Tuesday, 29 April 2008


My therapist has contacted me. My appointment is this Thursday at 12pm. Fingers crossed people. He gave Lindsay a new lease of life... maybe it will do the same for me. Here's hoping.

My Monica

This blog has provided me with some wonderful new friends who i consider very very important to me. One of these friends is Monica. Monica and i talk everyday and i love her to pieces. With her huge passion for Scotland we had much in common and this has developed into a fantastic relationship which i treasure.

Monica is from America but is planning a trip to Scotland very soon. She found my site as she has anxiety issues of her own and has decided to write a blog of her own. For anyone looking to hear about anxiety from another angle here is her link.... its a work in progress..

Sunday, 27 April 2008

Post Panic Attack

Ok... i just had an attack. Literally minutes ago. And it is the first time i have had an attack in a long time actually. What brought it on? .... i did!

Ill tell you a little about my week.

I had another fight with my mum. After our arguement the previous week i thought i had been doing quite well. I had been getting into a routine. Getting myself up and dressed before midday and going to bed earlier at night. This might not sound like much but honestly this can be an achievement some days. I was also trying to spend more time outside of my room. Eat dinner with the family etc. So it was small changes but still, it was something.

On Monday i had Luke and my mum was out. I really enjoyed our day together. We played together, went a small walk and then settled infront of the t.v to watch 'Alvin and The Chipmonks' together.

My mum appeared later as she had been out all day and she was annoyed saying i should have done more. The house wasn't tidy enough etc. So it turned into World War II. I make my mum sound so bad in these posts but believe me she's great. I think she obviously has a lot on her plate right now and since we are always around each other... we take it out on each other.

Anyway the argument stayed with me. The atmosphere in the house was awful and on Thursday i told her i needed us to talk about things. I felt like if i didn't get things off my chest my head was going to explode or i was going to breakdown or something!!!

So we talked. And it helped me a lot. I told her i have been feeling down, that i'm scared. I'm scared of never getting better. I'm scared of not being motivated enough. I'm scared of Panic attacks everyday...and on and on. I cried again... twice in one week is a record for me but the talk helped me.

On Friday Alison came over (the nurse i know who will be doing EMDR). We spent a good few hours chatting and again i think talking helps. I guess it felt like counselling in a way. I was exhausted when it ended but feeling a little more positive.

I've been trying to spend a little time outdoors each day. I'm doing this to get into the habit. For too long my days have been filled with being at home, in my room so im hoping to get out of that rut. So each day i have spent a little time in the garden. On Saturday i went a little walk with my mum and Luke and once i got home i got my bike out and headed off in the other direction. I got to where i had planned which wasn't far but i did get a little anxious, however i made it so that was good.

Then today. I woke up to beautiful weather. I went outside and sat in the sun and felt totally relaxed. For once i wasn't thinking about going back indoors but just enjoying being where i was. Luke was here and his friend Lee arrived so i was keeping them entertained. Lee invited Luke into his garden which is at the bottom of the street so i took Luke there. Then i played with the kids and even had a go on the trampoline ha ha. The boys wanted to go into Lees room and play the X Box so i took Luke up there. These details may seem small to other people but for me this was all great progress. Sometimes i worry that i will be anxious in other peoples homes as the surroundings are unfamiliar. Or if i go upstairs i will get panicky and have to run out. But i took Luke upstairs no problem and spent time chatting with Lee's mum in the garden. I left Luke to play and walked to get my mum who was in her friends house. When i was there i seen a crowd of guys further along. Knowing one of them i walked over to chat. I stood there chatting away and again i felt totally at ease.... normal. The day ended at dinner. My mum, Luke and i all ate in the garden and i can honestly say the whole day was spent anxiety free.

So i had spent the whole day outdoors. I enjoyed it. I loved it. I wasn't far from home but it boosted my confidence again. It made me WANT to try more. It gave me my motivation back i suppose.

