6

In my shoes, walking sleep

I’ve been wanting to write a new blog for a while but lacked any inspiration or motivation to get going on it. Also things were humming along quite well so I was doing things and generally making hay while the sun shined. A number of things have occurred recently that have given me the impetus and material to get something down on virtual paper.

I’m currently in another relapse of my anxiety symptoms, whilst this is highly inconvenient and frustrating I’m still functioning, at a slightly reduced level but functioning nonetheless. This brings with it a reemergence of fear, terror on occasion, trembling, crying at points and the old favourite – racing obsessive thoughts. I come at this all now from a point of view of knowledge and familiarity, I know what this all is and that at least makes it more manageable. It doesn’t mean I’m enjoying myself, it still stinks but its not overwhelming.

As always there has been a trigger for this and this is my main reason for writing today because triggers are a funny thing, they are not always necessarily ‘bad’ things and the effect seems to arrive days after the actual triggering event when you’ve forgotten all about it and are wondering why you feel funny now.

The past month or so has been great, I had lots of ‘good brain’ days, feeling upbeat, positive and my energy is getting even better. Hooray! Then my appointment to see the neuropsychiatrist came through, this was made to help me get a handle on my moods and anxiety but I seem to cope with this myself now better than I used to. I went anyway with the aim of talking about a funny sensation I’ve been having for well over a year now that other health services have kind of ignored and something which I myself wrote off as fatigue. I call them my ‘slumps’ they happen throughout the day and have varying symptoms similar to anxiety but they are quite overwhelming and make me tired. They vary in intensity and sometimes don’t occur at all. When I first started noticing them they used to last for hours and cause distress, my face would feel hot, my eyes would feel heavy and I’d end up crying from a rush of emotion they caused.  Now they are less intense and a lot more manageable (this is good news).

So I mentioned these to the neuropsych and said I have tried everything to figure them out (blood tests for EVERYTHING, napping, powering through, vitamins, howling at the moon etc) but there seems to be no explanation yet and I’m quite frankly getting a bit sick of them because they eat into my day. I suggested as a last gasp that I’m concerned they may be an issue with my Temporal Lobe caused by the brain injury. He said it’s a possibility but the fact they are improving is a good sign (I dont tend to get them on days where I’m relaxed and happy so this also could point to them being mood/psychology related, a last remaining crumb of trauma in the body perhaps?). But he said there’s no harm in getting it checked for my peace of mind and just to see. So you find braingirl waiting for an appointment for an EEG and a CT scan to look inside my noggin and check for gremlins.

EEG

If there’s something there its easily solvable with epilepsy meds (which I’m already on) but that doesn’t stop the old voice of doom chattering away telling me all is lost. He also warned me that there could be no reason and that it’s unexplained so I may just have to accept them for now for what they are. I’m prepared for all this as at least it crosses something off the list and I know my brain is ok. Hospital appointments, brain scans, health anxiety. BING BONG TRIGGER NUMBER 1.

I left his office feeling good that something was finally being done, feeling quite optimistic off this I decided to go and do one of my tasks which was to enrol at college, yes, you heard it, I’m going back to school in September. I’m doing a Counselling course, I was nervous about being in the building and even though this is an extremely positive step it is PETRIFYING. People, noise, focus, expectation, studying eek! BING BONG TRIGGER NUMBER 2.

I also signed on the dotted line for volunteering at a local open farm, I love the outdoors and animals so this was perfect for me. Again, noise, people, expectation, being out of my bubble. BING BONG TRIGGER NUMBER 3.

Add to this the delights of a particularly horrendous episode of PMT and we have Hurricane Anxiety approaching from the East.

So yes, I’m feeling a bit rubbish right now in a bit of a daze, worrying, but I know why, I’ve pushed my limits in a positive way and it has impacted on me by my brain trying to make me retreat back to the trenches again. UNSAFE! UNSAFE! YOU NEED TO HIDE QUICK, THE WORLD IS SCARY BRAINGIRL, LOOK WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DO THINGS, I TOLD YOU TO FREEZE AND NEVER MOVE AGAIN!!!

I’ll bounce out eventually but for now I’m scared again and that’s ok, It’s ok to feel what I feel, I don’t punish myself for these things anymore.