Tag Archives: anxiety

Fears & Tears.

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Fears & Tears.

I haven’t cried that hard in almost two months…and rightfully so when we had to say goodbye to my husband’s father…a man who loved me like one of his own. We all have shed a few tears or had utter meltdowns since that day, but last night…was rough.

It wasn’t about my Father-in-law…or maybe it has something to do with it. The crying, sadness, occasional fighting over the “why’s” and feeling lost at random moments, have added a new layer of stress to life…stress that cannot even be compared to what my Mother-in-law must be facing…

So last night.

I am sharing/writing this in hopes of maybe figuring this out or seeking help, and also to cleanse my soul.

Our son.

He is beautiful. He is brilliant. He is funny. He is tough.

But not last night.

Over the course of this month he has spiraled into one gigantic hot mess.

He was soooo excited when I took the Halloween decorations out at the beginning of October. He didn’t like some of them, but moved on.

We went out over the next few weeks to the drug store, or dollar store, or even a grocery store and Halloween was everywhere. “I don’t like dat” was his first comment when he saw some scary things.

Fast forward to yesterday in K-Mart, he sat in the cart, covered his face the ENTIRE time we were in the store, even after many attempts to reassure him we were far away from the scary stuff…He did peek at Christmas things, and then went right back to hiding.

We no longer can go into one of his favorite stores after he froze with sheer fear and panic at skeletons hanging from the ceiling.

AND to top all these very long, confusing, frustrating and very heartbreaking outings…there was last night.

We decided to forget cooking after a long week already, (and it was only Wednesday), and take the kids to a bar/restaurant that we haven’t gone to in a while.

A nice friendly Irish family restaurant in town…that had a few Halloween decorations as you entered the building.

PANIC. TREMBLING. SWEATING. CRYING. YELLING. FEAR.

Our son froze…our two daughters were shocked at his behavior but quickly stepped in to help coax him out of it with toys and coloring and even some French fries…

Nothing…

We contemplated leaving.

But what about the two kids inside who were so excited to go out to eat? And a flabbergasted husband who hasn’t seen this side of his son to this extreme…

I took him into the car, to cool himself and myself off((him-literally. Me-figuratively). He had been clutching me for about ten minutes and shaking and dripping with sweat.

When we returned, people from the bar came over to offer help and give him  lollipop or be funny…nothing worked.

We decided that the majority had to eat, as it was getting late, so we asked to move our table(we had been seated near the entrance and could see some of the decorations…and the waitress even took one down for him that looked the scariest) and quickly finish our meal. Our son refused to remove his body from mine and refused to remove his hand from his eyes and refused to eat or drink. He sat there for another twenty minutes, sweating and shaking…I tried to quietly tell him of all the things around him ( a window, a ketchup bottle, his napkin, his sister across from him)so there were no surprises when he chose to look around.

He refused.

We got him out to the car finally after my husband and girls quickly ate their meals.

He was fine…perfectly fine.

Once he was buckled in his car seat and we started for home, he exclaimed he wanted “Zert”. He cannot go to bed without dessert every night. We sighed and said ok, but you have to eat your dinner first  (that was kindly packed up by our very flustered waitress), and he said “ok, I am so, so hungry!”….

I couldn’t help myself.

Maybe it was because I was hungry, or had a cocktail before we had left the house for dinner…but I cried like a baby last night.

I acted like I was ok, and ran up to my room and sobbed.

Is this normal? Did we, as parents, fail him and not do the right thing? Should we have left immediately without trying to figure out what was wrong? Is there something wrong with him?

Or is just our beautiful, brilliant, funny, tough AND overly sensitive?

I am beginning to think maybe not.

I DO NOT want a label on my child. I do NOT want to pump him with drugs. I want to know if we are missing something, and maybe we DO need to be more sensitive towards his fears…I felt as if that was one of the first check marks on his list of moments that molded him forever, and will never forget it…

I feel like I failed our son.

But now as I write this I feel some relief knowing that someone might say, “he is fine” or “call the doctor”. NOW.

We have a Tot time Halloween party this morning.

My stomach aches to think of what may or may not happen. Last year, we had to leave before it even started.

Do I hide under his rock with him until Halloween decorations come down, and Thanksgiving one’s go up?

I am at a loss. My girls were fearful of all things scary when they were younger, but nothing like this…no way near this.

