Saturday, July 14, 2012

Feeling Better, Getting my Butt Kicked, Still Going

Hello Friends:

So my anxieties kicked my butt royally this fourth of July.  I'm still upset about it.  I had really been doing pretty well.  Camping, going to the store, travel ... it was all looking pretty good.  I figured attending a fourth of July party wouldn't be too much to ask.


It doesn't seem like it should matter that much, but I was really upset.  I had been planning to go for two weeks.  I sent back a very enthusiastic 'yes' to the invitation.  I was even thinking about what I wanted to chat about with the hostess, what to bring, and that I would certainly have fun.  Their house isn't too far from the DC fireworks, so that was going to be an added bonus.

But it didn't happen.  For three nights leading up to the fourth, I didn't sleep.  I didn't know what was bothering me, which is crazy in retrospect.  I was obviously totally stressed out about this party.  Going into DC on the fourth is a bit nutso, anyway, what with the crowds, the Metro breaking down, no parking, hours in stop and go traffic, etc. etc.  That is on top of the usual party stresses, like not knowing anyone and not being able to eat any of the food because of OCD issues.  Still, I didn't realize I was totally freaking out until that morning.

I got up on the fourth and was terrified.  I couldn't beat the feeling.  I tried a bunch of my different coping mechanisms, but kept finding myself back up in bed, shivering.  Scared.  Feeling very trapped.  Took me a few hours to admit the situation and leave a message that I wouldn't be coming to the party after all.  It really, really hurt.  I spent the afternoon in tears.  It is so different from that depression thing, where you don't want to go anywhere.  My depression is under control right now.  I wanted to go.  It was all of the anxiety disorders that stopped me this time.  So frustrating.  I don't know how to describe it, but I'll bet you understand.

My spouse was very supportive, as always.  He was disappointed that we didn't go to the party, but he went out and got us some beer, hot dogs, chips, and ice cream so we could have our own little party.  Then we watched the fireworks online.  I love fireworks.  I hope I can see them in person next year.  Seeing them online when you'd rather be out is a little pathetic.

Still, I don't want to end on a downer, because a few days later I had a much more positive experience.  My spouse is a huge baseball fan, and does not get to go to as many games as he'd like because I have anxiety issues with the crowds, the food, the dirt and grime, and all the rest.  But a friend had invited us along with a small group to a box suite.  Wow.  Never been in one of those boxes before.  Wow.  The idea of being able to see a game in a sort of nice, isolated situation had a lot of appeal.

So we went out to the game.  Still had to deal with the crowds getting in, but once we were in the box.  Well.  Wow.  Air conditioning.  Our own area for concessions.  The place is carpeted.  Our own set of seats outside, with a railing to set them off.  Right behind home plate.  Our own bathroom!!  I'll say that again ... our own bathroom!!  It was truly awesome.

I am now spoiled for life.  I'll probably not get the chance again, and any other game I attend will just not compare.  I'd never imagined that going to a baseball game could be so low-anxiety.  It felt so good to be able to get out and see some friends after my disappointment two days earlier.  I wonder if I'll ever be able to make myself deal with being one of the normals again.  Wow.

Anyway, I hope your fourth, and this first part of July have been treating you well!

Your Hostess With Neuroses

Image credit/info: Fireworks, bayassa, Flikr via Creative Commons CC 2.0


Shannon said...

I have missed many things before due to my anxiety and my social anxiety. It sucks, but glad you were able to turn it around a few days later with a positive experience. How do all seem to get so lucky and have great spouses?? Maybe crazy attracts the opposite? LOL

Shannon said...

**How do we all seem to get so lucky and have great spouses?**

Elizabeth said...

Awww... Gosh do I do that feeling of wanting so badly to do something and not being able to. Hugs.

Tina Fariss Barbour said...

I understand the anxiety of wanting to go someplace but being too upset to go. I have missed many social occasions because of my anxiety. I'm really glad you were able to go out and enjoy yourself a couple of days later.

71º & Sunny said...

I'm sorry your plans for the Fourth got sidetracked by anxiety. I certainly know what that feels like and it is awful. We all have rough times like that. Unfortunately, recovering from anxiety is kind of a bumpy road. I'm so glad you had such a great time at the ball game though! Wow. That DOES sound like fun. I've never been in a box, but I sure would like to do that some day!

Kate Kiernan said...

I can definitely relate to your feelings of anxiety during a holiday. I didn't go out at all on the 4th because I have trouble dealing with crowds and finding a parking space, etc... But really I wanted to stay home, though I thought that I'd hear firecrackers, but there was not a peep. My cats were grateful. Good for you for going to the baseball game!

Cristeen said...

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The Blue Morpho said...

Hello Shannon - I have no idea how I got the great guy, I am just so glad he's there!

Elizabeth and Tina - Yeah, that trapped feeling sucks. It's hard to beat down the I want to go but can't blues.

71 - The box was fabulous! But given how much my spouse likes baseball, I am going to have to figure out how to deal when the box is not an option :)

Kate - The crowd thing is really tough. I still don't get how people don't seem to mind so little personal space.

Days In The Life Of Susan, An Animal Shelter Worker Who Has Bipolar Disorder said...

Hi Blue Morpho, I'm Susan and have Bipolar Disorder, O.C.D, anxiety and agoraphobia. So glad I found your blog! I haven't had time to go though your post throughly, but I'm really interested in what you've got to say, hope you accept my invite for your blog, feel free to check mine out too! Susan :) Ps, I follow Tina Fariss Barbour's blog, and she follows mine so hopefully we have things in common :)

Days In The Life Of Susan, An Animal Shelter Worker Who Has Bipolar Disorder said...

Hi Blue Morpho, sorry to hear you couldn't make it to your party, good though that you had an in house party, then got to the baseball game :) I don't know the reason why you find eating in public difficult, but I have the same problem, when I have to eat in public I feel that EVERYONE is looking at me, judging, critizing, watching me eat. So I take every mouthful consciously, make sure I take small mouthfuls, chew well. Also if the cups, salt and pepper, knives, forks, napkins etc aren't set in a perfect way, my way, I get so stressed I jiggle my legs and shake. I am improving though, I can drink at a cafe now no problem, mind you it is the same cafe I compulsively go to every day, same time, same table, arrange the things on the table, jiggle my legs deep in thought at my laptop. Anyway sorry for raving on, keep well, and look forward to bigger and brighter things! Susan :)

The Blue Morpho said...

Hello Days! Thanks for coming by the blog and commenting - I'm really glad you've found something useful here. I follow tons of blogs and always find something to help or to raise my spirits somewhere out there! I'm better about some of the cognitive dissonance in my environment, like spoons being lined up, but a little worse about general anxiety. It comes and goes, but always seems to be trending up. So we keep on keeping on!

Days In The Life Of Susan, An Animal Shelter Worker Who Has Bipolar Disorder said...

Hi Blue Morpho, thanks for following my blog! For me it's tables, chairs, cutlery, glasses etc, even at a cafe where I go everyday, it seems to be worse at places other than home, probably because I have everything in order at my home, and other places aren't organised. General anxiety? All the time, at home, and out. Anyway I look forward to reading your posts and replying. Susan :)

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