Yesterday I was able to talk my way through an issue of mine which made me feel proud. I was actually reflecting on my attitude from Friday and earlier that morning when I realized how quickly certain symptoms come back when I forget to take my medication (I realized I forgot it Friday and then Saturday morning so I took it right after I had this realization).
When I don’t take my medication, I quickly go back to being very irritable which is my main symptoms of anxiety. I get easily overwhelmed and I start re-prioritizing without sound thinking which in turn overwhelms me more.
Long story short, the sink had dishes, the garbage in the kitchen was full, and I had laundry to do. Mind you, it’s like 10am and I don’t have any other plans for the day, so it wasn’t a big deal, but to me without medication, it’s a HUGE deal! I always have this problem where if there’s something I have control over and I don’t control it I start having negative self talk and everything feels like the end of the world.
Later on I started talking to my boyfriend about it because I kept saying how I wanted to find the root issue as to why I am this way, and all I could remember is that I always had to finish my homework before I could go outside. Now that may not sound like a big thing, and it teaches kids priorities and responsibilities when you have them finish school work before they can play with their friends, but my mind got stuck in that pattern.
In my unmedicated mind, I have to do the dishes/laundry/garbage right away before I can move on and do anything else because those are things that HAVE to be done; but would it really make a difference if I did it two hours later? or six hours later? Or broke up the tasks? No, it really wouldn’t. Lucky for me, I was able to realize this.
As a child, I wasn’t given the option to do homework later after dinner or after playing outside, so I had no way to know if doing it at another time would affect my grades or really anything. For as long as I can remember, anytime I change up a routine I get super anxious and I’m just on edge because I have no idea really what to expect. I like having routine and knowing my tasks and following them because that means (to me) that everything will likely be safe and sound.
I know this is all a minuscule issue compared to many others associated with anxiety disorder, but for me to make this connection/realization and be able to actually take a second and think “why do I feel like this?” is something to be proud of! When in an anxious state of mind it is hard to pause and rationalize, but it is so important to do- even if it is minutes, hours or even days later.
The only way to move forward is to address the triggers from the past, face them, and keep walking.