It has taken me the entirety of my 30 years of life to accept the fact that I suffer from an anxiety disorder. I have always known I had one, however, accepting it is different from knowing. When I only knew that I had a disorder, I was angry, frustrated, depressed and extremely bitter. I hated every heart palpitation. Every second given to a tight chest, and most of all despised panic attacks. My prayers were full of rage and endless one sided negotiations. I wanted anything but anxiety.
However, as I have accepted my disorder, I see it in a different light. Not something that pulls my life backwards, but something that flings me forward. By being open about my anxiety, I have been able to help those around me. I have shown them that they can live a life of peace in spite of their anxiety. They can be happy and joyful. The disorder doesn’t have to control them. I can show them that there is hope.
It has been a very, very long road, but it has been worth it. I am much stronger because of it.
While, overall, I have been having a mostly anxiety free week, I have been experiencing low levels of anxious undercurrent about starting up this new school year.
The first three days of school are for us teachers to be trained on various changes and procedures and then the kids come Thursday.
My anxiety has been circling around the trainings. I couldn’t figure out why until tonight. My first year teaching I ended up having a slight panic attack during the staff meeting. I clearly remember having all 30 some staff members sitting in a circle with our principal talking about procedures. I vividly remember getting very hot and then my stomach feeling like it was going to dispel my breakfast. I spent nearly 20 minutes in the bathroom trying to calm down.
This experience was 4 years ago, and nothing like that has happened again, but obviously the feeling of apprehension still lingers. However, this time around I will have my husband on the administration staff so I will be able to have his presence as a comfort in case I were to experience an attack.
I am going to stay positive and remember the great things that are going on this year! Anxiety is not invited!
Over the last few days I have been experiencing an ADHD high. By this I mean that my ADHD has been kicked into high gear and I have been unable to stay on topic for more than 10 seconds. I talked at about 200 words per minute and slept only a few hours. A lot of this energy was devoted to getting my classroom and lesson plans prepared for the start are school, which is next week.
As I have studied ADHD through my Masters degree, myself and my students, I have noticed that we ADHD suffers tend to experience periods of highs and crashes. Being on a high can be very annoying at night time (or in a professional meeting). However, it is also wonderful because during this time, if we are taught the skills, we are able to harness our creativity and put it to good use. I was able to cross off a lot of the items on my to-do list and my classroom looks great! I am feeling wonderful about this upcoming school year.
Considering I have only had 3 hours of sleep in the last 48 hours, I knew I had to try and help the high disappear. I have had a two week high and let me tell you, the crash that follows is horrible! Now, I help my mind calm down, I found a very slow and purposeful yoga practice to follow. I turned on a very dim light and shut out all other noises. I focused on allowing my mind and body relax and prepare for sleep. I feel so relaxed and for the first time in quite a while my mind is quiet!
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just drive to the dump and drop off our emotions? Bury them under mounds of dirt and compact them deep down into the ground with giant trucks? Unfortunately we cannot throw our emotions into a giant put, but we can face them. We can tackle them head on and admit the truth of our struggles. It may seem scary, but in truth, if we buried our problems they only get worse. Once we expose our pain, we can begin the healing process.
I was reminded of this when my husband and I went to the Landfill today and I was thinking how nice it would be to leave my anxiety with all the junk we left behind.
Have a fantastic day and remember you are stronger than your pain!
Most of the time here at the Persistent Platypus, I like to provide enouragement to those in need. However, this time I am in need of a little encouragement. I am very frustrated, and slightly anxious, about my job for next year. I am a special education teacher who works at a school with a high turn-over rate. The turn-over is mostly due to the fact that my school is literally in the middle of the desert and most people use it as a launch pad for their careers. Due to this turn-over rate, my position is always up in the air at the end of each year. Special Ed positions are always last to be scheduled because they have to wrap around the general education classes to be able to service the students in special education.
This is always a very stressful time of year for me because I am always in limbo. It is hard for me not to know, or not to plan for next year. I am fully aware that my anxiety doesn’t help the process get any easier.
What are some ways that you have found to be helpful for you when dealing with uncertainty?
Stress is always going to be apart of our life. Stress is a natural reaction our body undergoes to help encourage us to complete tasks and it, in some ways, acts as a natural motivator. Now, for those of us who suffer from anxiety disorders, small amounts of stress can send us into a tailspin in a quick hurry!
