Life After Divorce











{March 8, 2009}   Panic! at the Disco

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So, it has been a while since my letter to myself. I had much to consider. I appreciate all of the comments left on that post.  It seemed to inspire strong feelings on all sides… and I adore my girls for jumping in.  It was very cleansing for my soul to write to myself.

Since I wrote that letter (not because of it, mind you…) I have had some issues in the health department.  I would like to talk about a little thing called Anxiety.  I think I have spoken of it before.  I have also blogged about it HERE . 

In January, I started to have panic attacks again.  The attacks would come mostly at work, in the middle of the day, when I am LEAST able to handle them.  I have tried breathing into a paper bag… Laying on the floor in the middle of my darkened training room trying to breathe in and out… Shit… I have even tried acupuncture.  All to no avail.  So when I realized that these were becoming a daily occurrence (AGAIN!), I decided to seek some help.  I ran straight to my primary care doctor who has been treating me for the last 8 years or so.  He is also Steve’s doctor.

The day I went to his office was like nearly EVERY other time I have ever been there.  Millions of snotting, hacking people waiting in the waiting room… a REALLY long wait time to get in.  I could feel the germs climbing all over me [shudder].  I am not even a germaphobe and I was wigging out!  Oh wait… duh… anxiety!  Can I just say that a 2 hour wait time does nothing to help anxiety?  Yeah, thanks.  But, the doctor is really good and I have always felt comfortable with him.  So I wait.  When I finally get called back by the nurse, who also knows me and my husband well, she is not surprised to see me.  Steve had been in the week before, so I knew that he had told them about the separation.  She was asking me questions and laughing and joking around about cutting her first husband free.  It was great to see someone who got it!

Then the doctor came in to see me.  I told him that it was happening again, and I wanted to get some treatment before I ended up in the hospital again.  I told him that I wanted to be on a daily pill so that I could keep the attacks from ever starting, rather than just treating them once they were underway.  I don’t like to feel that way… and I pretty much don’t stop unless I am sedated.  Not fun.  He puts me on Lexapro, which I have taken before and liked.  I didn’t remember but it is the same medicine that my roommate takes.  Interesting! 

But I am sitting there with Dr. K and I mentioned that I had left Steve… the conversation went a little something like this:

           Me:  You know… I left Steve.

          Dr:  Yeah… I was wondering how you were doing when he told me that.

          Me:  It was time.  It really felt like the right thing to do.  I don’t know why all of this anxiety started again!

          Dr:  Is he calling you much?

          Me:  Every Day

          Dr:  How about texting?

          Me: Incessantly!   <click>

          Dr:  Yeah… I was afraid of that.

          Me:  Sonofabitch!

          Dr: [gazing off and thinking out loud] I wonder if it is possible to block his number and block him from texting…

I love my doctor.

So, I started taking the Lexapro daily.  I had a few interesting side effects.  Only one is worth mentioning.  One night I sneezed and got a BIZARRE electrical shock throughout my entire spine… up into my head… wrapped around to my chest… down to my toes.  I immediately panicked and thought I might be having a stroke.  I threw my hands up in the air (first sign of a stroke, if you can’t)… and sighed.  I told my roommate about it and she thought it odd.  Oh… and the bruises.  I started getting odd bruises with no recollection of how they got there.  You can read my roommate’s blog to hear more about the Lexapro bruising.

But the calls kept coming… If I didn’t answer… he would text.  If I didn’t respond to the text… he would keep calling.  It was a vicious cycle.  So I would answer.  And then the anxiety would set in.

“When are you coming back?”  “Don’t you want to give it a shot?”  “I am a different person – You will see!”

[Insert brain convulsing here]

face-argh

And then it happened.  One night I was spending time with my cousin and her new baby, along with my sister and my niece.  It was a really nice evening.  My aunt ordered pizza for everyone.  Steve called and decided to give me an ultimatum [snort].  I told him… VERY politely… that I was spending time with my family and could not discuss anything with him at that time.  So he pushed.  I got ugly.  I hung up.  I went to take a bite of my pizza.  I was not feeling so good.  But, since I never felt that great, I decided to take another bite.  Ugh.  That was it.  I was sick.  I convinced my sister that we needed to leave.  NOW.  I had already excused myself twice and I could feel the cold sweats coming on.  It was time to get the heck out of dodge!

I managed to make it back to her house without incident… but was apprehensive about the ride the rest of the way home.  I looked around my car to be prepared.  Ahhh… thank goodness for a messy car and a large mouth water bottle (Thank you, Aquafina… I would like my endorsement check made out to CASH)… which I might add came in very handy, as I am a pro at… um… driving while barfing“multi-tasking.”  I remained sick for the rest of the night and didn’t sleep a wink.  I called into work about 6am to let them know that I would not be joining them for another day in paradise [flat affect].  I managed to finally get some sleep, off and on, but remained sick for the majority of the day.  And then I slept.  And slept.  And slept.  Like Rip Van Winkle mating with a hibernating bear.  15 hours I slept.  When I awoke early Friday morning, I felt somewhat better, though physically exhausted.  I decided to take one more sick day to get my strength up.  I had gotten all of my work submitted, so I felt pretty good.  I even ventured to try a few bites of food.  Sugar Free Jello?  Check!  Toast?  Check!  Both stayed down perfectly. 

Until…

The disco started.  Strobe light flashing.  Music pumping.  Hookers dancing.  It was Studio 54 all over again.  And I had an all night pass.

Sunday… I awoke and felt… ok… for a while.  By the time my roommate Lori woke… I was flipping out.  I felt like my heart might literally burst.  I couldn’t stand it one more minute.  A thought flashed in my head… just for a brief moment… if I ran head first into that wall… WOW… OK IDIOT… TIME TO ACT.  I find that when you actually entertain the notion of hurting yourself… in any way… no matter how moronic… it is time to get help.  I asked Lori to drive me to the emergency room.  I called and asked my mom if she would meet us there.  She suggested that I call an ambulance if my chest was hurting.  So we did.  I was oddly peaceful knowing that they were coming to save me from my nightmare.  Even if the bastards did track mud all over my carpet [grumble].  EKG – check.  No heart attack imminent.  They strapped me on a gurney and wheeled me under the flashing lights into the ambulance.  I don’t know why they proceed to ask you a million questions.  Then they read out vitals and write them down wrong 30 seconds later. 

It was like the Three Stooges of medical care. 

But I didn’t care. 

I was on my way for help.

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