15 Nov The Illness we don’t discuss
The illness we don’t discuss
What comes into your mind when you hear those words?
I suspect we may be split into two groups here, those who have experience these conditions either themselves or through a friend.
In this case you will have empathy and understanding.
Then there will be those who have never experienced the darkness or debilitating harshness of either. Thus so, have no way of knowing the hell it can bring. no one is right or wrong here it would be boring if everyone thought the same no?
So I am going to tell you my story in the hope that people will stop being so scared of discussing depression and anxiety.
I have suffered with some sort of depression for many many years starting back in my teens, through bullying I became low and depressed.
Only after having my first daughter at 19 I realized I needed some professional help.
Off to the GP new baby in tow, to be told I had the baby blues and given pills, I would hope that today that isn’t still the case but I am doubtful.
So there is the start of my “happy pills” journey. I would take them, come off them, take them again this went on for years.
Now I want to bring you to last September/October time between then and January this year. I had a string of things happen which caused a ripple effect, it was almost like it got me before I had a chance to grab it. Like Damn I am in trouble here.
I felt like I was going mad, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat and my mood was so so low. I had never felt like this I just wanted to sleep and not wake up for a while.
Then the back end of the year I had my first panic attack if you have ever experience this you will know.
I was in a supermarket just ending a call to a friend and the next thing I know I was on the floor in the canned goods aisle. (not even the nice face cream aisle).
I couldn’t breathe, it was like someone was standing on my chest my whole body shook, I heard someone ask me if I was epileptic.
That must be it, I had suffered epilepsy when I was in my 20’s I was given water and sat in the back for a while.
Once calmed down I felt OK a little unsteady but ok I even drove myself home that day.
I didn’t mention it to anyone then they started happening more and more. My husband and kids were witnessing them, this is the point I knew I had to do something about it.
I had that nervous feeling, you know the type you get when you have an interview or a big meeting.
But scared or not, I had to get this sorted I went to the doctors half expecting her to say it’s the HRT or forced menopause .(coming soon to a blog near you)
But she didn’t infact she was amazing and said that it was good I came now as if I had left it I would of suffered a nervous breakdown.
I was suffering with GAD general anxiety disorder with Panic attacks. She described it in a pretty cool way, she said that its like having a cup, over the last 6 months I had let people fill it up little by little, it will overflow and that’s what I had done I had overflown.
The worst panic attack I had was just after that visit it was so horrific I am not sure my words will be able to express it I can’t write that well but I will try.
Its 1pm on a Wednesday afternoon, Mr A has gone out somewhere, kids are still at school so just me and Harley Dog at home.
Suddenly my heart starts beating a little faster, the more it does the more anxious I become, it starts to race like its going to jump out of my chest.
I start to sweat and I can feel my whole body trembling I cant breathe, someone is choking me (they are not as I am alone) I feel dizzy and sick and just want it to end. I feel like I am dying and if I am take me now as I am so scared, falling to the floor my Labrador sits next to me and has his head by mine his eyes locked on mine tears are falling down my cheeks, my heart starts to slow down and I regain composure.
The new meds haven’t kicked in yet so I knew it was a chance that it wouldn’t immediate but now I don’t want to even leave the house, what if this happens at the local shops and people see me? What will they think? See there is that need to please people again. Luckily for me I have some amazing best friends who kick my arse when needed and drag me out when I am too fragile to be kicked.
If you have someone in your life suffering with panic attacks or you think someone may be having please remember these things
- Stay with the person and keep calm
- Try to move the person to a quiet place
- Speak to the person in short simple sentences (they may only be able to nod)
- Help slow the persons breathing by breathing with them or by counting slowly to 10
As a friend never give up on a friend who has depression or anxiety I know it can be tough and you don’t want to be a pain or maybe you don’t even understand so ask…. Turn up, take them for coffee, ask them to events yes they may well say no but don’t stop asking and please don’t tell them to “get over it” or “snap out of it” as if it was that easy non of us would suffer
Till next time, be nice to each other
Jules Out xx