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Trying/Not Trying

October 5, 2018

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So what have I been doing? Losing my damn mind. No, seriously.

Somewhere between my mom’s last days and her death and getting kicked out of my apartment and having to get rid of my dog and deciding to live in an RV and dispose of most of my worldly belongings, I lost it.

Then this jackass at the mortuary called me to tell me that my mom was next up to be cremated. “We’ll be doing it within the hour,” he said. It hit me like a speeding truck. I started howling from all the way down around my ankles. It was something I hadn’t been expecting to be told, and I didn’t want to know, and it shook my bones and tore me UP.

(He wasn’t supposed to call me. It was a mistake. That did not make me feel better).

I wasn’t going to write about this. I went out of work on disability, you see, and I was worried what work would think if all that was wrong with me is that I was crying pretty much all the time, unable to think or focus, and completely miserable in every aspect. WHAT A WIMP, I KNOW.

I spent Labor Day weekend sobbing. The thought of returning to work made me panic and shake and sweat. I could not face trying to work and making mistake on top of mistake, which I had been doing the whole week before. I knew I had to do something, anything. I make a doctor appointment for Tuesday, calling as soon as their office opened, and I took the day off.

I spent the doctor visit failing at trying not to cry. She agreed I might be a little wound up. She recommended therapy and exercise and journaling and spending time outside, and told me to take at least 2 weeks off.

I spend the two weeks not doing much. Not journaling, not exercising, but sobbing less and meditating more.

About that time, I saw this video, and began to suspect I may have anxiety. Why? Because all the stuff in this video just seemed normal to me. I had no idea it was something everyone didn’t do.

I found a therapist who diagnosed me with depression and anxiety, but who gave me hope for the first time that something could be done.

I have learned that thinking terrible things are going to happen all the time isn’t normal! Like my employer may actually UNDERSTAND that people have mental health issues and need time off to heal.

So I have been living with a kind friend, helping her walk her dogs, and learning to relax.

This is something my therapist insists I need to do. She says it is my job for now. I ask her how I can do better at relaxing, how I can try harder, and she tells me that’s not the tack I should be taking.

So here I am, trying not to relax too hard. Trying not to try to relax. Relaxing.

And guess what? I have started enjoying myself. In little flashes, in small moments, I’m relaxed and happy.

I could have a life I love. It seems that might be possible for me. Who knew? Please let me know if you have any advice about relaxing. I want to be sure to score 100% if there is a test.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. October 6, 2018 15:50

    Oh Sue. Your mom and Abbie and your apartment. It’s so much. Under the circumstances, depression and anxiety are pretty reasonable responses. Who wouldn’t come unglued after that? Sociopaths, that’s who. I am glad you are doing better, but it’s okay if you’re still not fine sometimes.

    • October 8, 2018 08:31

      Thank you. I am learning a lot about my capacity for change. I am trying to think of that as a good thing. Mmmm hmmm

  2. October 7, 2018 03:00

    Sooo sorry you are going through all this. I deal with my pain and anxiety by watching ASMR videos on youtube. My favorite ones are by Emma WhispersRed. If you search youtube for ASMR you’ll find others that you might like as well. There’s a gal named Maria who is also great.Some of the videos I just put my headphones on and listen til I fall asleep, others I find relaxing to watch. Hope that helps. Sending you all good vibes for things to get better.

    • October 8, 2018 08:33

      Ironically, I find ASMR irritating. I know a lot of people are soothed by it. Instead, I listen to people with lovely British accents on the Insight meditation app. I never thought I would be able to fall asleep with someone talking, but I was wrong!

  3. October 7, 2018 14:43

    Mental health is important (I have been trying to improve on it too). I have the same issue with relaxing; I try too hard to relax, and keep trying to figure out how to do it better.

  4. byjane permalink
    October 8, 2018 11:09

    I love your desire to score 100% on relaxing. Of course you do. Me too. And that’s unusual? I’m glad you found a therapist you connected with. That’s sometimes hard. It is, I’ve learned after all these years, a never-ending process.

    • October 8, 2018 12:18

      Yes, I have been through quite a few. This one is…ok. I would give her three stars. I think the difference now is I’m so desperate that I’m willing to try harder to like her.

  5. October 8, 2018 11:49

    Big kudos for getting the care you need. I’m so glad you’re in a better spot, and really appreciate your openness.

    • October 8, 2018 12:19

      It took me a while to get around to openness, but I can’t help myself, really.

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