Monday, February 21, 2011

Pushing The Re-Start Button

That's what I tried to do today.  Because today is Sunday, and Sunday (rolling into Monday) is always my "do-over" day, my day to put a fresh new coat of paint on life. It has everything to do with Sunday being the Sabbath, which for us is a really different day of the week. Yes, partly because we go to church, but it's more than that. The whole day becomes kind of insulated at our house as we forego shopping, running errands, screens (with the exception of things Brandon and I deem "worthwhile"--not much), homework (as much as possible), housework (as much as possible)--you get the idea. Sunday is our family day to just decompress and enjoy each other's company, to be more prayerful and introspective, to take stock and prepare mentally/spiritually/emotionally for a new week. Sure, the kids aren't as drawn to this as we are and need training in decompression/introspection, but we think it's worth the effort and paying off.  I wish more people would observe the Sabbath like they used to. I am a firm believer that some of the things God has asked of us that seem superfluous/don't really make sense often have hidden benefits we might not suspect at first glance. Like keeping the Sabbath day holy (one of the "Top 10") by refraining from "work" and focusing on your spirit instead.  It's a good thing! (Bonus: you don't need to be Christian or even religious to enjoy the benefits of a decompression/introspection day.)

I continue to have crazy weird physical symptoms when I go out in public, but it seems to be getting better/easier every time, so I force myself to go out every day. In church I felt short of breath, tingly, and flushed the whole time--and not in a good way. It's just weird, weird, weird! I only used xanax twice because I'm not fond of taking stuff unless absolutely necessary, and taking a pill to leave my house is totally unacceptable in my mind! (I recognize this is not true for some people and they now have my full sympathies, but since this is a new and utterly foreign experience for me and I'm hoping to "nip it in the bud" soon, I'm not willing to accept a life of regular panic attacks and drugs.)

If we rule out all physical causes (and I'm getting that esophageal echo done tomorrow, not last Friday as planned, as well as some blood work to test a few last things), I'd like to talk to a professional about panic attacks. I've read a lot about them and am still confused, but it seems entirely possible that these symptoms I've been having since the initial attack could simply be because of the severity of what happened (kind of like post traumatic stress syndrome) and will go away once enough time has passed and I know for sure what the heck is going on, as opposed to feeling freaked out by the unknown! But if there is no conclusive physical diagnosis, I will be left wondering if the doctors are just missing something, or if in fact it was just a random panic attack brought on by NOTHING! (Interestingly, 90% of panic attacks end up in the ER with symptoms of heart attack. The symptoms are identical!)

From what I understand, panic attacks are different from anxiety attacks in that anxiety attacks are brought on by stress and worry, while panic attacks come out of nowhere. But according to a friend (and I can hardly believe how many people in my circle of friends and family have had experiences with panic and anxiety) an anxiety attack can escalate into a full blown panic attack if left untreated.

Ooooooooh, I'm so tired of thinking about it already, and I'm SO not interested in my blog turning into a daily mental health report . . . I've still got my sense of humor so I can't be that crazy, right?

Today (I started this post yesterday) is President's Day, but Brandon is at work so I'm taking the kids to a movie and to get a goldfish. (I know, somebody reading this went to the Carribbean this weekend and I'm going to PetSmart . . .) I'm guessing I'll be pushing down the panic again, but hopefully it will be better than yesterday, just as yesterday was better than the day before. The biggest problem is I'm always EXHAUSTED once I get home.

Daily highlights: holding hands and talking with Kate while lying in my bed yesterday after she kindly did the whites for me and cleaned up Rachael's pee pee mess, Will begging me for a pet rat and making me scratch and tickle his back the entire first hour of church (he's very particular, it has to be with one finger or a pen), Elizabeth using some old scarves and bandanas to create tons of "outfits" and asking me which one she should wear to school, Rachael saying I'm a nest and she's a little birdie and then snuggling into my lap, and Brandon being Superman as usual, making pancakes, eggs and bacon for breakfast yesterday, doing an emergency transplant of one of his bonsai trees in the afternoon, and then sending me to bed early with a kiss on the head.

Three-year-olds are awesome:


  1. Good luck tomorrow with the procedure! Hope you get some real answers soon. We are still praying :) Speaking of the Sabbath day, Andrew lost his 1st tooth yesterday. When we were talking about the tooth fairy coming he said, "Mom! She can't come today. It's Sunday- it's the holy day!" So, she will have to wait until tonight. Even the tooth fairy needs a little rest on the Sabbath. P.S. I posted this on FB and Mindy Nightingale commented that she thinks the tooth fairy pays big bucks on holy days! :)

  2. Hey Allyson! It's Kelly (ingold) Nelson! How are you and your absolutely beautiful family doing?! I have miss you guys! I can't believe the last time I saw you guys was when you lived in Iowa City! Wow Time flies!! I want to hear all the things that are going on!

  3. Man, my heart goes out to you. I just remember having the same feelings when the girls were little babies, but I think that had something to do with the hormones. I can still understand, though. Hope things get resolved soon. Nothing is more frustrating than not knowing!


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