This is the hard part to explain. Tonight i sat in my room and felt thrilled about the days progress but at the same time i felt strange. I was thinking that i should feel anxious as my daily routine had been changed. Instead of being in my room all day i had been out and maybe i wouldnt be able to relax in my room as easily.

My hands were sweating and i was thinking very negatively. I tried to change my way of thinking and then tried distraction by doing a crossword but it was no use. I knew i was keeping this anxiety going and i KNEW i would cause an attack. And then it happened. For the first time in so long i panicked. My heart was pounding heard and i was visulising myself freaking out, losing control. I was imagining calling an ambulance or screaming for my parents to help me. Thinking that this panic attack would be the one that wouldnt stop but would go on and on and on.
Then i stopped myself and i remembered. Panic attacks a fueled by our fears. STOP fearing this. STOP thinking the worst. CALM DOWN. I took a deep breath and i told myself not to run from this but closed my eyes and tried to focus on my body and what was going on. Then i slowly started to tap using EFT. Within one minute my panic was gone! I was a little shaken but now i am feeling fine. I called my boyfriend and he was scared that this attack will have set me back but in a way it has done the opposite. I feel confident again. Reminded that I AM IN CONTROL. That although these attacks are horrendous...they pass. I could panic again tonight. I am still a little uptight. But i know i'll be ok. If that is my sacrifice for doing more today, then i can totally handle that... it was worth it.
It's been a good day.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

More Positive Steps...

This week started badly.

I have always been the first person to talk about my parents supporting me. They are so patient with me and try to understand what i am going through but this week things went a little pear shaped.

On Monday i asked my mum to wake me as i wanted to attempt the walk to the shops again. She woke me at around 10am on her way out but said we could make the walk together when she got home. So me being me, i went back to sleep. I woke up with my mum marching into my room asking why i wasn't up yet. No one likes to be woken up with a jump and i am no exception. However she continued to shout her orders and questions... 'Why aren't you awake'?, 'Get Dressed', 'Hurry up i have thing's to do' and finally 'Move it WE ARE GOING'!!!!

Well... this is not the best approach with me ha. I point blank refused! Firstly, i woke up with such a fright that i was shaking, but i also knew that it would be bad to tackle the task now. She got me so worked up and uneasy that i knew the chances of me having a panic attack had just doubled, and if i had panicked outside, well that wouldn't do me any good at all. I need to be calm and focused when trying these things. I need a clear head to be able to face the panic and talk myself through it, but i honestly think if i had gone then i would have freaked myself out. So my mum left without me and an atmosphere filled the house.

I went back to my room and basically avoided her for the next day. I felt more anxious than i had been for a while but knew it was down to the arguement. I figured it would be ok the following day as my mum and i have such a great relationship and neither of us hold grudges.

Next day came... and my mum came back into my room with a few harsh words. She told me she had just been to the doctor to tell them that she isn't coping with my situation. She told me i was being lazy, selfish, obsessive. She brought up my diet and said she thinks it's becoming a problem as i am half the size i was before (an exaggeration believe me). She said i do nothing in the house, i look ill and this has gone on long enough 'you've been in this room for 6 years'. Then my mum went on to discuss how thing's are going to be changing. My dad suggested that all visitors are banned from the house, this would then force me to go see them instead. And since my sleep pattern is so messy, all electricity in my room will be switched off at midnight!!! Well as you can imagine, i didn't take this too well ha ha

I never cry. I don't know if i'm numb. Or if i bottle things up. But i cried. A lot.

I told her that i am not lazy. I explained that each day is a battle! I talk myself through the day hoping not to panic. I may have been spending more time in my room than usual but thats because i have been reading my books and making plans on how to attacks this. Doing my research i suppose. And if my mum thinks im just sitting in me room ignoring the outside world then she is very wrong. And as for the suggestion that i don't have visitors or electricity, well those idea's are just ridiculous (and she agreed Thank goodness). I haven't been in my room for 6 years at all, and i think that was the comment that bothered me the most. I had to ask her to leave after that.

