It’s not a heart attack, it’s anxiety

I woke up Sunday and felt the familiar palpitations. Despite being diagnosed with superventricular tachycardia 5+ years ago, I knew it wasn’t that. Or, maybe it was, but it wasn’t caused by my heart. I was feeling the shortness of breath that comes with anxiety. When I stood and walked around, I felt light headed. I was rushing, again, trying to get together a trifle dessert for my family’s Easter gathering. I had failed to turn on the correct oven, and an hour before we were supposed to leave, the angel food cake was only beginning to bake. I was stressed.

The day before wasn’t much better. I had failed to fully prepare for a widows event, meaning that an hour before I was to leave, I was still in the Kmart check-out line trying to return some growlers to hold the coffee and hot chocolate I still hoped to make for that evening. I thought they were only $27, but they were $45, and well, I wasn’t about to drop that kind of dough on some growlers!

Anyways, that’s besides the point. I was stressed. I am stressed.

Enter day 3 of anxiety and…depression.

I know how this goes. I hung out with my sister last week who was glad to hear I was still on anti-depressant meds. I told her I had finally admitted to myself that my depression may not just be situational; this may be a long term “thing”. That’s a tough thing to admit. That your brain isn’t properly balanced chemically and you need meds to help you get through the day.

I’m a bit better today. I don’t have that catch of breath this morning that comes with my heart going nuts with anxiety. My head feels more clear after another good night of sleep. My sewing project finally worked out and I was finally able to finish something.

Depression usually comes through me as anxiety and stress. Yes, there’s plenty of that. But this time it’s come through as some serious self-confidence issues. Although I’ve never been the most self-confident person (I fake it really well) I’ve never loathed myself or my abilities. This is a new thing, and something I despise. This doesn’t help with the self loathing.

I’m running 2 companies by myself. It’s not easy. I knew it wouldn’t be. I didn’t realize how running 2 companies who don’t work in conjunction with another would kill my confidence. I’ve excelled at sales for many years, so to be a part of another company’s startup, while having my own startup, well, it’s rough. The sales are going to take a while. If you’ve ever been in sales, you’ll know that sales feed off of sales. It’s like a high. You get one and you want more and more and more. It’s constant motivation. But the opposite is true. When you aren’t selling you begin to question everything. And when you own the 2 companies involved with the sales, it becomes very personal.

I feel like a failure.

Why aren’t more people signing up for the widow trips?

Why aren’t people placing big orders of these biodegradable and compostable products?

Why aren’t more people buying my book?

Why aren’t, why aren’t, why aren’t. It all becomes about me. Why aren’t they working with ME?

It makes me feel stupid. Inadequate. Washed up. Unmotivated. Angry. Bitter. Resentful. It makes me wonder why I’m even here.

I’m not suicidal, don’t worry. I just kind of want to be in the space of ‘nothing’ for a while. Where I don’t have to answer to anyone, most of which is myself.

Part of me hopes these heart palpitations are my heart. Somehow, it seems that they’ve come so far with heart-stuff that something could be done about it. But the anxiety and depression? Boy, we have a long way to go with that. I’m not in therapy anymore so of course I’m wondering if I should be. But where are all my coping skills I learned in my years of seeing a counselor?

And I flash to what I tell everyone who attends my mindful healing classes. Deep breaths. Go to your safe and happy places. Take a moment. Be in the quiet.

I thought I did that yesterday, and then I came back and realized, no, I was working! I was leading the walk to teach others about these techniques. That’s not relaxing. I need my own time to find that quiet and be in my happy space.

I promise myself that I’ll take that time this week. I’m no good to anyone or any career if I can’t ground myself and relieve this anxiety and depression.

Breathe. Be in the moment. Go to your happy space.

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Comments 2

  1. “I just kind of want to be in the space of ‘nothing’ for a while. Where I don’t have to answer to anyone, most of which is myself.” Yes! I relate to everything in this post so much. Well, except the sales part 🙂 I hope you get some peace of mind soon. You’re doing amazing and much needed work, and you continue to inspire and motivate me.

  2. Thank you Kelly. I love watching your moments of peace being outside and with your family. I hope to find more of that.

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