Monday, May 25, 2015

Birthday blahs.

These days, I am really liking my time alone.

I remember when my anxiety was super horrible, I hated being alone. I would do all sorts of things to comfort myself so I could just get through a day at home alone (working, of course, but still alone).

These days, I need more time to recoup from being around certain people. Their energy is draining. And this is hard because I like to relish the time I have with people, because I know it's fleeting. All the same, I want to relish my life and enjoy it. Sometimes, that means being alone.

Tomorrow, I turn 37. I have mixed feelings about it. I've never liked birthdays. A few years ago, Tim and I started doing something fun for my birthday, just the two of us. It helps me think of the day as "remember that time we did..." instead of just it being my birthday. After all, a day is just a day. It is precious, but so is every other day when you think about it.

Friday, May 1, 2015

LIsten up, self.

Panic disorder is like an unpacified child. In my early days dealing with it, I went with the flow and cried like the cranky child projecting outward from within me. These days, I just get upset when my panic starts to activate.

My latest episodes aren't full-on panic attacks, they're just waves of panic, if that's possible. They're kind of a nuisance.

They're also trying to tell me something, and I have to listen up as annoying as they can be.

(Granted, I'm glad that panic waves can be annoying compared to living many years ago with ongoing full-blown attacks that I couldn't control...)

My therapist used to tell me that when life got stressful, my anxiety levels--and likelihood of attacks, waves, whatever you want to call them--would skyrocket too. This was novel to me at the time.

Now I recognize the signs.

Sure, these aren't horrible panic attacks, but I think they are telling me that I really need to make self-care a priority. I need to turn up the dial on Kristen time. That's so hard right now because I am slammed with work and have a number of issues going on in the lives of people close to me. Everyday, I have to weed out the things I can and cannot deal with--and I have to do it all with a demanding work schedule.

Point is, I'm still learning how to manage it to balance.

It doesn't just "come" to you, learning how to balance. It's a conscious choice we have to make during the day. Too much stress? Dial up self-care. Self feeling okay? It's okay to push a little on work/personal obligations.

So...I'm going with it, consciously balancing--and re-balancing--myself.