Huff and Puff

This is a Really Real Health post.
 
TW: Weight mentioned
 
Before quarantined life, I had started putting on weight. It wasn’t so much about the numbers on the scale as it was that I could feel it in my body. I was less flexible. It was harder to do things.
 
Then I became a shut in to save the world and the weight has been adding up more and more. I have a hard time with my shoes again. Moving around is harder. I feel it in my joints.
 
Early on, I tried walking but our neighborhood is busy during the day. I felt like I was zigzagging all over the place to stay away from people, none of whom tried to stay away from me. It took all of the joy out of the walk when I had to be hyper-vigilant for who was going to walk up on me next.
 
I stopped walking.
 
I kept eating, and eating, and eating.
 
I keep telling myself it’s not about the numbers on the scale, while also refusing to get on a scale because I’m afraid of what I’ll see. I feel it in my clothes, though. I see it in my face.
 
I feel it everywhere.
 
So yesterday I went out around 9pm and started walking. The streets were mostly empty. I talked on the phone to a good friend for the entire 1.5 miles or so. She didn’t mind my huffing and puffing luckily.
 
Tonight I needed to pick up a prescription, so I walked to CVS and asked Sarah Jane to pick me up once I got there. I could have done the round trip a year ago, but today even the 2 miles felt like it was pushing it. It hurt. I still hurt.
 
But, that’s 2 days in a row.
 
The way I did this the first 2 times was by celebrating every small victory. Today’s victory is that even though I’ve spent a lot of the day in bed due to boredom and depression, I got my ass up and walked tonight.
 
Lets see if I can keep this up.
 
If anyone feels like keeping me long distance company on my walks around 9 or 10 at night, let me know and we can plan a night for me to call. Hope you don’t mind listening to me huff and puff though. Otherwise I have plenty of music to listen to.
 
Gold Star for me, 2 days in a row, even though I didn’t want to.

I’m Tired

This is a Really Real Mental Health post.

This time last year I was intensely suicidal. I was tired of fighting the thoughts that so often wanted to kill me. I was tired of being in pain.

I was tired.

This year, comparatively, I’m doing really well. I don’t really get all that suicidal all that often. My pain is somewhat controlled. I’m relatively stable.

But.

I am tired.

I’m tired of being inside. I’m tired of not going to the gym. I’m tired of missing my friends. I’m tired of hearing about people who aren’t even trying. I’m tired of working. I’m tired of avoiding the world.

I’m tired.

I’m tired.

I’m tired.

And this time I know I’m not alone. I know there are lots of us that are tired.

And it’s still not fair.

None of us deserve this right now. None of us were prepared for it. None of us should have to learn to live with it.

But most of us are learning to live with it. We are doing what we’re supposed to do.

Those that aren’t, piss me off. The more we leave our houses the longer this will take, and it’s going to take a long while as it is.

Stay the fuck home.

I’m tired.

I’m tired of living in this world even though I’m not tired of living.

I’m tired.

I’m tired of not being able to write because there’s no life to write about.

I’m tired.

I am tired.

Am I becoming who I was?

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

There was a time in my life where I never left my computer chair.

I barely ever left the house because the world was too scary.

I worked hard to leave that version of me behind.

I worked so very hard.

But now staying home is the best thing I can do, the best thing for everyone. But I live in a tiny apartment that has way too much stuff. I spend all my time in my computer chair, working, crafting, gaming, talking to friends and family. I stay busy, but I stay in this chair.

I try to get out for a walk but the weather doesn’t want to cooperate. It’s getting easier and easier to make excuses.

I hurt. My joints remind me of what it was like to stay inside all day. My joints remind me that even though this is what we’re supposed to be doing, it’s very much like what I did before.

Not leaving the house for days at a time is one of the worst things I can do for my mental health.

And my physical health.

I feel myself stiffening up. My joints no longer wanting to move. My body no longer wanting to venture outside of these four walls. How much of it is emotional? How much is physical?

This is it’s own special kind of hell for someone who was once agoraphobic. I feel the old anxieties creeping back. It’s not safe out there. It’s safer to stay inside.

There was a time in my life when I never left my computer chair.

I barely ever left the house because the world was too scary.

I hate that I’m becoming that person again.

Even if it’s for a good reason.

So Much Anxiety

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

I’m full of anxiety, mostly about work.

The kind of anxiety that makes me feel like I can’t breathe.

The kind of anxiety I remember from when I was a little kid.

That

“I fucked up”

anxiety.

Except I don’t think I’ve actually fucked anything up. Either way, I’m doing the best I can given the circumstances.

But I can’t shake this overwhelming feeling that

I

Fucked

Up.

It’s like waiting for the other shoe to drop. Except I’m waiting for someone to told me I singlehandedly destroyed it all.

But I’m not that powerful.

I can’t save it, and I can’t destroy it.

I can just keep doing what I’m doing. Pushing papers, writing posts, trying to learn things that I’ve never done before. Trying to keep doing the next right thing.

It’s not my place to save the world.

I’m not that powerful.

But this overwhelming anxiety is locking me in place. I can’t catch my breath, even when I slow down my breathing. Even when I focus on just sitting with the feelings and letting them pass through. Even when I try to remain rooted in this moment. Even when.

My chest is heavy. The ativan isn’t working.

This is SO HARD.

I still can’t believe I took a mental health day today, but I can’t imagine being able to focus on work in this state.

