Wednesday, July 13, 2016

So, That's What "It" Is

Ever since I was a toddler, I have worried. When the first day of school would start approaching, I would work myself up to the point of making my stomach hurt. My mom would let me stay home and by the second day of school I was fine. I'm sure my friends at school were wondering why I  would always miss the first day. My second grade teacher thought there was something "wrong," with me because I didn't talk. Some of my classmates thought I was "stuck up," because I wouldn't talk to them. As I grew older and starting hosting family gatherings, my worrying would be off the "charts."  Even though I was 100% completely organized, again I would get myself worked up to the point of my stomach hurting. Once everyone would start to arrive I was fine, it was like the worrying was switched, "off." When the hubby and I would get an invitation to a social event, about 3-4 hours ahead of the event, I would start having a headache and a stomachache and would convince my husband to go without me because I didn't feel well. Fast forward to November of  2013. I had an appointment with my primary care doctor and I was telling her how much I had going on in my life.   She diagnosed me with, Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Talk about a "light bulb," moment. After 45 years, I FINALLY had a name for all those feelings, all that worrying. Hurray! Okay, the next decision was to figure out if I wanted to go on medication. Being a fiercely independent person, I thought it meant admitting I couldn't handle "it," by myself. Good grief, it doesn't mean that at all. Being put on two different medications was one of the best decisions I have ever made. It doesn't mean you are admitting defeat and are weak, it means you are strong by doing something to help yourself. I am not a doctor and I know that medication is not for everyone. All I know is that the medication has worked for me, for the past two and half years I have felt more, "balanced." The "worrying," isn't 100% gone, but it is manageable. I think it is good to talk about mental health issues.  I loved it when Kristen Bell, a celebrity recently talked openly about her anxiety.  I admire her even more than I already did for speaking out.  Isn't it about time that we talk about "it?"