Anxiety sucks

Anxiety is a bitch! My heart races, I get really nervous, I stutter and feel twitchy. It’s like chugging way too much coffee and having to sit still. It’s horrible, I can’t breathe, my head feels cloudy and confused. I try deep breaths, I try counting, I try to hide for a few minutes to try to focus on the moment, to try to stay grounded. Sometimes I’m successful and can go back to my day, other times it takes a little longer. Sometimes I need to leave where I’m at ASAP and get in my car and get home! I’m safe at home. I used to hear people talk all the time about their anxiety and I always thought they were full of shit! Nope this shits real! It’s a horrible feeling, a loss of control, a loss on my grip on reality.

How scary is it to be fine one second, then BOOM, your world’s caving in around you, feels like forever, even if it’s only a few minutes sometimes. I haven’t figured out what triggers it yet, it’s usually completely random, but I do know I can attempt to control it and not let it completely control me.

I’ve noticed lately my kids keep me centered. When they’re with me I don’t get nervous while driving, I don’t get scared in stores and have to leave with out my stuff. I can focus on them and taking care of them and my crazy thoughts and feelings go away. Maybe that’s why I feel safe at home, they’re here, Danny’s here, my safe place is here. The chaos of our home is safe to me. I walk in the door and all the feelings of the day fade away.

Sounds of Silence

Lemme give you a quick insight inside this head of mine. I was diagnosed a few months ago with Depression, Anxiety and ADHD. I’m also 6 years sober so I’m not big on taking medication, I know, I know, sometimes ya need it. I was just afraid to jump on the pill train again. I tried to tame my crazy thoughts by chugging coffee all day, while it helped the ADHD it obviously pushed the Anxiety into overdrive! I couldn’t even sit or focus on my kids at night. It’s a horrible feeling not being able to hear or understand someone when they’re talking directly to you. I’d shake my head and be thinking how much laundry is in the basement, or what are we even talking about right now. I couldn’t shut off the surround sound going on in my head.

I started seeing a therapist weekly and within a few weeks she suggested medication. I made an appointment with the Doctor who specializes in addiction, in their office and waited a month to see him. By this time I’m self diagnosing myself and I just want an answer to what’s going on in my head! Finally the day arrives and I go to meet my savior. What a fucking joke! I was in his office for maybe 6-7 minutes and all he said to me was what do you want me to do?? I say I just want to know what’s wrong with me? He says I see you’ve been in jail and your an alcoholic, of course I reply yes and I’ve been sober for 6 years, his response was the first time in my sobriety that someone made me feel ashamed of my sobriety. He replied well you’re an addict there’s nothing I can do for you, here’s some Prozac to hold you over til you find someone else. What the actual fuck just happened I thought!!? I left upset and pissed, with no answers, ashamed of my past and embarrassed of my sobriety! I didn’t understand I thought this therapist supposedly dealt with addiction.

I cried and called my sponsor and my husband and vented and was quickly reminded that one persons view of me isn’t who I am! I’m not ashamed of my past or of being an alcoholic, that’s my greatest asset today, I help people on a daily basis by sharing my experiences. The whole experience made me think though if this is how other people in recovery are treated while trying to get mental help, no fucking wonder people relapse! I had no problem while in active addiction getting all kinds of medication from all kinds of doctors, now that I’m being honest and reaching out for help and getting shit on is a little disheartening. I want the noise to stop, I want to hear the silence!

Anyway I continued to see my therapist and called a few more numbers and explained my situation, no one could help! Finally I lost it to my therapist, I just want the noise to stop, I want to be a good mom and be able to be a present mom and I can’t!!! She gave me a number to another guy, and I made an appointment and waited another month to see him. I went with no expectations and no hopes of help at all. I was brutally honest and it was like night and day between the two doctors I saw. This guy spent 1.5 hours talking and asking me questions and diagnosing me, not making me feel like a bag of shit for my past. Trying to help and including me in the process. He’s given me my head back! There’s still a little tweaking to do because of course I don’t follow directions well and decided not to take the anxiety meds, now understanding why I should be taking them. But it’s in the works! The past two months have been like night and day with my home, I can play with my kids and leave the dishes for later, I can read books to them and just sit and be present! I never needed the outside help before but now I understand that it’s ok to get help! I’m a better mother and wife because of it.

I’m hoping by sharing my struggle with finding an appropriate doctor can help someone. It’s scary that there’s people out there that just push us aside because of our past, I get it, but it’s still scares the shit outta me. How many people have gone for help and been turned away and resorted to alcohol to shut the sound off?? How many!?!? Just hang on, there are some good guys out there on our side and willing to help!!

What I Remember

Where do I begin!?? My life changed the day you were born, and again forever, the day you died. Delaney was born on December 7, 2007. She was an easy, fast delivery, never really cried from what I remember, an all around beautiful little soul. I don’t remember things 100%, it’s all a little foggy. I was in the midst of my alcoholism when I was blessed with those few months with her.

