind that doesn't feel old. It feels like you're still feeling it for the first time. The kind that puts you right back into feeling like you're in the middle of a breakdown or a slump.

It's a gnawing anxiety, the kind that erodes your gut. The kind that makes it so very hard to see clearly, albeit positively.

And it's a reminder that this is a very real condition. That no matter how much we heal, sometimes we just have to accept that this is what we experience, no matter how strong we are.


Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Healing music: Britt Nicole

Without a doubt, I was in love the first time I heard her on the radio. I was just coming out of a slump and listening to the radio a lot to help me feel more comfortable home alone. (Sometimes I just need that background noise, since I work from home solo!)

Anyways, I was listening to SiriusXM The Message, and then came this song.

"All This Time" by Britt Nicole

(This is a great acoustic version!)

Britt says she wrote the song about dealing with her parents' divorce as a child. When I listened to the words, it reminded me of something so true in my life--God has always been a part of it, even during the worst times. It specifically reminded me of being around when my parents would fight a lot--that was during a very traumatic part of my life that triggered a lot of my anxiety as an adult. Yet even then, I knew I was protected. I knew I was watched over.

"Gold" by Britt Nicole is another great track because she sings about self-worth. And how we're all better than gold. Couldn't be further than the truth, even when we feel ridden with anxiety.


It's hard to pick my favorite Britt song, but "The Lost Get Found" by Britt Nicole is quite the inspiration. I hope to do with this blog--and someday, a book on anxiety--what Britt has done with her music. Reach people, inspire them, and give them hope. If I can't do that with my blog, hopefully these songs help you as you continue on your journey. And you don't have to be a "religious type" to experience the benefits from these positive songs--whatever you believe is cool, just give them a listen and let the soothing begin.




Britt, thank you for your awe-inspiring music--I know people with anxiety disorders will really be able to relate to your genuine nature and positive messages.

What songs help you heal?

Monday, March 3, 2014

Colors of winter.

The joy of missing out.

Love a good buzzword.

And today, kids, this one is rocking my socks: Joy of Missing Out. JOMO.

Like FOMO, which is Fear of Missing Out. But with JOMO, you just want to stay in, grab a cup of chai and curl up with a book. Or sit in the tub and doze off. Or cancel all those "gotta do" plans and just, well, as Sarah says, unfurl.

We must miss out to experience joy.
You might have noted my call to arms of late. I’m really getting heavy on the importance of taking responsibility for our own peace and happiness. It’s imperative that we reclaim ourselves and not seek answers from others and other things. Missing out – deliberately so – is part of this. --Sarah Wilson


I like plans. I'm a pretty social person. But sometimes, I'm kind of like a turtle and I just want to stay in my shell. Usually, that's my house. Sometimes, a shell is a mood, or a specific room. There's a joy in letting ourselves just be. And in missing out on the things that our minds (and society) tells us we should be doing.

A few years ago, I was an avid FOMO sufferer. And then, well, I don't know, things changed. I started giving myself permission to enjoy things. And I looked at all the people around me, going going going. Searchcing for the next thrill and missing the simple beauty of being still. Or just not rushing to be everywhere. Enjoying one event a week instead of eight. That's simplicity. That's what I've manifested.

To me, JOMO is sort of an acceptance. That life doesn't have to be what everyone else says is cool. That you can just do your own thing. No freaking pressure, man. I'm all over that kind of simplicity. Doesn't mean I sit on my butt and do nothing...just means it's okay if I do. And not cuz I'm lazy, but because I'm over the whole, "It's Saturday, I should be out!" thing. I just got tired of putting that pressure on myself. In fact, I go out more now than I used to, so I'm definitely still social. I'm just not out to be everywhere and everything to everyone else. I'm sticking to number one...meaning, me. And that doesn't mean I'm not considerate of others or don't want to be with others. I just take care of myself more.

I'm not quite sure how I arrived here, but it's a lovely freaking view. When you feel joy in taking care of yourself and not comparing yourself to others, there is so much freedom and growth in that. There is so much growth in being able to turn inwards. In being able to be comfortable in your own skin. I love that.

Are you in FOMO of JOMO mode?