Trick Or Treating? I really don’t think so.

My kids told him he can use his Captain America shield to hide from the bad stuff so we can still go out…I am just not sure that will happen…but maybe we try? Or will that scar him even more?

He is our baby. I just don’t want  to do any more harm than good…

I want to be his shield of all things good and evil.

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My sweet baby boy.

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Anxiety.

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Anxiety.

Anxiety.

It overwhelms me. Last night was the worst in a long time. I lost three hours of sleep because of it.

Alone with my thoughts and not sure what to do with myself…

My husband took our kids to his Mother’s for a visit..an overnight.

It was a gift to me…something I am always wishing for, or complaining that I never have time to myself, to do what I want, whenever I want…

Well, my wish came true. I had almost two whole days alone to do whatever I wanted.

I admit, I sat here, in front of the t.v. thinking that was what I really wanted, even though I had requested this time alone to “get stuff done” around the house.

I sat in front the t.v. wasting an hour of my time thinking that was one thing I never get to do…watch whatever I want. I zoned out like a moron, not finding anything remotely enjoyable to satisfy the need for something other than cartoons and cooking shows.

So I got motivated…I cleaned out closets and did laundry, and dusted…I was very productive for hours...then went to dinner with some family and really enjoyed myself…I didn’t have to take anyone to the bathroom at the restaurant or cut someone else’s food or be interrupted in my conversations. It was enjoyable.

Until I fell sound asleep, thanks to a few cocktails and a full belly and lots of cleaning all afternoon…I knew I would sleep well.

Or so I had hoped.

I woke at three a.m., heart racing feeling dizzy and confused. Why was I sleeping on the sofa? Where was everyone? I realized I was alone.

Just me.

I thought of every happy thought I could bring to mind…put on a bad sitcom…checked in on my blog to see my stats rising after having it re-blogged for the first time…

Nothing would shake it.

Anxiety…panic…whatever you want to call it…it wasn’t leaving.

It makes me jittery now just remembering how freaked out and bad my anxiety got.

I am terrified to be alone.

I used to live alone for a few years, and I loved it. That was pre-marriage and pre-kids…but still…I did it before, so why can’t I do it now? Why cant I enjoy it like I did then? Because someday in the future, all the kids will be gone-off to explore themselves create their own lives.

and I will have my husband, but there will be times when I will be alone again…and that causes me even more anxiety to think I may hate it or fear it.

This is who I am now, I guess…so deal with it…buck up woman!

But I don’t want anxiety…I want to feel peaceful and calm and enjoy life…

Maybe I need to do it more often so it isn’t such a scary thing…but for now…

I survived the night…I am very tired and rattled today, but thankful that my family returns today and will have a full house again…

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Until we meet again, Anxiety.

About Blank.

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blank

I am not exactly sure what this means in the computer world, but I know it is very similar to how I am feeling this week.

Blank.

Not sure why I am feeling this way, possibly because there is SO much going on right now, that I have shut down.

I tried to shut it down yesterday. Needed a RESTART button. I felt like I had to force myself to be happy when I woke up yesterday.

I did try.

And then I crumbled. I cried.

And cried some more. I don’t think I have cried that much in a while.

Then I just felt numb…

Blank. Void. Empty.

I thought maybe I should try to blog it out…get it all out in verbal diarrhea. But in the blankness, I felt like I have been failing at blogging as well…so why bother.

Woe is me…

I wanted to kick myself in the shins and tell myself to buck up. But I couldn’t. I needed to get it out. I haven’t felt that out of control of my feelings in a while…I would try to go about my day, so I didn’t keep upsetting the little ones…and the big kids too. They were great and supportive but it brought them down too. It wasn’t fair.

But I had to. 

There truly is so much going on right now, that I think I had been holding it all back for so long, that it erupted like a volcano. Oozing tears and sobs all day long.

I am okay now.

I needed those tears to wash away all of the stress and denial that I had been avoiding…the reality.

Life has been changing in this house at warp speed…high school graduations, college plans for two teens, countless summer jobs and schedules, sickness, cancer, family struggles, a growing business…it might seem petty compared to other problems that people are facing, but it hit me hard…all of us. But I guess, me being the most emotional in the house, I sucked it all up for the team.