Having the arguement and crying actually made me feel better. I know it's probably because i released a lot of emotion that is usually hidden away. We spent another few hours avoiding each other and then things returned to normal. I wasn't angry with my mum because i know she is just worried. She cares and seeing her daughter like this hurts her. Of course i feel guilty for this, but i know it's not my fault. Not really. If i could control this, well i wouldn't be sitting here writing this blog.

So time to take action. I got back on the phone to the doctor and made sure i have been referred to the community psychiatric nurse again. I have. I called my friend Alison who is a nurse and will be doing EMDR with me, and i arranged to go out walking with her on her day off each week.
I am trying to tackle the sleep problem. I am a complete night owl but am starting to get into a better routine. This will probably take a while as my routine has been back to front for way too long.

I could say my mum gave me the kick up the ass i needed but to be honest that isn't true. Mentally i have been dealing with these things and making plans for a while now. Chris is taking a week off work in May and we are going driving each day... and yes i dread it and i am so scared but i will do it all the same. I know i NEED to.

Then last night my friend Lindsay was hypnotised. She was seeing the man who i had used previously. But for one reason or another my appointments with him just kind of stopped. Anyway after her session Lindsay went out. She felt calm. She was shocked by the results as to be honest she hadn't expected it to work. I was so happy for her and sooo proud of her but then today she just shocked me even more. For the first time in a LONG time Lindsay went out with her mum to visit her Aunt who lives in another town. She was there for hours and all she experienced was a small panic on her way but since then had been fine. I have actually just text her to find out where she is now haha... she could be anywhere!!

Anyway after speaking to Lindsay and catching her excitement i decided to chance my luck a bit. I still had the email address for the man who done the hypnosis but he also does NLP, TFT, EFT (all these abbreviations lol). So i emailed him and asked if he knew anyone who done the same things as him... but on a budget. Last time i seen him it cost me a small fortune. Straight away i got a reply and he told me that HE will help me for FREE. All that he asks is that i totally go for it and make a huge effort. Well i can do that. My first appointment will be the first week in May.

Everyday i have been up earlier and got myself dressed. I have either been cleaning the house, out with the kids or weeding in the garden. I guess i am on the right track. The fear is there. But i knew it would be hard. I am ready to give it my all though. Hopefully with NLP, TFT, EFT, EMDR or Hypnosis... something will make a difference haha. But i think the most important thing is facing it. Like the saying goes, 'Feel the fear and do it anyway'

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Letter from a Friend

Quick update. I am doing quite well at the moment. I look forward to each day and what it brings. Ive been spending a lot of time with friends, Luke and with Chris who is still making me very happy. I havent been out as much as i would like but ive still been making the effort, even if it is just spending a day in the garden. The weather has been improving and so has my determination. I will hopefully have more to report soon.

I have made a few very special friends through writing in the blog. I asked one of them to write me a letter describing her feelings day to day and decided to put it on here as its very well written and i am sure people will be able to understand exactly what she is describing. I would love any comments on this.....

As I sit here contemplating all the thoughts that are cluttering my mind I am overwhelmed. It seems there is no end to the incessant worry and feelings of inadequace and helplessness. The cobwebs are building in the recesses of my emptiness with such speed that I can not seem to clear them away. Even as I sit and write, I feel like I am smothering.. sinking everdeeper into the mirky bog..

There used to be such order here.. now I am surrounded by dusty memories and piles of cluttered anxiety. Looking across the mounds of rubbish I can see the list of problems perched on the desk in the corner. I once had plans to deal with those.. to take them on one by one until I had completely rid myself of them.. now I feel weak and useless.. I can see the list, but I can't reach it..not in my mind.. not with the lack of energy that saps me more and more every day. I pray for release. I begf or understanding, but I know that all the past years of longing for knowledge, of pleading with God to help me.. that it certainly must not be meant for me to conquer the list right now.. maybe perhaps never.

Leaving my mind and wandering aimlessly through my everyday life I see constant obstacles. I sit and cry, though no one knows it.. no one can ever see.. for that makes me look weak, and I simply cannot have that. I cry alone.. sometimes in the closet pretending to clean.. sometimes outside when I am journaling..and as I cry the anxiety builds and builds until it errupts with such a ferocity it takes my breath away.

I don't long for death, but oftentimes I welcome it..It would be lovely to float carefree through the clouds in the perfectness of the afterlife watching those I love from afar, and not having the stressbuild. No more panic.. no more pain.. no more fear.. Fear consumes my days and nights evershadowing my life like a gossamer gauze that fills my head with haze and uncertainty. There are times when I feel the breath of life blow across me, and I smile. There are times when the anxiety isn't so bad, and I get a tiny taste of what a normal life would be like. It's as if the Fates are teasing me.. like they enjoy toying with my life..turning me loose from my own private prison only to see me filled with joy for brief moments then snatching me with such callous and placing me back inthe horrid existence which is my true life. Reality stings like the bitter weeds that bloom inspring.. I struggle to keep my head clear, but the weeds twist and twine around and through my being smothering me. With the struggle comes weakness.. the vines use my joy to nourish themselves completely sapping me of both strength and happiness.

Even with my grandchild they have managed to take some of those joys and replace them with fear.. What if I hold her and I fall.. what if she needs me and I can't be there..what if I die and leave her.. it's too much for my mind to even try to comprehend. I see death as total aloneness.. I am so afraid of the unknown that there is no reasoning even in my mind. Every year older I become, is another year closer I am to the inevitable.. I have spent most of my life surrounded by people and yet totally alone. I yearn for the gentle touch of someone who truly cares. I want desperately to know that I am of worth to someone, and not just a convenience or a monetary provider. I feel no love, no compassion, no trust, no honesty.. Being completely numb would be a welcome thing if it were to take away the loneliness that floods my sould like raging torrents from an angry sea, threatening to suck me under into it's dark murkywaters and finally realease me from the hell that is my life. This is some of how I feel right now.. though I have yet to really even scratch the surface, but to dig too deeply would certainly induce panic and depression taking it to a higher level.. which I simply cannotstand right now.. I simply can not do it.. for now I close my journal.. and again shut away the painful memories and feelings.. til another day when I feelstrong enough to face them yet once again. Until then...

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Decisions, Decisions

This is me many moons ago! I think i must be about 17 in that first picture. I was asked if i wanted to do modelling and said yes like any young girl would. I had a few photoshoots and done a few jobs but decided it wasnt for me. It's not that i didn't enjoy it, it was great! But i was realistic and knew it wasn't going to be a full time career unless i was hungry for it and basically i wasn't. I got a full time job in the real world and the rest is history.

The reason u am showing you these 2 pictures are because they were both taken by a man named Joe. Joe is a great guy and from what i remember we hit it off all those years ago. In a weird twist of fate Joe and i have regained contact 10 years later. Joe is still a successful photographer in Glasgow and after chatting said he wants to shoot my pictures again to show me 10 years later. He thinks this is an interesting idea as he has never done this before and theres all sorts of talk about the new pictures and making them 'edgy' lol

But Joe doesn't know me. Joe doesn't know anything about my life since then. Joe doesn't know i have agoraphobia.

He just called me and we must have chatted easily for half an hour. We definately get on really well, but i still didn't tell him the truth. I think it's because i want to do the shoot. I don't want to rule it out. Maybe i will do it when i am better. Maybe the fact i am agoraphobia will make me an even MORE interesting subject for him haha, who knows?

It's a dilemma all the same. Not a huge one though. I will tell Joe the truth. If he could photograph me at home in my natural habitat that would be fantastic haha, but im not sure if thats possible as it was always in studios in the past with a LOT of equipment. Anyway like i said in the title...decisions, decisions... i will keep you posted.