Lol. Well, I knew this would happen. Like every project, I get excited and all gung-ho about it for awhile, and then…other things come up and I just…sort of… let the project get buried. Then I start to feel bad and spiral down into a pit of self-doubt and negativity.
Accept, I’m not going to do that this time. I DO feel bad, but really, it’s not like I’m getting paid to do this. I have no expectations to meet except my own, so why be so hard on myself? Yeah.This time I think I’m going to “shake it off, shake it off”.
So I started this post on the day after 4th of July. I really feel like I need to finish it, because, really, what happened that weekend is something that can happen anytime, anywhere. Actually, the same cause/effect scenario repeated itself THIS weekend, so I guess I just validated my point right there.
But enough with this nonsense. Here is the good stuff:
It’s the first day of reality after a long weekend of celebrating freedom with fireworks, alcohol, and general debauchery… and I’m still wasted. I got out of bed this morning and managed to muddle through my responsibilities, but all I want to do is go back to bed and recover like everyone else. Sounds reasonable, right? If only I had participated in illegal shenanigans, channeled my inner pyro, or drank in excess. Truth is I didn’t. Nope.
What I have folks, is an anxiety hangover.
For those of you unfamiliar with the term, it’s basically when your body has been on “high alert” for such an extended period of time that when the “threat” is over (threat meaning whichever anxiety trigger was being pumped) you’re left completely exhausted…drained of any and all energy reserves… just…done. For the most part, I try to avoid my anxiety “triggers” as much as possible. That, combined with the right dose of medication, ensures that I remain balanced enough to function.
Sometimes, though, just like eating an entire quart of Rocky Road ice cream in one sitting, you do things you know you’ll regret later.
It started innocently enough. My husband and I were invited to play games over at a friends house last Friday night. The introvert in me was quick to decline, but the other part of me that hasn’t socialized in MONTHS said I should go, so… we went. When we arrived,
I took my place at the table and spent the next couple of hours allowing the 5 extroverts around me to dominate the conversation (as per usual), and inwardly wince as they got louder and louder as the night (and the drinking) progressed. *Trigger Warning* I was also trying really hard to not be overwhelmed by the amount of stuff covering every surface in our host’s house. Another *Trigger Warning*. I could feel the anxiety starting to climb up from the pit of my stomach into my chest, but before it completely unleashed itself, my husband and I were were able to excuse ourselves and get the heck out of dodge. Phew. close call.
The next day, we were invited out to a friend’s lake cabin. The only people we knew were the hosts, which meant we would be hanging out with a group of people we didn’t know for an undetermined amount of time, forcing to make small talk. I knew this going in, but I tried to prepare myself, really I did. From the time we woke up though, to the time we left, I felt agitated. I was irritable, and I couldn’t really figure out why. I thought maybe I was dehydrated, or hungry, but the feeling was still there even after I satiated my thirst and appetite. And it only got worse. The traffic was so bad, what should have been a 20 min. drive turned into an hour, which meant we would be late *trigger warning*. My husband and I decided to pull into a shopping center to pick up some additional items, and upon returning to the car from the brief excursion, it happened. I broke down.
By “breaking down”, I mean crying. The anxiety starts to squeeze your chest so hard, that the only release seems to come in the form of tears. This time, though, I started to laugh, too. “THIS is why I’ve been feeling so agitated/grumpy!” Sometimes, as I found out, you aren’t necessarily aware of the physiological changes that are happening., until it’s too late. Anyway…the crying eventually subsided, and I was in a much better state of mind by the time we arrived at the lake, and it stayed that way for the rest of the evening.
The next morning, though. I woke up feeling completely emotionally and physically drained. It was the kind of exhaustion that no amount of caffeine can cure, and even though I had a whole day of things planned, all I wanted to do was sit on the couch and rest, because
I was, simply, WASTED from an anxiety hangover.