When I was a teenager there was clearly something wrong with me. I would get furious, not angry- furious- for no good reason. I couldn't sleep well. My thoughts were racing. I had an eating disorder. In short I was nuts.
My parents tried to get me help, and like any teen I fought them tooth and nail. The doctors tried to tell my parents that I was bipolar. I am not. I don't lay around in bed unable to move-- just the opposite. My head and thoughts move so fast I can't move. It is like being pulled in a thousand and three directions at the same time and you can't even begin to figure out what your thinking because your brain has already moved on to 10 new things.
While your at it totally innocuous thoughts become worst case scenarios in seconds. If I were a super hero I would be Worst Case Scenario Girl: able to jump from nothing to catastrophe in seconds.
Finally, as an adult- I found a doctor and explained my thought process. He looked at me and said I had severe anxiety. He prescribed meds for that. The first time I took them, I was wary, but then they too effect and it was amazing. I wondered, "is this how normal people feel all the time?" My brain and thoughts stopped racing. I stopped having to work my self up to being able to handle the stress of grocery shopping. Picking a brand of OJ was no longer a 10 minute debate. I didn't snap at my husband. I didn't get so frustrated with everything. Life was so much more enjoyable.
The day before yesterday, I ran out of meds. I was only out for a day. But in that day- my behavior change was obvious. It was not good. Thankfully, I got my meds right away and by the next day I had managed to regulate a bit more.
I am not ashamed of my anxiety and panic disorder. I am not ashamed of my asthma or kidney issues or my blood issue. They are medical issues that can be treated and when treated I am fine.
This being mental health awareness week I feel the need to speak about how anxiety does not always look like a panic attack.. it can... but it can look a lot of other ways to.
I am not reliant exclusively on meds either. I exercise a lot- but for times like this, when I need to rest and recover- they are a freaking gift from science (and G-d)