I was overwhelmed by all the messages and comments on my post about finally seeking help for anxiety. I have always been very open about the fact I suffer from it and so had lots of questions and messages of support from others over the past year or so… but I hope by finally seeking help I can help encourage others to do the same.
I first started feeling more anxious than normal in the year after I had Vivienne. It was more a sense of uncertainty. Like I wasn’t quite sure what I was doing day to day. Going from a full time job commuting into London and a routine of a week… to having no set plans, just a baby and a sense of freedom that we essentially could do or go wherever we wanted. A lovely freedom looking back but at the time it gave me this strange sense of uneasiness.
I got on top of it and when I started working again, and writing the blog it had all but gone.
Then after I had Margot it reared its ugly head again. So badly. We moved house when Margot was just a few months old and that certainly didn’t help either. Then Vivienne being so unwell before Christmas and our horrid scare. It had got to the point where evenings were spent practising breathing techniques and reading anxiety books instead of relaxing and enjoying time with my husband. In the day I could just be walking down the road pushing the buggy… and out of nowhere my chest would tighten and the dreaded anxiety take hold. I couldn’t put my finger on the triggers. It was so frustrating as I am the sort of person that likes to figure things out (a magicians worst nightmare at parties) and with my background in psychology I always thought I could ‘sort myself out’.
Meeting with a friend that had similar feelings and finally took herself off to the doctors was the final push I needed. I made an appointment – thought I was going to vomit in the waiting room, cried my eyes out in the doctors room and then walked away with a spring in my step. I did it, I asked for help and now I have it.
Personally I think mine is a mixture of hormones post pregnancy and from past traumatic experiences – the death of a best friend, Viviennes meningitis at 18 months old and pneumonia at Christmas, a traumatic birth with Margot and the stay in hospital afterwards… things I perhaps thought I was fine about at the time and had ‘dealt’ with but are still there, little worries in my head.
I start CBT next month and cannot wait. I want to learn how to control my anxiety and I want to get on and enjoy my life without the constant intrusive feelings of being anxious. I am always such a happy person, love my life and what I do, my children, husband and my family… and these anxious feelings are so unwelcome. I am looking forward to updating you soon on how they’re gone… and for all those who might feel the same I urge you to seek help too. You cannot regret it.