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If you have anxiety and you know it, clap your hands: Tips for caring for anxiety

if you have anxiety & you know it, clap your hands
As you’ve read in previous posts, I have anxiety. I’ve written about it a few times in the past year. This post today is about what has helped my anxiety tremendously. I thought maybe, it could help others suffers as well. I’ve come to realize over the last 5 years, just how important self-care is when you have anxiety. I have never been the one who do things to make my self happy and just take care of myself. I goal was to always make other happy. That’s what I did, and let me tell you, it took a toll on my not taking care of my needs and happiness too. It worsened my anxiety by like 100. I wasn’t doing things that made me happy. I wasn’t eliminating the things that made me unhappy. I just wasn’t really taking care of my anxiety the way I needed too. Sometimes, self-care can be hard to do when your anxiety is bad, because most of the time, you just want to crawl in a hole. I get it.
DISCLOSURE: I am not a professional in any way. I am simply someone who has anxiety and knows what helps me and thought maybe this could help others with their anxiety.

Hobbies:

I have found that having a hobby or two, or three can help manage anxiety. It keeps your mind and yours busy. Over the course of dealing with anxiety, I’ve picked up a few hobbies that have really helped me. Sewing is one of them I learned how to sew in high school but stopped sewing after I graduated and then started up again about three 4 years after I graduated. I watched YouTube videos, read articles and found so many patters for me to sew. I invested so much time sewing that one year for Christmas, I made everyone’s gifts. I made quilts, reversible purses, infinity scarves, hats, pajama pants, makeup bags and all kinds of other stuff including baby clothes. If y’all want to start a new hobby and you think sewing would be a good one, check out this pattern for a simple makeup bag. Super easy, if you have basic sewing machine skills that is.
Another hobby I have is Photography. I love cameras and taking pictures. I started taking pictures back when I was in high school. I did it for fun for a while and then started doing family photos for people all over Facebook. After years of doing that, I decided that it gave me too much anxiety to do it for actual people that want professional photos done, so I stopped doing it for everyone but family and friends. I mainly like to do it for fun and more so of landscapes, and nature.
My third and most favorite hobby of course, is blogging. I started blogging before I met my husband in 2013 but didn’t really get into it until October of 2015, which was the year and month I got married and I was also six months pregnant, so I felt I had a lot to blog about. Blogging has helped me more than anything with my anxiety. Well I feel my anxiety about to hit hard, I started writing things down; feelings, thoughts, solutions, anything I could think of and then it would give me an idea for a blog post. I figured out how to sometimes channel my anxiety into something creative. Doesn’t always work, but for the most part it does.

Self-care:

This one took me so long to do. I am nit the one who does anything for themselves. I am always doing for others and it started taking a toll on me. Here are a few things I have done for myself that make me just feel good. I signed up with ipsy for the $10 monthly makeup bag. I did that for over a year, and it was nice to have something specifically come for me every month that I was interested in.

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Another thing I now like to do for myself that I haven’t done in over 10 years, is get manicures and pedicures. I used to get manicures done all the time, but never pedicures. I never use to like anyone touching my feet. I’m not going to lie, it feels great and I plan to keep doing it for myself. Not saying that you should go and pay to get your nails done, but you should make time to do them yourself or ask a friend to do them for you, if that’s what you’re into of course.

Just do things that make your body and mind feel good. Go to the gym, get your nails done, do a facial mask, sit in the bathtub and relax. Just do something FOR YOU.

Anxiety help:

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One of the things I have found to calm my anxiety is Aromatherapy. Aromatherapy is the practice of inhaling the scent of essential oils to improve your well-being. One theory of how they work is that by stimulating the smell receptors in your nose, they can send messages to your nervous system. They are also thought to have a subtle effect on the body’s chemical and energy systems. Because of this, aromatherapy is often used as a natural remedy to relieve anxiety and stress. Some don’t believe in this and that’s okay. It’s whatever works for you.
My anxiety is the worst at night when I am trying to go to sleep. Something I have found to help is an app called Sleep Sounds. It’s calming sounds like rainfall, nature sounds and fire crackling. I’ve been using it for the past couple of days, so far, it’s really helped me ease my racing mind to where I am able to fall asleep.
Another thing I suggest if your anxiety is bad and you just can’t seem to ever get out of it, is to make a doctor’s appointment for it. I did and it has helped so much. I know this option isn’t for everyone, but if you can’t find a solution to controlling your anxiety, I highly suggest getting professional help. Nothing to be ashamed of. Sometimes you just have so much in your brain, that you need the help sorting everything out.

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The best thing I can say to do that will alleviate some of the stress and anxiety in your life is, to cut ties with people who only cause you issues. Friends, and family. If they judge you, cause issues in your personal life, make rude comments towards you and/or your kids, or just make your life all around, hard, CUT THEM OUT. I can’t tell you guys how many people I’ve cut out of my life for starting drama with me and my family. It’s just not needed in my life and it’s certainly not needed in yours.

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My anxiety isn’t an excuse for YOUR actions

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One of the most reoccurring problems I run into with my anxiety is others using my anxiety as an excuse for their actions. Here’s an example:

 “Oh, you can be in a bad mood because of your anxiety, but when I do it, all hell breaks loose.”

First of all, I don’t use my anxiety as an excuse for how I treat someone. It may be the cause, but it still doesn’t give me the right to justify it because I have anxiety. I realize what I did or said, and I am always quick to apologize. Never do I use it as an excuse to be a bitch to someone and for them to just pretend it didn’t happen. I’m an adult and can recognize when I say or do something wrong and I address it the right way.

Another thing that is on the top of my Anxiety sucks list is when it’s thrown in my face constantly for someone else’s actions. It’s hard enough to feel the way I do with my anxiety and how it can just tear me down and into a million little pieces as it is. If I had a choice, I wouldn’t choose to have anxiety, especially if I’m not going to use it for my benefit. It goes deeper than that. 90% of the time, I feel like I am the only one in the universe who feels like they are crazy, even though I know there are people that feel the same. That’s what anxiety does, it isolates you and breaks you down until you have no idea what emotion is what.

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I’ve had my anxiety belittled by a lot of people. Sadly, mostly family members. I had someone say to me, “You know what anxiety is, right? It’s just fear.” Yeah, it is fear, but not just fear in the simplest form. It’s fear of actual things, and other feelings. Fear of being alone, fear of being powerless, fear of not being good enough. All of these can lead into other things. Like, fear of not being a good parent, fear of not having control of your own life, fear that something is going to go wrong. I know that everyone feels these during their life, but what most people don’t realize or even understand is that people who suffer from anxiety feel these things daily. DAILY PEOPLE. Could you imagine living your life feeling so much fear every day?
This fear can make itself present at any moment, and trust me, it does. It makes itself present with me when I’m happy, when I’m having the best day ever. I can’t always control it. Trust me, if I could, I totally would, because who wants to feel like this?
I’ve also had others tell me “It’s all in your head, you know that right?” DUH. That’s the worst part. It is all in my head. I battle with myself and what goes on up there DAILY. Of course, they didn’t mean it in an understanding way…They meant it like I am making it up. I wish people, I wish.

 

Sometimes I wish I never talked about my anxiety with others, so they can’t throw it in my face, but then if no one knew what I battle with every day, everyone would just think I’m just a crazy, angry person, so either way, it sucks.

 

A bit of advice to everyone suffering from anxiety or not, don’t throw someone’s anxiety in their face to justify your actions. Be an adult and own up to your own shit, not make excuses for it, and for those who have anxiety, don’t use it as an excuse to treat someone like shit. Apologize for what you say an do even if anxiety caused it.

 

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Being Thankful.

Samuel Is Turning 1!

I haven’t really expressed what I am thankful for this thanksgiving season. I started to do the Thankful challenge on Instagram, but it literally only lasted like a day and then I got lazy. But I feel it is important that I do express what I am thankful for. One of the reasons why I feel it is important for me is because, this past year has been hard for me. Like extremely hard. I struggled a lot with anxiety and depression as well as constantly being sick, but just because I struggled, doesn’t mean that i don’t have things to be thankful for. A lot of things to be thankful for actually. Here goes.

