Friday, August 22, 2014

Anxiety Dreams and Conversations

On Wednesday, I made a same-day doctor appointment with my medical doctor, mainly to stay current on my medications and keep in contact more often than I did when I was uninsured. I'm losing weight now, which is good. I've tied a lot of emotions into that and I'm actually managing to untie those emotions (both positive and negative) and focus on the process itself. I'm not always successful, but I'm active every day.

My blood pressure was up, because of course it was. She knows to expect that, and it was high but not dangerous. She knows that between agoraphobia and anxiety my blood pressure goes up and down, and that was a same-day appointment I was not expecting, and the suddenness of the occasion strikes me right in the nervousness. After the week and a half leading up to it, well...

But I'm doing better. I'm surprised how much getting caught up in the big Simpsons marathon on FXX helps me have something to do; I wasn't going to bother, but damn, I'm having fun.

I do have this problem where my left arm is sort of non-stop tingly, especially in my hand, which hurts on occasion. I know it sounds worrisome, but it's actually lingering effects from the constant anxiety attacks. It happens to me. I remember walking around for a month last year thinking I had become diabetic, but it was actually a prolonged anxiety attack. It just takes a while to go away.

Side note: it's interesting how many things that feel like dire physical maladies turn out to just be physical manifestations of anxiety or depression. It's turned out over the last year that I'm actually in much better shape than I've believed all these years; most of it is anxiety or depression. Make no mistake, I need to make a lot of health changes, most of them revolving around shedding the weight I put on during my Lexapro days, but I'm not anywhere near in as poor health as I thought. Good news.

Still, the anxiety will linger. After the doctor's visit, Becca and I went to the laundromat for a few hours. I don't dry my shirts because I don't want them to shrink. At some point, my tactile sensitivity went into overdrive on shirts, and now, except for a few shirts that I bought a few years ago that are made of a light cotton, I hate wearing the shirts I own. Those cheap 100% cotton Hanes or Fruit of the Loom shirts? Too heavy and uncomfortable on my skin. So I don't dry those shirts and I'm a little too guarded with them.

I had put them in the basket to take them home for hanging, and then sat down on the couch of the laundromat's TV area and sat watching the news. Suddenly, I snapped awake.

"How long was I asleep?" I asked Becca.

"About three to five minutes," she answered.

"Wow, I'm anxious," I said. "That was enough time for me to fall deeply asleep and still have a stress dream where I murdered somebody."

Murdering somebody in a dream is something that happens to me during times of extreme anxiety.

"Was it me?" she asked.

"No, it's never you. It's never anyone specific. It's just some person."

"What happened?"

I explained: "In the dream, this guy was walking around here drunk, and he spilled bleach all over my shirts as a joke. He was laughing about it and I was yelling, 'Why would you do that?? Those are my shirts! I'm poor, I can't buy new ones, I don't even know if they make these anymore!' And then I knocked him down, squatted over his chest, and was just squeezing his throat with my hands harder and harder and harder, and then I suddenly woke up. I guess I'm just worried about everything right now. It's this general feeling of the bottom dropping out."

Becca stared at me for a second, then said: "Maybe Clorox should use that for its next commercial."


Roger Owen Green said...

Sorry for your stuff, but Becca's comment made me laugh!

SamuraiFrog said...

That's why I ended with it. Everything above it was just so heavy. Made me laugh, too! She knew just how to help.