What Tool Made the Difference?

Have you ever thrown every possible tool at a problem to be solved, only to realize later that you have no idea what actually helped? I tend to do this. I’ve been doing pretty good with my anxiety for a few weeks (gotta appreciate the victories when you have them) and this past week it has started creeping back in. It’s not back full force, but I’ve started waking with it (a few times in the middle of the night, also in the morning). It’s like it’s lurking on the periphery, waiting to creep fully back in to wreck havoc in my life for awhile.

Things have become extremely stressful for me in the last few weeks. I’m only 3 months from graduating with my second Bachelor’s degree, so I’m in the thick of intense school work. Then the hurricane hit, shutting down my school for weeks (but not changing graduation dates, so more to do in less time now). Related to the same storm, we had flooding in our house, causing damage to some of the floors, which we learned yesterday is not covered by insurance. Then there’s my concerns about my mother’s declining mental health. Also, we’re traveling cross country this week and travel causes me anxiety… I guess I’ll stop there. My point being I see why I have little anxiety monsters hanging around in corners. I’m just trying to do my best to not let them loose to run in a frenzy in my brain.

This morning, almost immediately after waking up my brain started winding itself up. I was feeling more anxiety than I had been for the previous week, making me worry it could transition into a full panic attack or panic cycle. I work tonight & that has been one of my triggers, thanks to previous “right before work” panic attacks.

So I decided to throw a bunch of my anxiety tools at it:

I drank some water.

I made some calming tea (Puka teas have been my new focus lately)

I took a rescue remedy candy

I put white chestnut drops in my tea

I did a 10 min long anxiety meditation on Head Space

Finally, I took one dropper from a bottle of CBD oil

An hour or two later, I feel better. I don’t feel anxiety lurking around the corner right now. The bad part is, I don’t know which thing, or if it’s a combination of all of them, helped. I’d hate to think I need a whole medicine cabinet of holistic remedies to knock anxiety back, but I’m ok if it does. That whole list of things doesn’t make me sleepy, groggy or altered, which is more than I can say for my emergency Xanax. And truth be told, when it happens again, I’ll throw the whole toolbox at it again, because it’s just not worth the risk of having a full panic attack crush down on me. And, hopefully, it will work again. Little victories.

*Pro tip, don’t google “monster creeping around” for an image to go with your post. BAD idea.

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