Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Let's talk about anxiety

I've mentioned it before here and there, but I've never really gone into detail about my struggle with anxiety.

It started when Bryan and I first moved out on our own, back in 2007. I knew that it was the right thing to do. I was paying rent to live at my parent's house but was still having to live under their rules and curfews. For a girl who had lived on her own for two years prior and then coming back to that, it was very hard. Not to mention when you're 20 years old you think you know everything about everything. So, in November Bryan and I found and moved into our first apartment. It was small, not in the best neighborhood, but it was ours. I was paying rent to come and go as I pleased. I was happy.
[2008 after we moved out together]

In December I noticed I wasn't sleeping very well and found myself many a night falling asleep on the couch watching TV. And the nights that I was falling asleep in my bed [or trying to] my anxiety was so bad, I felt like I couldn't move - I felt trapped - paralyzed - in my own body. I would cry and Bryan would wake up and rub my back, get me water, and assure me that everything would be ok. But again, being this new 'independent' woman that I was, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I read books and internet articles about ways to calm your mind before you go to sleep and ways to relax your body. Nothing worked. My next step was to see one of the doctors I worked for. She prescribed a low dose of Ambien. I loved it at first, It was knocking me out AND helping me stay asleep, I thought it was the wonder drug. Then I started noticing things like I would remember falling asleep on the couch but wouldn't remember waking up to get there and in the morning I felt like I had had a hard night of drinking. I decided this medication was not for me. [If you are on it and love it I'm so happy for you. Unfortunately my body just didn't mesh well with it.]

After much consideration [and a year later without being on anything], I decided to talk with another physician and he ended up prescribing me Lorazepam I feel like it's definitely made my night time anxiety more tolerable however I don't want to be on medications forever, and know for sure I won't be able to/want to be when I get pregnant. I'm still exploring other options such as seeing a therapist to get to the root of what is causing my anxiety and also hypnotherapy; I'll let you know how that goes, not sure when, but hopefully soon.

So what's my point?

Anxiety sucks.

It's embarrassing. It makes me lose sleep. It stresses me out to think about the anxiety  attack I may have tonight before bed.

I'm not exactly sure what causes it or why it happens worse some nights than others, and I hate that I've just dealt with it for this long.

So my question is, have you or anyone you know ever dealt with anxiety? Whether it's during the day or night time, work or every day situations. What were your/their solutions? Was it embarrassing for you/them?
If you don't feel comfortable leaving a comment, please email me at

Thank you so much for letting me be honest with you and for not judging, it means a lot.
Love you all long time.


  1. I have really bad anxiety when I am tired. For some reason I always get really fidgety and sad.

  2. I often have bad anxiety attacks, and when I do I often feel like I can't breathe, I've even come close to passing out from attacks. Or I've been up for hours just thinking about things and won't be able to fall asleep. Like you, its embarrassing to me and I don't like to talk about it, but I've found ways that help me deal with it. I've decided I don't want to take medication for it. After I began seeing a holistic chiropractor, I really don't like taking medication for anything. I've found that exercise, eating right, and taking care of myself are the best ways for me to stay away from anxiety and depression. Talking, as hard as it may be, is always a good solution as well. Let me know if you ever need anything!

  3. Well, I don't have any experience with anxiety, but I do work at GNC and they sell some products some customers swear by. They are calm-u-nat and calms forte.
    I'm sorry you have to struggle with this! I can't even imagine.

  4. I had no idea! I hope you get to the root of the cause!

    My first roommate in an apartment often had nightmares that she believed were the result of her first college boyfriend being abusive towards her. They might have been anxiety attacks since her boyfriend-now-husband woke her up and calmed her just like how Bryan calmed you. She was encouraged to go to a therapist (including by me when we were friends) but apparently it didn't work or she didn't want to go back after a couple sessions.

    Anyway, I hope you get the help you need and want. :)

  5. My MIL only sleeps a few hours a night because she's stays up worrying about everything. It makes me sad for her and I wish she'd get some help. Josh says she's been like that forever. I get anxious about all the bad things and the world and the what ifs and occasionally about life's generalities. I usually eat to cope with it which is horrible and is why I gained so much when I was pregnant (most anxious time of my life) and can't lose all that baby weight now. But when I don't eat, going on long walks really helps... going on a drive... writing... listening to really good music... or, honestly, reading blogs were I can momentarily escape into someone else's life and forget about my own and what's bugging me.

  6. I think you are wonderfully brave for sharing your struggle with anxiety...and I'm sure your honesty will touch more people than you know!

  7. Oh Amanda, I totally know how you feel. In HS I went through a pretty traumatizing experience, I had to see a psychologist and be on medication for 3 years. Anxiety I have found is not something to hide or be ashamed of. i still deal with it on a normal basis, it might not ever go away. But always, always seeking help for it is the right thing to do!

  8. Girl, you are NOT alone! I've battled anxiety off-and-on for the last six years--it came into my life out of nowhere, and I have no logical explanation for the cause of it either. I often find myself getting embarrassed about my battles too, and my hubs has a hard time relating to me during those anxious times. I've never taken medication for mine, I'm old school in my opinion on that subject I suppose. I take the "tough it out" approach, which usually works for me. Good luck in your search for a remedy! I'll be thinkin' about you!

  9. You have NO idea how much this absolutely touched my heart you guys. Thank you so much for your inspiring/encouraging/helpful tips and words. I love you all THIS much [Blogger can't capture how much that is but it's a lot] It's just something that I struggle with daily and figured I couldn't be the only one right? Here's to all of us finding remedies that fit ourselves :)

  10. I've experienced anxiety on and off through my life (when I was younger it was related to my vomit-phobia but in later years it had much more to do with Ansley being sick). The thing that helps me the most, as weird as it sounds, is aromatherapy. Not like anything official, but just calming scents. For example, I had a watch that belonged to my mom that smelled like her perfume that really calmed me down, or anything from Bath and Body Works that smelled like cucumber melon. Smelling those things along with doing movement (simple stretches or yoga) really helped me with my attacks. Good luck in your search! I know how much it sucks. Hang in there Amanda!

  11. I've spent quite a few nights sleepless with anxiety and barely fending off a full blown panic attack. Usually mine starts with racing thoughts that I just can't stop and that tumble into ridiculous things as I get more and more upset. Example: we have a lot of bridges around here. When that bridge collapsed in MN a few years ago, I spent several nights (ok, weeks of nights) practically shaking with fear about how I would I possibly save all 3 kids if our truck when off a bridge into the icy river. I mean, besides the fear, I'm sitting there plotting out how to ask hubby to devise auto-pontoons for our vehicles and install insta-life-vests in their carseats without sounding like a quack. (never did find an answer to that one!)

    Honestly, I've been on meds before (after my parents accident while I was pregnant) and if it helps--awesome! Now I fight through it with faith. Truly. When it starts I either get up and read the bible until I'm able to "reset" my mind and try going to bed again or I recite a bible verse (I've memorized several directly related to my fears) over and over until I fall asleep. It's like a reboot for your overworked brain. It helps me break out of the racing thoughts spiral. I don't think TV can do the same thing because you can watch mindlessly. You need something that completely draws your mind out of that pattern.

    Feel free to email if you want to chat more. Mine's mostly at night, or certain moments (like driving across bridges) and it's fear driven (although not necessarily a reasonable or natural fear). Figuring out the root worries might be very helpful.