I cried a little a graduation on Monday night, but it really and truly didn’t hit me until yesterday.

How different our lives will be in a few short weeks…forever.

The biggest blow has been with my in-laws…I came to realize how much I took them for granted…babysitting our kids at the drop of a hat…showing up for any and all things family-related…stepping in with preparations for parties days before and making food and treats for all occasions…and just simply always loving us unconditionally.

I have always known they love us and support us unconditionally, but not as much as until yesterday…maybe it is because I felt like I needed them right now…but they cannot be here. They just can’t. I wouldn’t dare ask them.

They have more important challenges right now, and a long road ahead…

My whining about all this despair and misery pales in comparison to what they are dealing with right now…shame on me.

But I had to.

I will not allow myself to feel guilty about this anymore…I had to find clarity and wash away all the confusion and muck in my brain.

I did it.

I woke up today feeling better…not great, but manageable. I am putting my best foot forward. I recharged my batteries on the beach today with my little ones, with the glorious sun blazing and a light ocean breeze keeping us cool…

I am not blank anymore…

I am blessed.

Fear.

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Fear.

We all have a little of it. Or if you are anything like me, a lot.

I am afraid of everything.  Spiders, flying, heights, death…

Nothing too out of the ordinary in the fear department,  but enough to leave my nerves raw at times.

I get it...when I am outside, that is a spider’s home so they will forever exist…as long as they are outside. I didn’t invite them for a visit or even to dinner…so amscray!

Flying I have been told is safer than driving…not sure I buy that one in this day and age of missing aircrafts and terrorism, but from a safety standpoint,  fine. And associating turbulence with a bumpy road in a car helps calm my nerves…sometimes.

The heights thing…well this one is just plain annoying/gut-wrenching/knee-shaking fear. I’m embarrassed to admit the second floor in the mall terrifies me. My kids are gently warned to stay away from the railing(probably more because if they had a problem over there, I would not be able to help) and just leave Mama be…nonchalantly hugging the windows and walls as we slowly make our way to a destination.

Death.  Well, the other fears just look ridiculous when comparing them to this one.

Death freaks me out more now as a mother and wife than ever before.

I fear getting sick and leaving my children too soon. I fear my husband getting sick and leaving me jobless and with a house full of kids and broken hearts.

I fear accidents that could alter our world in any given moment to any of our loved ones or even myself.

I fear loss...loss of a loved one so dear.

I have lost many loved ones…and it never gets easier. Never.

But losing someone or thinking it could be me or my husband, is just simply unbearable.

My fears, I am learning (even as I write this), are based on lack of control…I don’t know how to fly a plane, or keep bugs away, or stop my head from spinning when I get up too high.

I can conquer them in one way…

Never fly again. Squash every spider that enters my house. Never go to the second floor in the mall again.

I could maybe even conquer my fear of death…do not allow myself to love or get close to anyone, for fear of losing them. To give up on my health and do whatever I want, eat whatever I want and just stop worrying about it all…

Become numb to everything around me.

It is possible…

I may not be a scaredy cat anymore by becoming numb, but I will be all alone…

With lots of memories…

Like the countless times of running scared when seeing a spider in my house and my kids running in circles around me, laughing as I climb up on a sofa to get away from that tiny little bugger…

Or of when I would have to stop and grab onto a wall like Spiderman in the mall as panic sets in (looking like a complete weirdo), glaring at my husband and kids who were trying to be supportive and steer clear of me, but not hiding their giggles as they watch my discreet web-slinging action along the windows of countless storefronts.

Or maybe even forget about all the amazing trips we took together as a family, exploring the world together, or even flying yet again last week (after years of mentally blocking out the possibility of ever flying again) and meeting the most inspiring woman I could ever imagine sitting next to on a plane…

Trying to forget all these strange yet beautiful memories shared with my loved ones…

I could do all of that and let fear control me…and it might actually work…

Or even worse…

Waste more precious time being afraid…

Instead of realizing I should have just lived.

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Something About Mary.

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Mary is my middle name. Mary is my Mother’s name. I pray to Mary everyday…even more so when I am worried or afraid. I am not a Holy Roller, but find comfort in praying.

I prayed hard to Mary, and God, and my favorite Angels in Heaven (and pretty much anyone that would listen to me) on Tuesday that we would make it home safely to our children.

Then she appeared.

Mary.

