I’m Getting Cabin Fever


It’s been snowing for what feels like forever here in upstate New York, and I am starting to get cabin fever.

The kids have been home from school for the past three days and now it’s Friday and we’re heading into a weekend of — even more snow. The first 2 days were fine because the snow kept everyone busy, me with the shoveling and the kids with helping me and playing.

Here’s a picture of the view from my kitchen as I sat down to work this morning… Gulp.

So I find that as I’m sitting here I have a little knot in my stomach. I don’t like being holed up in the house. The feeling of being trapped makes me uneasy and I notice that I have a low level feeling of anxiety.cabin fever

I’ve had panic disorder long enough to know what I must do to weather this snowstorm emotionally.  I have to keep busy, reach out to others, and actively practice gratitude.

Keeping busy

Keeping busy might seem like a  no brainer — did you see my back porch? I can shovel till kingdom come, or till my back gives out, whichever comes first.  The thing with my anxiety is, it’s hard to get moving.  I’ve been shoveling for 3 days now and there’s a big part of me that just wants to lay on the couch and eat.  Which I did for 2 hours last night. I ate dinner then I made popcorn then I ate other junk and topped it all off with a big bowl of instant cake mix.

So the couch is calling me and I know as soon as I finish writing this post I must not give in to it. Why? Because ultimately that will only make me feel like crap. I need to stay busy and engaged. In my 12 step program we like to say, when I get busy I get better.

Reaching out

Reaching out to others is always important in my recovery from anxiety and panic, but today it’s even more crucial. When I feel anxious, my natural tendency is to isolate. And this is the exact opposite of what I must do in order to feel better. So reach out I must, and this means via telephone with my friends and family,  and by actively engaging with my children (and listening to them, which can be hard when I feel like this).

I can always reach out on anxiety forums too, and share my experience with folks who know exactly what I’m going through.  By posting on this blog, I am reaching out too, in the sincere hopes that someone who reads this will benefit.

Actively practice gratitude

Gratitude is a key element in my anxiety recovery. I keep a gratitude journal by my bed and I write 5 things that I am grateful for every day. I’ve been doing this for about 2 years now. I know last night after vegging on the couch and my date with the cake mix, I felt pretty crappy. When I was laying in bed, I went through and read my 2010 gratitude journal. It gave me a nice lift and I was able to drift off into a semi restful sleep. I am having sleep issues because of the Klonopin withdrawal, but last night wasn’t too bad.

I know today I need pay special attention to where I am emotionally and I can start being grateful right there:

Today I am so grateful that I am 75% off my Klonopin and that I am working my panic recovery program successfully. Today I am so grateful that my children are upstairs playing quietly, and that they are safe and healthy.  My husband made it to work safely after 4 hours and I am grateful.

And now I’m ready to face my day 🙂

I wish you peace,

Jill G.

ps.- Thankfully, there are a number of effective anxiety self help programs available to panic attack sufferers today. See which one is right for you or if you like, you can work with me . Please get started today and reclaim your life from fear.

Be Sociable, Share!
This entry was posted in Agoraphobia, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Healthy Lifestyle, Panic Attacks, Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *