Hello to all of you, i hope you are well!
Whats been happening lately? Well its been a couple of weeks since I wrote and I had a lovely spell of anxiety for a while.
I think I know what caused it. I had mentioned before that my boyfriend and I have been house hunting, but we have discovered that its probably not the ideal time to selling his house and buying another, what with the credit crunch and all that. I was very disappointed as i finally felt ready to move out of the family home and get on with my future. It seems like madness that Gerry has a gorgeous flat sitting there, instead of trying to buy somewhere together, I should just live there! If only life was that simple.
I have said before that Gerry lives in a completely different town. It is beyond my comfort zone and I feel i would be stuck in this new town with nothing much to do. Since i still don't have my driving licence, i couldn't drive to and from my parents house in another town on my own. Gerry does love in an area that has better shops, parks, and pubs etc. But i still think i would feel nervous walking around this new territory on my own. Of course I would be with Gerry a lot but what about when I'm alone. Ok writing this now i realise i sound very very negative. But i think when I realised we couldn't simply buy a house in my town and have a lovely Christmas in our new home, i was very disappointed. But on top of that I started to feel nervous again. I realised that the pressure was back on! Now i need to try constantly to improve my driving and get myself over to Gerry's house as soon as possible. He isn't going to wait forever!
So yes it affected me in the form of anxiety and also a few panic attacks. I was in bed one night when i suddenly started to focus on my breathing. Why do we do this to ourselves? As soon as you start to focus on your breathing too much it goes weird. Before i knew it I was obsessing over the fact I couldn't get a full breath. This is probably because i was so uptight and tense but it made me panic. Luckily I talked myself down before the panic was out of control, but even a little attack like that can set you back a bit.
I would say I was prob anxious for a week after that. Thinking about my breathing more and more but reminding myself that I have the ability to fix my breathing should the panic happen again. I really had to force myself to continue my routine at this point. I still went to the gym everyday but i didn't really feel the same sense of satisfaction from things. It bothered me that although I was keeping busy the anxiety was still there. I hoped it would pass eventually and thank goodness it did. It always does! But sometimes it does take a little bit longer and I think we need to just tell ourselves to be patient! However, its not nice and i empathise with anyone who deals with this. I actually questioned if i possibly even had depression as I just felt so 'flat'. Anyway, like i said, it passed after about a week and things seemed a bit more positive again.
I had a nice Halloween with my nephews, only one didn't dress up as he thinks he is told old now that he is 11. I think hes at an age where he doesn't want to do anything that will make him look silly. But never one to take myself too seriously, i got dressed up for the night. Not a very original costume i must admit but i dressed up as my dad. My dad rides a motorbike and sings in a band so i was dressed in leathers, rock tshirt, his jeans, helmet, shades, gloves and even a goatee beard. The kids loved it and at the end of the day that's why i done it. My dad went to a party dressed as Gene Simmons from KISS and i done his face paint as you can see in the photo. I think it turned out well.
So after Halloween was another week of me trying to keep up with my routine, I went to the gym everyday and attended a body attack class with a friend at night. Gerald then told me i need to rebook my driving lessons to start driving back to his house again. I can admit that my driving lessons were a HUGE part of my improvement at the start of the year, but the thought still filled me with a little dread. I did was I was told thought and booked a lesson for Monday.
So yesterday was the day of my lesson and I was very nervous. However, I reminded myself that I was ALWAYS nervous before lessons but usually felt fine once we got going. As soon as I got in the car I made a big speech about how I was nervous and that I wanted it to be treated as my first ever lesson since I hadn't been out with my instructor for months. I even suggested that maybe we should just stick to my little village, just this once, so i could get back into the swing of things. Yeh i drive most days on my own (with another qualified driver) but its different when you are driving with an instructor who is telling you where to go etc.