I didn’t know her name. She came up behind us in the security line and made a joke about hoping to not have to run through the airport to catch her plane because the lines were so long.

That was it. We all made it through…then waited. Our flight was delayed. More waiting and more worrying for the big chicken.

Finally the time came to board…here comes my praying again.

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 (Reminding myself to bring the Blessed Mother like this one on my next flight)

My throat gets tight, I get shaky, my head spins…trust me, flying anywhere with me, is no fun. But I so desperately want to see the world.

So I muscle through.

I thought to myself I can do this…knowing how so many people wish they could be traveling…I can do this.

Then it happened… there she was.

The woman behind us in line in security was boarding our plane. We find that to be cool in a strange sort of way, when you see people from your flight or in an airport, at random times in a trip.

And wait…she couldn’t be…she is taking the empty window seat next to me in our row…woah.

That’s weird.

We exchanged pleasantries, my husband, as usual, fell sound asleep in seconds, and I am left alone with my thoughts and prayers and warnings of a bumpy flight…all to myself.

A little while into the flight, I checked my air vent…the nice woman next to me was covering up her chest and said I could use her air vent as well, it was bothering her…she explained she had a port, and it hurt for some reason…

This small comment turned into a funny, emotional, and strange conversation that lasted until we landed…

As we packed up our things,(I was relieved to be home yet thoroughly freaked out), she introduced herself…Mary.

Wow.

I know it is a fairly common name, but as she talked of family, and her illness she was recovering from, and trips she has taken, there was one similarity after another…I had started to think to myself…is she my guardian angel to get me through this flight or something more?

Near the end of our conversation, she was giving me strength to get through some challenges we are facing in our family, and comforting words…then she told me that someone in her church had told her she was like a Prophet of sorts…she was determined to take this trip to go help guide someone who was suffering and needed support…then she looked at me, and said “ya know, I think this kind of happened for a reason too”…I gently touched her arm and said “I think so too”…I then told her why…how each story she told me, was so similar to our life and things that were going on right now, that I felt she could be in it with us…I cannot get into detail of all the little things and big things right now…

But I can say, I am a believer…in Mary.

She may have been just a cancer survivor sitting next to me on the plane with a terrific sense of humor…or she could have been a prophet somehow…or all my praying sent her to sit with me to distract me from all of my fears…

Whatever it was, it worked…I will never forget that flight.

Or Mary.

Anxiety.

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Anxiety.

Do I already have a blog titled this?

I feel like I may…

Or maybe it is because it is a running theme in my life.  Regardless, I am riddled with it this morning.

Anxiety.

I am packing up for five days to go on trip with my husband…alone…without our five kids.

Venting quickly through my blog before my mad dash to get the kiddies off to school, finish my lists, charts, and graphs laid out for my mother and sister and the kids.

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Crossing off every little thing on my lists, and maybe do it again.

Then I stop and wonder how jet-setters like celebrities fly…

Constantly?!

Leaving their families and children behind to bop around the globe daily, like I do around town to the grocery store and dropping kids off at practice or games in my suburban…

I am in awe…I would need large doses of my chill pills on a daily basis to make it anywhere out of state.

I love to travel.

Yet hate flying.

I had no fear as a teenager about traveling. I flew to Austria ALONE when I was seventeen…not even a travel buddy or group tour…I did it. No anxiety. No fear. No nothing.

But for some reason, that thought of that girl I was back then now gives me anxiety as well.

I am a wreck…flying south for five days for some much needed rest and relaxation (and apparently in need of some mental diffusing) but also have a work event to distract me…I do need to go…

I probably have a large ulcer with all this anxiety.

I am a worry wart. I hate this about me, because I truly do know how to have fun.

I will let it go when I get home safely next week and kiss my babies and everyone is happy, healthy and safe…

Don’t know if my husband would appreciate my last comment…I need to let it go…now for him…for us…for me.

We have so much going on right now on the home front, I feel guilt leaving, and anxious to get back…

But all parties agree (I may be seeing their point as I write this), that we need this getaway…badly.  Life has been full lately…lots of good stuff, and then some pretty bad stuff as well…

But there is nothing I can do to make all of it go away.

Except maybe cry…get it out…finish packing…and let it go…

This is dedicated to the army of family we have recruited to help us take this trip…and to those who would help if they could…