Anxiety and depression talks, Part 1
By KELLIE KAMRYN
As a child, I woke up at night with inexplicable fear. Oftentimes, I’d be sweating and have painful bowel movements. By morning, I’d be so tired, I’d forget the incident. I had regular stomach aches and my parents would take me to the doctor time and again but to no avail. At the age of 12, I had an appendicitis attack which resulted in the removal of the offending organ. Doctors decided that must have been my trouble all along—recurring appendicitis attacks that would flare up and disappear.
As a teenage athlete, I was tired a lot. I blamed it on training and trying to maintain good grades. In university, I figured I’d feel more rested once I graduated. At 25, after the birth of my first child, I began having panic attacks during the day, which included feelings of paranoia and thoughts about not being good enough and being judged when most people probably didn’t give me a second thought. I went on medication for a time to help, all the while wondering why I had panic attacks at that age when I’d never had them before. After the birth of my second child, I was so tired, I didn’t recognize the signs of depression. I lived in a fog for about six months, until it lifted. With my third and fourth children, the depression resurfaced with a vengeance. Stomach aches and fatigue became my norm.
Anxiety wasn’t a word in our vocabularies back when I was a kid. I thought everyone felt this way. Talking about emotions and their impact on the body is more recent in mainstream medicine. I figured that at some point in my life, I would feel calm and peaceful, and I’d sleep well. I didn’t speak about how I felt; instead I pretended nothing caused me fear. I didn’t know how to explain it anyway and I kept myself in denial about my emotional state. Physical exercise dissipated the nervous energy. While it was good for temporary relief – getting me through my teens and into adulthood – after multiple childbirths, eventually my body began to give out because I couldn’t process out the fear energy. The more I exercised, the more I hurt.
How do you ask for help if you don’t even know you’ve got a problem? I didn’t see it as a problem because it became a way of life.
In an article I read recently concerning the death of celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, the author wrote about anxiety, suicide and depression as an entity that doesn’t leave until you are able to break the mental programming running behind it. Those words resonated with me. The hum of anxiety had become so constant in my life. I didn’t realize how it sang its melody through every decision I made regarding relationships, career, family, you name it. Anxiety decided to sing a few bars for me to make sure the song played for eternity.
In order for me to heal, I first had to feel areas in my life that caused me fear. Since I had so many, this healing journey has been far from fun, but the rewards are lasting. As I write this, I’m crying with joy to finally hear the end of the tune. I’m creating a new harmony of love and joy for my life. For the first time, I sleep through the night without waking with the terrifying need to solve all my problems before daylight.
I wish I could say it was a one-stop healing shop to breaking the mental programming of anxiety, but wasn’t. It’s an on-going process and one I am conscious of daily. I have to be willing to hear when it rears its ugly head and recognize how it’s trying to make me feel. The anxiety is real, but the stories it’s telling me about myself are not.
One of the most difficult things I’ve had to do is sit still when anxiety decides to visit. For me, this was key. Often I wanted to cook, bake, clean or exercise when anxiety made its rounds. Learning to sit and connect to my breath has been essential in allowing the anxiety to surface and be released from my body. Communicating my emotions to the significant people in my life has been important for me, as well. That in and of itself can trigger anxiety and, thankfully, I’ve found people who support me in my energy healing work. I spoke with my doctor and we found alternatives to medication that helped me along with ensuring I had the right vitamin content to help heal my body and brain from the years of stress.
I’ve also found a martial art – which I now teach with my partner – that has allowed my body to heal energetically and be stronger physically. I will share more about the physical healing aspects to anxiety in a subsequent article.
Today, I’ll leave you with this mantra:
“I am not this pain,
this pain is not me,
I breathe my breath
as my breath breathes me.”
Remember you are so much more than your pain. Get help and don’t let it win. Many blessings to you.
© Kellie Kamryn, 2017 www.kelliekamryn.com
Kellie Kamryn is an award-winning erotic romance writer and voice actor, as well as former columnist for Evolved World. Her articles receive a wide reception on her personal website and elsewhere for her commitment to keeping it real, and helping people get in touch with their inner truth by sharing her personal experiences. Kellie loves to hear from readers, so if you have an experience to share, please comment!