My Journey With Anxiety...
I’ve written and deleted this post about 15 times. Do I share too much, just enough or nothing?? And here is my anxiety kicking again.. ahh. Anxiety is so different for so many people, and for me this is how I struggle and cope…
If you know me personally, you know that I struggle with anxiety everyday. It was something that has been with me my whole life. I was always the sibling or friend who “worried too much” or was always way too cautious. Not that any of those are negative things, but it’s traits I’ve always had and stuck with me. I would have friends and family tell me that I was a “chicken” for not doing this or that, or that I was a “worry wart”. It doesn’t bother me now, but thats just how I was and still am! I have always kept to myself and have been extremely conscious of how people think of me.
It’s an ongoing battle in my head that didn’t just go away after I had Charles. I had a hard time postpartum. I was living in a town that I knew no one, I was across the country from my “home”, I was struggling to keep myself sane being a new mother and I just felt alone. The weird thing is though, is that I had so much love around me, we always had people over wanting to help or hang out!
A couple days after Charles was born and the adrenaline wore off and exhaustion kicked in is when I really started to be triggered. I would have visions (out of no where!!) of horrible things happening and I would constantly go into panic attacks out of nowhere. It was scary and I felt so out of place. I struggled hard with breastfeeding. I would often lay awake at all hours of the night on Google trying to find reasons why I wasn’t producing enough and why his latch just wasn’t right. I was scared, if I couldn’t breastfeed I would feel like I was failing my baby (which I know now is totally untrue.) I had so much mom guilt… it was tough and it made my anxiety heighten to the highest it’s ever been.
After we moved back to Vancouver is when I hoped that my anxiousness would dissipate and it did… not a lot, but enough to realize that my panic attacks and constant worrying wasn’t normal. Maybe it was hormones levelling out and being more comfortable with my new role as a mother. Or, it could have been that I was “home” again and felt more comfortable in my surroundings.
This journey is still very much ongoing and I’ve found so many excellent ways to keep my anxiety at bay. Here is a short, but sweet list of things I do to help balance myself:
Keep a routine.
This one is important for me. Pre-baby I always had a routine; gym, coffee, home, shower, work, etc.
Keeping on a routine really helped keep me focused when I was going through some really hard times.
Working out/Getting active
For me, this has ALWAYS been big. Keeping active while listening to my favourite music has been key to keep me happy and have a healthy mind.
Talking about it.
This one is easier said than done. Communicating with Kevin when I was feeling overwhelmed, scared or uneasy about something has been a game changer for me. I never realized the power of “getting something off my chest” until I actually started implementing it. Seeking professional help is always an option as well, and not something to be ashamed of.
Breathing, Meditating and Yoga.
During University I worked in a Hot Yoga Studio (a couple actually) and I often practised yoga when I had the time. When I start to feel anxious or panicked I often take deep breaths, close my eyes and refocus my energy. Sounds really hippy-ish, but it helps! I often practise this when I am frustrated with Charles and need to take a moment.
Thank you for following along and listening to my journey. Being open and authentic is something I want my platform to be based on, so I am happy to be sharing this and I hope that some of the things that help me, might help someone else!
What are some things that help ease your mind when you’re feeling anxious?!