ONE:

My husband has helped me a lot with my anxiety and depression. Sometimes, he’s the one who causes my anxiety, but I think that’s most significant others that do that. He has really taken the time to understand what anxiety is and how to handle it with me. He has sat on the bathroom floor with me at 2 am while I had a panic attacks multiple times. He always reassures me that everything will be okay. I am thankful to have someone who understands my anxiety and helps me through it.

TWO:

My kids drive me crazy probably more than any other human beings, but they have also taught me more than any other human beings. I learned a lot patience because of my kids. When you have a toddler, big kid and a teenager, you need patience. Another thing I learned is what genuine love is. Like real unconditional love. I am beyond thankful that I got to experience that kind of love.

THREE:

Having all the problems I’ve had this year, I’ve seen a lot of doctors. So I am thankful for doctors and all the help I have gotten from them.

FOUR:

My family could probably be considered dysfunctional and crazy, but if it weren’t for my family (Parents) I wouldn’t be here. If it weren’t for my family, I wouldn’t be the strong, independent person I am today. I am thankful that I even have a family. I am also thankful for bonus family. Family isn’t just blood or by marriage. Family is people who love you and are there for you. My bonus family has been there for me more than some of my blood family.

FIVE:

As much as I claim to not have friends or want them, I know I have people who would always be there when I need them. I know I have those who would drop what they are doing to come drink wine with me and blog. I know I have those I could call to talk to about anxiety and not feel like a bother. I have those who try to make my day better by inviting me over so I am not alone. I do have those people and I am thankful for them.

SIX:

Just recently, I got a new job that I don’t even have to leave my house for. I am so thankful for that. What I am most thankful for about my new job is that I don’t have to share a toilet with other nasty human beings. I am thankful that I even have a job.

SEVEN:

I am thankful for the internet. I know it’s not a necessity, but blogging has helped me tremendously with my anxiety and depression. It has helped me manage it in a positive way and I have also made a lot of blogging friends in the years I have been blogging.

Here are some other things I am thankful for that are totally not necessities.

 

  1. Peanut butter
  2. Leggings
  3. Electric toothbrushes
  4. Waffles
  5. Peanut butter cheerios
  6. My soft purple blanket
  7. My oil diffuser and oils
  8. My CBD relief cream
  9. Candles
  10. Vacuum cleaners
  11. Radios
  12. Notebooks
  13. Flavored water
  14. Cameras
  15. My laptop
  16. Sewing machine
  17. Cold coffee
  18. Fans
  19. Netflix & Hulu
  20. BBQ food
  21. Planners
  22. Pinterest

 

I am thankful for this cutness!

What are you thankful for? I’d love to hear!!

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Did you know that this is emotional abuse?

 

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This is something I’ve dealt with most my life. My feelings have always been invalidated by most of the ones that said they loved me. 

Invalidation is when you tell someone or insinuate that someone’s feelings are not valid or that they are wrong.  

This is not love… It’s manipulation and emotional abuse. Here are some examples of invalidating remarks.

  • “You should feel lucky…”
  • “Don’t be so sensitive…”
  • “You need to lighten up.”
  • “You’re the only one who gets upset over something like this.”
  • “Get over it, that’s life.”
  • “You’re overreacting.” (I seem to get this one a lot.)

How many of you have heard any of these from your loved ones? Yeah, all of these are invalidating statements and it’s emotional abuse. It’s not okay and it causes harm to others. It makes someone feel like their feelings are wrong or bad. It can worsen psychological disorders and emotional problems. This can cause so many other life issues…

invalidationFeelings and emotions aren’t right or wrong, they are natural. When painful feelings and emotions are suppressed, dismissed, or invalidated, they become more intense or manifest in other ways. Pain when put on the back burner can never heal.

Still to this day, my emotions and feelings are invalidated. Having anxiety and being dismissed had made me feel so insignificant. It’s made me feel like I’m just crazy. I’ve felt more alone in my life than I’ve felt wanted or even loved. Before I had my daughter, I didn’t want to be around anymore. I didn’t want to feel any emotion anymore. I was so mentally and emotionally exhausted from feeling so insignificant, that I felt like there was no point to life anymore.

