Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Temper tantrum?

I think I am having a bit of a temper tantrum.

I HATE taking medication just to be able to think straight enough to type this, or to drive home!!

My anxiety is over-whelming me at the moment. I had to take something to calm down enough to get home without feeling sick to my stomach. Which has been happening all week....
... the being sick to my stomach part.

I have had bouts of nausea and thought it was a stomach bug. Then after it was still bad yesterday, on the advice of my doctor, I went to eat before I went back to work. I thought for sure I would get sick.

Imagine my surprise when I felt better!

That was when I knew that most of how I've been feeling physically is anxiety and depression related.

As I mentioned, I went to my doctor yesterday. We talked about all that has gone on with Henry passing away, and trying to deal with this "stuff" in the moment, and my relative numbness lately.

After talking for a while, he told me that if he increased my medications, or changed them, I wouldn't feel any different or get any benefit from them right now. He was very hesitant to change anything until I am out a little further from these events of the past few weeks.

Then he strongly suggested that I consider going to a counselor again.

Interestingly enough, as I had pulled into the parking lot yesterday, I found myself wondering if that was something that I should do, or when I would know it was the right time. Then I dismissed it with the thought that my doctor would know when it was time and that he would tell me what he thought.

Little did I know that I would hear what he thought in the next half hour.

Counseling again.

Well, I got back to work from my appointment. After getting something to eat, as requested. As I worked through the afternoon, I found that I was actually getting something accomplished, which was more than I had hoped for earlier in the day. When I got up that morning it was all I could do to get out of bed.

I eventually called my friend Cindy. I told her how the appointment went. And what my doctor had said about counseling.

After talking for a bit, she weighed in with her opinion. She thought it was a good idea, and reminded me that she is going to be gone for this whole next month. I'm not going to have her readily available to talk to, even though she will have her cell phone with her. She urged me to make the call.

I got off the phone and continued to work.

Then I got a call from my other friend, Cindy D. (Yes, there are two of them now.... so this "new to you" Cindy, will always be Cindy D. just to keep them straight!!!) :)

Anyway, as Cindy D. opened the conversation with me, she asked how I was doing.

Point blank, I responded, "I don't even know how to answer that question anymore."

It's the truth. I am depressed. I know that. But that's about all I know. I am frustrated with myself. I am anxious, to the point of almost having panic attacks. Other than that, I just don't know what to say. At all.

She wasn't put off by that, thankfully. She and I talked for a while, and I know she was treading carefully because she didn't want to step on my toes, or make me uncomfortable as this is a new friendship. But she was very kind and gracious. When I finally "broke" and told her about my doctor's appointment and his strong suggestion... she said to me that she agreed with him too.

We talked for a while longer, and she encouraged me a lot. She has been through some things in her past that helped her to recognize what I was going through and where I am at, whether I am able to describe it or not. To use her words, I am in shock still from Henry's death, and denial too, I suppose.

Did you know me, the empathy person, who can just about cry with anyone, can't cry now? I have wanted to. Felt the lump in my throat. Nothin's there. And the pressure's building.

Cindy D. was such an encouragement to me that after we got off the phone, I paced the church. I know that doesn't sound encouraging... but for me it was. I paced and came back to my office. I got up and paced some more. Came back and answered a couple of phone calls and tried to do some more work.

Then got up and paced some more.

Finally I found myself in the sanctuary, where I think God had wanted me all along.

I paced in there too.
I talked out loud. About calling a counselor. About what I should do. How logical it would be to go to one. How logical it would be to NOT go to one.

I kept pacing through the rows of chairs, keeping one eye on the sky cause a storm was coming.

I came back to my office and computer. Sat down. Then jumped up. It wasn't because of the clap of thunder that came then, I couldn't sit still.

I was pacing in the sanctuary again, and finally stopped and faced the front. Then I talked to God a bit, and felt like He was pressing on me to make the call.

I walked back to my office and with shaking hands dialed a number that I haven't called in over a year and a half.

"Charis Counseling, may I help you?"
"Um, yeah, I think. This is Heather Kudla. I used to be a patient of Tricia, and was wondering if she might have an opening for a new patient, well, for me in her schedule."
"She sure does, let me just pull your name back up..."

And so the conversation continued.

When I hung up, I had an appointment.

With Tricia. The same person I saw before. On Monday night.

Do you know what my Monday is going to look like?!?!

To get to this appointment, I have to leave work early, race home to the farm to get the kids and bring them into town for swimming lessons. Dave's mom is going to meet me there on her way through from work, and "take over" for me at the lessons, and I am going to race from the swimming pool, back up to Wausau for my appointment.... by 6pm.

This is totally nuts. I am traveling a half hour to spend a half hour with the kids before I turn back around and drive a half hour back into town.

I'm tempted to cancel, but if I did it would be another 2 weeks before I could get in to see her.

Oh, it will be good to see Tricia and get caught up. But I didn't want to get caught up in a counseling office, but rather over a cup of coffee or something, in a setting where we could be friends, not a counselor/client relationship.

Both my Cindy's reminders though keep coming back. I may just need this one appointment to have her help me get back on track. I may need more too. I don't know. I don't know anything.

I just know I haven't ever lost someone close to me. I have never gone through a grieving process in "real time" close to the source of the grief. I don't know what to expect. I fear my emotions, and when they might pop out, or what they might be like when they do.

I guess I need someone with counseling experience and the tools to really help me, walk through this with me.

Maybe that "temper tantrum" I mentioned at the beginning of my post really wasn't that at all. Maybe it was a bit of anger at the situation I am in, and at how I'm dealing with it, and how I'm relating to God through it too.

I still hate taking medication to calm down, but at least now I don't feel as sick to my stomach. And at least now, I have been able to write for the first time in a long while.

I have even found that I can't journal. It's been hard not having my writing. Things have piled up, I have a lot to do for work, and then a lot to do with my family. Writing has taken a back seat.

Thank you for bearing with me as I have vented.
Maybe my next post will be a bit more organized.
I'm not making any promises!

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