I woke up with a sense of peace and then I thought, can it be?… Is it really?… Yes it is! It is none other than Thankful Thursday volume 3- the HOLIDAY EDITION! Yay!
I’ve had a lot of challenges recently and also some triumphs and so it only makes sense to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. My computer is acting a bit wonky this morning so I hope it cooperates enough for me to get this posted…
Let Thankful Thursday, the Holiday Edition begin! Ok I’ll start…
1. Yesterday I worked for the first time officially in the Emergency Room. I had a lot of anxiety in the days leading up to it, but I formulated a plan to prepare myself so keep my anxiety at work at bay. And honestly it was really a good day!
I had one major glitch that lasted about an hour and a half. It was complete and utter weirdness, where I felt paranoid and anxious and had major depersonalization. This patient came in who I met a few times in an anonymous 12 step group (Al-Anon) and she was really agitated. We were doing her triage and she said (pointing to me) “I know her, I don’t want her in the room.”
Back at the nurses station the other nurses were asking, How do you know that lady? She says she knows you. I felt myself turn beet red and my heart was pounding out of my chest. I was sweating like I’d just run a 2 minute mile and I could not think. I felt very exposed and vulnerable.
I felt like I was floating outside my body and my voice came out all small and weak but I heard myself mutter, “Oh I think I saw her in church a few times…”
Inside I was dying, thinking this lady is going to spill the beans and tell the nurses I am in Al-Anon and have a husband who used to drink a lot and did this lady hear about my sordid history of drinking and being strung out on pills for years and what if she says something? and on and on and oh I would just die…
I went to the bathroom and remembered to do diaphragmatic breathing and collected myself. I decided I would not add anything to what I’d already said about church and just stay in the present to the best of my ability.
Besides that anxiety glitch, which could have ruined the day (I refused to go near that lady and I just kept busy and focused), the day was pretty nice. I worked with 3 really, really helpful and kind nurses (thank you God) and the other staff were also really nice too. I could not have asked for a better group of people to work with. All things considered, it was a victory!
2. Today is the last day of school for the kids. Then they are home for the loooong winter break. Well it’s only a little over a week. But I think back to last year when I wasn’t working and God how I dreaded this. Long days filled with nothing for me to do except be there to witness teenage and tweenage mood swings and being a mom taxi and worrying about them and feeling like I couldn’t hold it together and waning to just run away…Long days with nothing to do are huge panic attack triggers for me. But this year is different because I have my job to break up the monotony!
3. I am so grateful to have my job. It really helps me to feel balanced and useful and productive. I am so so happy to have work. Being occupied and busy is one of the the best things for my anxiety. And to have kids that are old enougt not to need babysitters anymore- working and trying to juggle daycare was a struggle I am very glad to not have to do anymore.
4. Working for 4 months now and counting. I am so grateful that I have been at my job long enough where I no longer dread going in or lose sleep the night before (well once in awhile) because I am scared I’ll have anxiety and have that horrible feeling that I have to leave.
I still have my moments, but it is better and I am eternally grateful for the sweet passage of time and the familiarity I now have with the people and the layout of the place, because that brings me such comfort. I also don’t feel like I am on the “new employee radar” where people are trying to figure out who is the new chick? I think I am now just another one of them..
5. Christmas lights. I love love love this time of year. I love seeing all the houses and stores with Christmas lights and wreaths. Especially at night. I love the glow of Christmas lights. Bob and I even drive through neighborhoods to see lights. And it’s always midnight when I drive home from work so I get to see all the lights then of course too. So beautiful…
6. Holiday Cheer. I love this time of year fr the fact that everyone just seems more friendly. More smiles. More hi, how are you? in the stores. It feels wonderful to be a part of humanity this time of year. I love the hustle and the bustle and the songs. (I pare it down and don’t go overboard so I don’t stress too much in January with credit card bills.) But just being in Target or even the grocery store now feels cheery and happy. I love it..
7. Simple Christmas, Quiet Christmas. I already had my parents here a few weeks ago and my sister and her family were here last weekend. So we are done with holiday visiting/ entertaining. Our Christmas will be small and quiet weekend with just the 4 of us and I am just fine with that. Visiting the in-laws on Christmas day which means no cooking for me. And no more stressing over having a dusted, vacuumed house. Very thankful for that.
8. I gave someone a heartfelt hug. This morning at 7am I saw my neighbor down the street getting into the moving van to move away to another state. We were never great friends and she was in the clique of girls in the neighborhood that used to make me feel so left out. I just walked over to her and gave her a big hug and kiss and wished her and her family all the best in their new home. I gave her some Christmas cookies for the ride and that was it. It felt good.
9. My progress. I am thankful to have made some strides in my own personal anxiety recovery this year. I did the job interviewing thing, worked part time as a school nurse sub and then found the job I have now.
I also worked on- and mastered- my gym anxiety, went gluten-free in my diet, and I am getting along better with my husband since I am working on my anxiety, stress, and anger management issues and actively trying not to be mean to him.
I also just feel better and more accepting of myself in general. And I am looking forward to 2012. I will make more strides in the new year, I’m sure of it.
Ok, that’s my gratitude list for today. I love focusing on being thankful. It puts me in the best mood!
How are YOU doing with your anxiety? Are you more or less anxious than usual? Have you begun to identify your anxiety symptoms & triggers? Are you using your anxiety self help skills effectively? I certainly hope you are doing well, and will consider focusing on some things to be grateful for on this wonderful day…
Please share your list below!
I wish you peace,