All I can hope is that I can get it back under wraps by tonight, because I have to go back to working sometime, and I don’t feel like this anxiety is going to end anytime soon.

I feel like it’s a part of this new normal we’re living in.

Writing that brought tears to my eyes.

This overwhelming feeling of panic could be here to stay while the world figures out how to exist like this. This discomfort could be a part of me for the foreseeable future.

That is hard shit. But if I can’t run from it, I have to learn how to exist with it. How to make it less debilitating.

I need it to stop raining so I can go for a walk.

I need to stop drinking so much caffeine, that isn’t helping for sure.

I guess it’s time to take another ativan while I figure out how to weave this discomfort into my life. How to exist around it and through it.

If it isn’t going away for awhile, I guess it’s time to make friendly with the weight on my shoulders, the pressure in my chest, the never ending thoughts in my brain.

Maybe it’s time that we coexist.

Hi, old friend, lets chat.

Work, work, work, work, work.

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

I should be thankful that I still have a job. Many of my friends don’t.

But I’m stuck wondering, just how important is it to repair scratches and dents on cars when the world as we know it is changing. Just how important is a fancy ride.

So I’m having a hard time focusing on the billing and the blog posts and the appointment setting. I’m having a hard time focusing on the advertising and the website and the SEO.

I’m having a hard time focusing.

I should be thankful that I still have a job. Many of my friends don’t.

And honestly, the work I’m doing is keeping others employed. If I don’t bill, if I don’t advertise, if I don’t help draw in more business, the few employees the company has, won’t have a job much longer.

I’m helping out in my own little way.

I’m frustrated that I just started working before this. I mean, two months ago I wouldn’t have had this additional worry on my plate.

But I guess working is a good thing. It takes up a chunk of my day that would otherwise be unfilled. Once I can get myself focused on work, it takes my focus off of worry and anxiety and panic about the state of the world. Work gives me a purpose.

I’m thankful that I still have a job. Many of my friends don’t.

Today my boss dropped off my paycheck. The biggest one I’ve gotten to date. I feel accomplished every time I get paid. I feel like I’m a contributing member of society.

So I guess I’m lucky that I started working before life changed so drastically for all of us. I guess I’m lucky to have work to turn to, to focus on. I’m lucky that I have a job I was already doing from home. I’m lucky.

And I’m thankful.

But I think I forget that part.

I get so wrapped up in the anxiety and the panic and the “how can I focus on this when that is happening all around us” that I forget how much I really enjoy this job.

How much it means to me.

It’s easier to get overwhelmed right now. Easier to be overcome by anxiety when my boss is giving me a never ending list of things that need to be done. And maybe I should ask him to give me lists in shorter bursts.

But I’m thankful that I still have a job.

Still a Widow

This is a Really Real Widow Post.

I wonder how she’d be handling this?

We didn’t leave the house for weeks at a time when we were at our worst, but I still wonder how Parker would have reacted to a pandemic and social distancing?

How would she have reacted when we lived in florida and we were close to her friends? Would that have made a difference? We were pretty isolated up here anyway, we didn’t really spend time with anyone.

How would she have calmed my fears? What jokes would she have made? Would she have broken down?

She was always the stronger one from the outside looking in.

What foods would she want, knowing we needed to shop as little as possible? Which comfort meals would she want me to cook?

What kind of order would she need around the house?

We were used to being in the same space all of the time. That was our normal. Neither of us could work most of the time, neither of us had lives outside of our home. We were inseparable to a fault. That would have come in handy right now.

I also wonder how horrible this would have been if we lived in the homeless shelter while this was happening?

What precautions are they putting in place?

How scary is it there right now, knowing that this could infect the entire shelter in a matter of days? So many vulnerable people in such a small space.

I’m so thankful my life is where it’s at right now. I’m glad I live in my own space. I’m glad I can buy groceries. I’m glad I don’t have to worry about keeping the lights on.

I’m thankful she’s missing this particular part of life. I’m glad she doesn’t have to struggle through this. She doesn’t have to be afraid that her mom will get sick, or her aunts. She doesn’t have to worry about losing a friend or loved one.

Widowhood is in every facet of my life. It’s always there, quietly whispering. It’s here too. It’s in the middle of a worldwide crisis. It’s in the middle of social distancing. It’s in the middle of a pandemic.

It’s always with me, and it makes me wonder.

Welp, This is no fun

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

Is it just me, or does this shit suck?

I’m well aware that it isn’t just me.

But I think the universe is telling us to slow down. To focus on what matters. To help each other out.

That’s what it’s going to take to get us through this.

And I’m seeing a whole lot of good. Teachers that are offering to help parents who are suddenly homeschoolers, friends who are spreading loving words, people who are offering food to those who may not have it, others who are offering to get food for those who are sick.

This shit sucks.

And we’re all feeling it.

Today I found out my mental health team basically fell apart. I won’t have any sort of therapy for the foreseeable future. My psychiatrist hasn’t returned my phone calls for the past week.

I’m worried.

I’m trying not to panic.

I’m trying to remember that I’ve been through worse, even though it’s been nothing like this.

I’m not sure anything compares to this.

I’m not sure anything ever will.

But one day at a time, we’ll get through this. And I’ll survive a few weeks without therapy. Eventually I’ll get a hold of someone (my pdoc or my regular doc) who will write my psych meds.

Eventually this will pass.

It may pass like a kidney stone, but it will pass.