I was addicted to pain pills when I found out that I was pregnant with her and went to my first rehab so I could assure she was healthy and safe. I slowly started back to my old ways the minute she was born and I can say I am forever grateful I was semi-conscious those few months with her. I know that probably sounds horrible to some of you but anyone who has dealt with addiction knows the drill. Nothing else matters. I regret a lot from those few months, all the woulda, shoulda, coulda’s. I have learned in my sobriety though not to beat my self up over that stuff and I am grateful today for those few months with her.

April 3, 2008 is the day my life changed forever. It started out like any other day, not that I actually remember, but nothing out of the ordinary happened. I went to dinner and had a few drinks (that means a lot probably) and came home around midnight. Delaney’s crib was in my room, she woke up, I put her in bed with me, we went back to sleep, and when I woke up, she was a horrible grayish-blue color. My mom called 911 (of course I lived with my parents) and the ambulance came and off the ER we went. I don’t even remember if I rode in the ambulance it’s all such a blur. I do remember at the hospital the cops telling me I smelled like alcohol and them taking my blood, and questioning me.

They life flighted her to another hospital and I do remember I couldn’t go in the helicopter because I smelled like alcohol. When I got to the hospital we waited a few hours and finally the doctors told us they had a heart beat but she would be brain dead, and on machines her whole life, her body was failing. I made a decision that day to end my daughters life. I was able to hold her and bathe her one last time while she died in my arms. I held her and sang to her for hours. I remember her getting heavy and my dad taking her from me telling me it was time to say goodbye. I Remember I lost it that day, in every sense of the word, I lost it. I left that hospital with out my daughter and gained an excuse.

The next few weeks were a blur, I was so high at her funeral, it was absolutely disgusting and disrespectful. I think God kept a lot of that pain from me, as fucked up as it is, I was high, I didn’t have to deal with the pain like everyone else in my family did. It was 4 years before I’d deal with the loss of her. I bottled it up, and drank and used anything and everything I could to not feel. I was numb 100% of the time.

Those are my memories of my daughter, not the smiles and giggles and little firsts, her death is what I think of mostly. Delaney died from SIDS on April 3, 2008 and I will never be the same because of it.

Now is any of this the reason I’m an alcoholic or wound up in a few rehabs or jails?? Absolutely not!!! Is it a contributing factor? Possibly!? I don’t know, nor do I care, it’s just part of my story. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and everything I’ve ever gone through is what’s made me who I am today. I really have no Idea why I’m sharing all this. I do know though, now at 6 years sober, I’ve come to terms with her death. Of course I miss her and some days are harder than others. I have since made amends at her grave for being a bag of shit while she was alive. I also get to make living amends daily by being the best sober mom I can to her three brothers. I know my lil girl is proud of her mom and is always watching over me!

Just like his mama

Ohhhhhhh myyyyyy lord where do they come from!? How can someone so freaking small be so full of energy and rage at all times!? Am I the only one who thinks their kid pretty much hates them!? I seriously question my abilities as a mother on a daily basis with this one. It blows my mind too because he’s the one I stayed home from work with and was a stay at home mom, the other two I was back to work in like three weeks!

Anyways here’s a little glimpse into my world. My 4 year old is the absolute most amazing little thing ever, he’s smart, too smart for his own good, he’s got beautiful red hair, and big brown eyes …just like his mama. He’s like a little old man trapped in a toddler body, an old soul. He makes the funniest faces, has an amazing personality and tells silly jokes. He loves to cook and is very independent. He goes to pre school 5 days a week and has a bunch of little friends. He’s extremely outgoing and loves to play hide and seek.

I know I say He’s my difficult one, but I also know it’s because we’re so much alike. He’s stubborn, bullheaded and used to getting his way, also just like his mama. He’s not so good with listening, following rules, wants what he wants when he wants it……also just like his mama. I know it’s me and take full responsibility for the melt downs and “mean” moments because he’s just like me! He’s me, trapped in my beautiful, redheaded, little man.

One Small Step

Who woulda thought I’d ever have time to do something like this, but as I lay in bed next to my sleeping 4 year old (yes he still sleeps with us) I wonder, how can I make the time? How can I possibly squeeze a few more minutes? Will I be good at this? Will anyone even get to read what I have to say? All those what ifs when starting out. I have no pre-set topics, or opinions, or goals, I just want to vent and write and get the craziness outta my head. And maybe, just maybe in the process help a few people like me, sober, crazy, moms.

My name’s Melissa, I’m 39 and live in Cleveland with my husband and three boys. I work full time at a restaurant which is obviously a love/hate relationship all of its own. I have been sober a little over 6 years now and I can say that was the best decision I’ve ever made. I wouldn’t have the life I have today if it wasn’t for my sobriety. That story is for another day though. I’m honestly just trying to be a better person and mother than I was yesterday. Some days are better than others obviously! Between my kids and meetings and work I don’t have a lot of time. I don’t have any hobbies or interests and I don’t know if that’s a good or bad thing. Maybe this will turn into something more than just venting but for now that’s the plan!

So here it goes! Bear with me, I’m not a writer at all, but I’m goign to vent and spill my guts for all the world to see, hopefully get some good advice/feedback on life and kids, and all that comes with it. Hopefully I can meet some cool people on this journey and learn a little more about myself.