Several months ago I found myself randomly feeling like bursting into tears. I knew my job was causing stress, but I also felt like it was more than that. Like maybe I hadn’t fully processed my year of cancer and quarantine and everything else. So I started seeing a therapist, and she’s been amazing.
I’ve struggled with anxiety most of my life. I remember having my first panic attack when I was in grade school. I learned to live with it, and like a lot of people, also learned to hide it. However, when life got extra crazy—like when Brianna was born 3 months early or when I got divorced—it would surface again. I’ve tried different things along the way. Medication, counseling, wine. I even went through bio-feedback training which helped me recognize how my body reacted to my anxiety (I hold my breath) and how I could relax myself. That has helped me tremendously over the years.
I think what’s helped me the most, though, is simply admitting that sometimes I’m overwhelmed and talking things through with a professional can help. Which is why I’m thankful today, on this last day of Mental Health Awareness Month, for not being ashamed of taking my anxiety seriously and seeking help when I need it. I’ve learned a lot about myself and how to manage my bouts of anxiety in positive ways. And I just feel better.