A ways back, while I was still in a relationship with my ex and feeling like crap, I went on anti-anxiety medication. I was on it for almost a year. It’s the first time I’ve ever needed help with stress and anxiety, and I remember feeling deflated that I’d been put on medication. But I can see now that I needed it. Yes, there are natural ways to go through what I was going through, but at that time, I needed help.
If you’ve been reading my blog, you know that I went off the pills about a month after we broke up, and I haven’t had to go back on them since. (Proud moment).
Recently I’ve had a more than normal amount of stress in my career. Nothing crazy, but a lot. I found myself lying bed at note going over and over what I needed to do the next day. One symptom I had when I was at my worse was the feeling that my throat would close and I would stop breathing. I’ve felt the same push at the base of my tongue lately, and I know that it’s because of the stress I feel.
When it first happened, I was terrified. I had a full on panic attack (another thing I’d never had before) which lead to me going on medication. This time, I knew what it was, and I was overall in control enough to realize I needed to do something to help. If it was late, I would go through some breathing and stretching exercises. If it was early, I went for a long walk or bike ride.
The point of this story is that I never felt I needed to go back on the pills. I hope that the one time in my life I needed them will be the only time I do, but I recognize that there are times when the natural ways are just not affective. The difference between me now and then is that I can see the stress in my life, understand it, and manage my anxiety. Before, because my relationship was so bad, it was all encompassing. I couldn’t see the edges of it. I couldn’t figure out the cause. I didn’t realize just how unhappy I was. Now that I’ve worked so hard at knowing myself and understanding ‘me’, anxiety and stress isn’t so frightening.
This is meant to provide some hope out there for people who feel they’ll never be able to let go of the pills. I could easily have jumped back on them, but I chose not too. Really, I wasn’t even tempted. But if you have to have them, if there’s no way out, don’t beat yourself up about it. Use them, let them work, and focus on the future of being without them again. It’s possible.