We set off and obviously he didn't listen to a word I had said. Suddenly we were miles from my home and I was thrown into the deep end with parallel parking, 3 point turns, reversing round corners and so on. I was proud that I was in the other town, but i did get nervous. When I was at the furthest away point we were parked in a street while my instructor told me different rules of the road. At that point i panicked a bit. I visualised the journey back home and it seemed endless. I wanted to put my foot on the gas and speed home as fast as the car would take me. But i couldn't do that. Not with my instructor going on about speed limits. I thought of telling him the lesson was over and telling him to drive me home but obviously i didn't. I sat and listened and done what I was told. Turned left when i was told. Stopped the car when i was told. Every time I thought we were about to start heading home he would have me driving in the opposite direction. I always liked this about him. He doesn't take any crap from me. He wont listen to my excuses and pushes me to go further. At one point i realised i was outside Gerry's parents house. That made me happy as they have been inviting me over for ages and i just haven't faced it. At that point I was calm and realised I should really arrange to visit soon. Eventually i got home in one piece.
The lesson was a success and Gerry was delighted to find out where i was. In the end I was minutes from his house, but i can admit it did scare me. That rush of OH MY GOD LOOK WHERE I AM I NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE AND I AM MILES FROM HOME WHAT THE FICK AM I GOING TO DO!!!!!!!!! That's not fun! No matter how short lived it is.
Gerry being happy with my progress started making arrangements. 'Well now that you have done that we can go to the supermarket tomorrow', 'We will go to the cinema on Wednesday Night, 'We can visit my parents at the weekend'. Wonderful huh. I agreed to all of this and told myself that i DO need to start doing this stuff more often anyway. Yeh i will prob be pretty uncomfortable as I drive to his parents house but i need to put myself in these situations. It will be worth it and I know i can do it if i focus. The cinema has never thrilled me to be honest. Not for agoraphobic reasons but i just don't enjoy sitting in an uncomfortable chair for almost 2 hours , in the dark, and not being able to talk. I agreed though.
So today I had a few errands to run. My car was in for its MOT and i needed to go pick it up, which i did. And then Gerry started talking about going to the supermarket. There is a supermarket right where I was picking up my car but Gerry wanted to go to one further away as he insists its much better. It probably is better to be honest but today i just didn't wanna do it. Last night i didn't get the best sleep and i think the driving lesson overwhelmed me a bit so today i felt like just taking things easy. Id get my car, go to the shops next to the garage, go home and have a relaxing dinner. Oh no... that's not enough for Gerry. He wasn't happy with me at all. I basically refused to go to the supermarket and told him I didn't feel up to it. I did feel a bit nervous and although i didn't mind driving to the supermarket, i didn't really fancy walking about inside while he done his shopping. On top of that the schools were just coming out and the roads were really busy, so i really just didn't want to go. Should I still have tried? Yeh i probably should have. but sometimes you just KNOW when its not a good idea, when its inevitable that you will panic for whatever reason. And i just didnt feel mentally strong enough to tackle it. I explained that I am doing good! I went on my lesson and will continue to go weekly, we are going to the cinema and going to his parents this weekend. Could he cut me some slack please?
No he couldn't it seems. He left in a mood and I have since had a text saying I need to sort myself out as he is sick and tired of doing things on his own. He made such a big deal about the supermarket though. And i think when someone builds it up so much like that it seems much harder! Anyway I'm home. Hes gone. We will be fine. This is just the sort of thing couple need to deal with when one of them is agoraphobic, isn't it.
Oh well, onwards and upwards. I am happy to have my car back and look forward of getting back to the gym. Now i just need to prepare myself for the other trips i will be making.
Oh i almost forgot, the magazine article. I don't think it will be going ahead. Basically they say they NEED a photograph of myself and Gerry. Gerry wont allow it. I think that's perfectly understandable. He is a very private person (poor boy must HATE my blog) but he doesn't like his life being broadcast. Yes he is on my blog but since no one here knows about it, it doesn't seem so bad. Its a whole different ballgame having your photo in a national magazine. He will not change his mind on this and i don't see why he should have to. The story is about me so they shouldn't be so desperate for a picture of Gerry and if they don't want to go ahead without his photo then that's fine with me :)
And the Time travellers wife was a fantastic book. Enjoyed it lots, but the movie sucked. Isnt that always the case?