We have to learn how to effectively combat stress so that it won’t take a physical or emotional toll on our bodies. Think positively when you find yourself in stressful situations and remember that it will get better.
I am learning how to handle my stress while continuing to remain positive. I have to admit it is incredibly difficult and I have found myself leaning towards the side of self pity, and that is NOT where I want to be. I am going to continue push myself to push onward inspite of the stressful decisions and situations I face.
Have you ever felt complex drained of all emotion, and you are left feeling utterly exhausted? Well, that is where I am right now. The past 24 hours have been very challenging emotionally. I had some drama, which I hate, at work, and it all left me very upset and ridiculously anxious. I must say the only thing that got me through the day was the support and love of my friends. They are incredible and wonderful, and there is not enough praise in their world for me to give them.
I think it is virtually impossible to fight anxiety alone. I also think it is difficult to go through any struggle on your own. Friends and family are so important to help ease our struggles and help us in our darkest days. Today was difficult but my friends were there for me and I was able to get through it! They loved me just as I am!
What does ADHD feel like? Are we sufferers just lazy? Unmotivated? Absent-minded? These are questions I constantly encounter as a special education teacher as well as an ADHD-er. I have had ADHD as long as I can remember, therefore I know nothing different. My mind has always worked 1 billion miles and hour and I have always lost EVERYTHING I own. However, people who do not have ADHD often wonder why we can’t follow simple directions such as putting away laundry, cleaning our rooms, doing our homework, paying the bills. Well, let me give you a little glimpse into our mind.
The best analogy of ADHD that I have ever encountered explains it as have your internet browser open and having 50 tabs open at one time. The more tabs that are open, the smaller the tab. The size of the tab relates to the attention span we are able to give to each task. If you want someone with ADHD to make their bed, yet they have many other “tabs” open their memory may be slow or perhaps a “pop-up” will show up and take away their attention. Those of us with ADHD are not purposefully trying to avoid work (for the most part). We just have so many “tabs” open at one time that it is nearly impossible to function at a normal rate. We often have to click over to different tabs and check things and switch back, and so on and so on. While our minds are busy sorting through the tabs we are missing out on what is happening in the present. It’s not because we are ignoring you. We just are sorting through our tabs and trying to make sense of it all.
I have days where I feel as if I have 300 tabs open and others where I only have 10 or 15. There are highs and lows. I have noticed that when I am on a high, the longer it is the bigger the crash will be. It takes an incredible amount of energy to keep functioning at 100 miles per hour. Just last week I had a two and a half week high and over the weekend my crash finally hit, and it was huge! I felt as if I had just finished a marathon, which in a sense I had. My mind has been running at warp speed for so long that my body could no longer keep up.
Overall, I love having ADHD. It gives me endless creativity and energy to do all the wonderful things I want to do. However, it is frustrating when I forget things, miss out on the present, and can’t follow multi-step instructions. But I wouldn’t trade my mind for anyone else’s! 🙂
I hope that this analogy has allowed you to understand ADHD a little more. There is so much about it that is misunderstood because of the attention it has gotten in the media. So many people get diagnosed with it who don’t actually it, and that is frustrating to those of us who actually have the real disorder. We are more than just day dreamers and lazy people. We are just trying to sort out all our tabs!
It has been a long week and I am relieved, beyond words, that the weekend is finally upon us! It has been an extremely productive week, actually two weeks, and I think a lot of it has to do with my ADHD high. For about two and a half weeks my ADHD has been on overdrive! It has felt like my mind is functioning at warp speed and word vomit ensues. I cannot take full responsibility for any strange thing I have said this week because I had almost zero control over what came out of my mouth! I didn’t do anything mean, but I am sure I had given away far too much information! I am certain it has been entertaining for everyone around me though!
There is no easy way to describe how it feels to have ADHD, but the closest thing I can compare it to is that you are trying to hear a personal conversation with someone while you are standing in the middle of a huge crowd. Even when I am in a silent room, it never feels quiet. It’s kinda weird. It doesn’t bother me, and sometimes it is fun to be so hyper.
I told my husband that I was going to have a crash soon because the ADHD high has been going on for so long. I am not sure if other ADHD-ers experience periods when their symptoms are overstimulated, but it does seem to happen to me every now and then. Yesterday happened to be my crash day, and let me tell you, I was utterly exhausted! I am not sure I have ever been that tired! I barely could drive home from work. After going to bed early last night and waking up a little late for work, I am feeling more rested. I may need one more day of good sleep to be back to normal though!