My daughter has shown me a different view on life. Although I still struggle… a lot, my daughter reminds me of my worth and reminds me that I do matter and that I have a purpose. .

Invalidating someone’s feelings or emotions is abuse and can cause more harm to them than you’ll ever know… You don’t want that on your hands.

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Motherhood and depression, my struggle.

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My regular followers may have noticed that I don’t post as nearly as often as I use to… There’s a reason for that. This reason isn’t an easy thing to talk about let alone blog about for everyone to read, but I have decided that I should in fact blog about it because I want my blog to be an honest one. You know, un-sugar coated like how life really is.

My depression has been such a struggle for me lately. I’ve struggled with depression since my early teen years and it’s gotten worse over the years, but I’ve managed to handle it and keep it under control… until recently… My depression has been so significant that most the time I feel like I lose who I am.

Here’s what I struggle with.

Loss of appetite: This is the number one sign that everyone recognizes when they know something is wrong with me. Everyone that truly knows me, knows my love of food. I hardly eat one full meal a day anymore, and the things I really love to eat, I don’t have a taste for anymore.

No motivation: Literally, I have little to no motivation to even shower, let alone be the mom I know I have to be. I’ve been putting everything off, which is not something I normally do. I am normally an organized, on time type of person.

Exhaustion: Every form that exhaustion comes in, I have it. Physically, mentally and emotionally. No matter what I do, I feel like this. Even if I slept a decent amount, I still feel like this. This affects every aspect of my life.

Always wanting to sleep: I know I can’t sleep as much as I want because I’m a mom, but the WANT for sleep is heavy. I feel as though sleeping is a temporary escape from constant sadness that I carry.

But not being able to sleep: It doesn’t matter how exhausted I am, how drained in every way possible that I am or how much I just wan to sleep, come night time, I can’t. This probably has to do with my anxiety.My brain’s shut off switch is non existent at night, I guess.

Loss of contact with everyone: This is probably  the worst one for me, honestly. I know I have people who understand what I’m struggling with and who are 100% there for me, but it just seems better and easier to not burden anyone, so I just push everyone away. Once I do this, I feel alone and it’s the worst feeling ever when struggling with depression.

Loss of interest in things I love: I stopped doing the two things that I absolutely loved doing. I use to feel a sense of accomplishment when I would take photography or sew. I haven’t sewn in about 8 months and haven’t done photography in about 6 months. This goes along with the whole no motivation thing.

Effortless things seem difficult: Just getting out of bed is hard. Picking out something to wear is hard. Simple things that are easy, feel hard to me.

Depression is being color blind and constantly told how colorful the world is.

These are just some of the things that I struggle with on a daily basis. Being a mom with depression like this is hard and really devastating. I don’t have motivation most the time to even chase my toddler around. I use sit in Averie’s room, in her little chair and play with her and I’ve found myself doing that less and less. The worst part is that my sweet 2 year old recognizes that something’s wrong with me and tries to make it better.

My depression affects everyone around me, not just me. It’s devastating to see my loved ones affected by something I am struggling with.

If any of you are feeling this way on a daily basis and you feel like it’s getting worse, please, seek professional help. This is something I’ll be doing this week.

 

This was a very hard post for me to write. It took days to write and then days more to actually post.

jessie

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Dear Present Broken Self…





Dear Present Broken Self,
I know You’ve been through hell and back and then hell and back again. I know you’ve been feeling broken lately and have had a hard time trusting anyone, so I am here to tell you that you will be alright. You are strong, remember that. You are worth it. Don’t let the cruel actions of others make you question your self-worth. You do not control what others do, so don’t blame yourself for their actions. Don’t think you did something wrong because others decided to hurt you and betray your trust for their own selfish  reasons, they choose to do that, not you. Only take what you can handle. Only fix what you think has a chance. Don’t let anyone influence your choices. Those are your decisions. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad for a choice you made that you felt was right for you. Don’t let anyone or their actions define who you are or who you strive to be, unless it’s beneficial to you. Don’t let anyone take advantage of you again. You have control over that, you always have.


Sincerely,
Your stronger self