Anxiety, Stress and PMS

It was the perfect storm. A combination of pre-existing anxiety, a mountain of stress and PMS. But guess what? I survived it! But not without a lot of love, compassion, help and understanding from other people.

I’ve been on a hiatus from writing which was only in part from the title. The other part has been due to a total disruption of my daily life – which contributed to the anxiety and stress.

We’re undergoing a major renovation on our house and have temporarily moved into a travel trailer at my parents house…with our three cats. I’m not sure if challenging is the right word – let’s say it’s been an adventure.

All I can say is thank God for my parents. For being so kind and gracious to not only have us stay in their yard but also take care of us – particularly that first week. I honestly believe that had it not been for them, we would have been eating cereal three meals a day.

As difficult as the lack of routine has been, I am truly grateful we have the means to make the necessary repairs to our house. I feel blessed to be where we’re at because only ten years ago living in a travel trailer in my parents yard wouldn’t have been a choice – it would have been a necessity.

Back to the title. A month ago, we had to pack our house, demolish our large deck as well as demolish a shed attached to the carport. It all had to be done in a week.

My anxiety kicked in. I was completely overwhelmed. My stress level made me feel like I would explode. Yet I knew in my mind that somehow, someway, we would get it done. It didn’t seem to matter what my mind believed because my body and emotions were contradicting it.

I had two meltdowns (I’m talking hysterical crying mess) while my poor husband held me and tried to convince me it would be okay. I couldn’t make him understand that I knew it would be okay because all he could see was that I wasn’t.

I called in sick to work thinking a day at home would be good. Then I called in the next day and my boss called me. I had a meltdown on the phone with her. She was amazing, compassionate and no -judgemental. We decided I would take the week off.

But I have to tell you that during all of this, I was embarrassed, confused and berating myself constantly. I felt so weak. And for the life of me, I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t handle what was going on.

My emotions didn’t match the situation. I knew that but I couldn’t get a hold of myself. Then, the instant my period arrived, my stress level dropped about 50% and I actually felt like I could handle things.

I don’t usually like to share so much information but I feel like it’s important because if I’ve gone through it then maybe someone else is struggling through it as well.

Now that I look back on the week from hell, I have so much compassion for myself. Having any single one of the issues in the title can be overwhelming but to go through all three at once is a true accomplishment in my opinion!

Whatever you’re going through, try to be kind to yourself. Remember that you’re not alone. Sharing our troubles with other people not only gives them an opportunity to help but it takes some of the power away from our own emotions.

I’m not sure who said it but I read somewhere that pain shared is pain halved. Let people surprise you with their compassion, empathy and understanding. They might also surprise you by sharing their own story and helping you feel like you’re not alone.