This isn't a very uplifting blog post. I'll just go ahead and throw that out there at the beginning. I've been wanting to post about some of the minutiae of our life, but everything seems kind of tainted with this gray cloud of worry. Finally, I've decided, whatever I'm just going to blog about it.
Most of you probably know that I have struggled with depression and anxiety for years. Looking back on my childhood, I can see that I was a very anxious kid from the beginning. The depression didn't come along until high school, but when it did, it superseded the anxiety in mind consuming-ness. I've never been shy or uncomfortable talking about it because I honestly don't see a reason to be. It's a part of who I am, but it doesn't define me and I get aggravated when others put pressure on me to hide it away like it's shameful. It's brain chemistry!
When Cordie came along, she rocked our world and my normal routines. As a result, I wasn't taking my medicine regularly. I didn't start to notice until I got dizzy, which is a side effect of coming off of it. So I talked to my doctor and we decided that I was in a place to stop the medication. I was all for it and I did. I stopped at the end of January because I figured if I could make it through February, the worst month of my depression, and with a baby who wouldn't sleep, then I was golden. Sure enough, things were fine. The rest of the winter, all spring, and all summer were fine. Oh I might have an isolated incident of anxiety, but nothing major and nothing that would even be considered outside normal.
In the last two weeks though, I can feel the anxiety level slowly creeping up. Part of it is just that there is a lot going on. Most of it's good, but it's still stuff that isn't our day-to-day life, like her birthday party, going to the beach, and our upcoming birthparent visit. Guys, I hate it. I hate that feeling of tightness in my chest and the pressure in my throat that makes feel like I can't breathe. I hate that after months of smooth sailing that I'm second guessing my thought out decision to stop the medication. Heck, I hate the second guessing of everything in my life! Am I a good mother? Am I a good wife? Am I a good Christian? Am I heading back down this anxiety riddled path that I don't want to be on? There is the glimmer of logical thought that says things like "This is the anxiety talking. No one is accusing you of being bad at any of those things." But it's hard to drown out your own hyperventilating internal monologue.
In a few weeks or months, when I don't feel this anxious, some of this will be funny. Like me being gratingly peppy to Cordie about going to Kindermusik to make new friends, while I wipe my sweating palms discretely on her car seat cover and force a smile that resembles the Joker's crazed grin. I KNOW it is stupid ridiculous to be anxious over Kindermusik, but I am! Some of the anxiety has a basis in reality, like the birthparent visit. I want it to go smoothly and I am concerned that Cordie won't go to her birthparents because of her separation anxiety. I would hate to hurt their feelings. But at the same time, I worry that she will instinctively recognize them as her "real" parents and take her first steps running toward their outstretched arms, thus confirming that I can't provide her with all the love and affection that she needs. Darned if you do, darned if you don't.
Summing up, anxiety sucks. If you have anxiety, I am silently saluting you Hunger Games style. The arena is tough and the casualties are many. Fight the good fight out there. If you don't, be so thankful that this isn't your battle, but I'm sure you are fighting something equally bad. We all are. Support us, even if it has to be from a distance, we don't want to feel alone.