This week is…rough.
Basically, my body is trying to break me. Several things have come home to roost at once, and the combination is a challenge. Just trying to stay above water.
Strangely enough, the thing that’s bothering me the least is how behind I am on my word count. I’m really behind. But that’s okay, because I can still manage to write a couple hundred words a day and feel alright. I know right now, I need to take care of me first and write second. My mental and physical health come first.
So what’s going on with me? Stand by for minor rant in 3…2…1…
- I am allergic to summer. This isn’t hyperbole. My skin is extremely sensitive and I have smaller than normal pores for sweat, so the combination of heat and anything coming in contact with my epidermal layer (be it lotion, shaving cream, suntan lotion, bug spray, etc.) makes me break out in a very angry, very red, very itchy case of hives. Like right now, my body is entirely covered painful red bumps. I am very itchy, all the time, and it’s slowly driving me nuts.
- I’m struggling with my anxiety. Normally, I have a totally normal level of anxiety. I stress out sometimes, blow off some steam, and find my perspective again. I’m usually good at taking care of myself and keeping a level head. But lately it feels like something is winding up inside me tighter and tighter, and it’s very hard to breathe. I’ve started obsessing over everything, taking everything personally, my mood swinging from furious to depressed to neurotic to nothing. Lately, I’ve found it difficult to find my balance.
Normally, my go to fix for my anxiety attacks in plugging in my headphones and taking a very long walks. I’m not sure why, but walking really calms me down. But with the 90 degree heat and the hives…well, leaving the safety of my AC isn’t helping. Which makes getting a handle on my anxiety much harder to do.
- My anxiety is messing up my sleep. And not getting enough sleep is no bueno. I’m constantly exhausted, I’m mainlining caffeine (which isn’t helping), and am more sluggish than normal. I don’t like it.
Now, I’ve recognized what’s wrong. So what am I doing about it?
Well, for the hives, I have no choice but to take antihistamines and baste myself in hydrocortisone and try really really really hard not to scratch. Which is easier said than done. Scratching feels really good.
And generally, I’m trying to avoid the outdoors. Because it’s too darn hot, and I’m too darn allergic.
For the anxiety, I’m trying to detach. Whenever I feel myself starting to get worked up, I mentally take a step away and breathe. And keep breathing. And when I’m ready, I’ll try to view what’s upsetting me with a detached clinical eye. I basically make a proof of my problem (oh proofs, I haven’t done those since high school…), try to view things logically and find the natural conclusion. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn’t. It’s a work in progress. But trying to view my problems from a distance, as if it’s happening to someone else, makes it easier to take stock of everything affecting me, and not just the negative things. Usually, it’s a calming perspective.
Sometimes it’s not. I’m working on it.
I also found meditating helps. I really don’t unplug, and I’m trying to do that more. I always feel better when I stop and take the time to focus on my breathing.
I found this meditation helps too. It’s silly, but helps remind me not to take everything personally. And it just makes me laugh.
As for the sleep thing, I’m trying to go to bed earlier. Unplugging and meditating helps. But I think the sleep thing will be the last thing to get fixed.
So for Week 3, I’m totally behind. And, considering what’s going on, that’s okay. It’s not bothering me. I’m able to write a little bit every day, and that little bit helps me destress and lose myself for a while. Right now, I’d rather focus on taking care of me.
Which is the first step in the right direction.