I have a bit of a thing I’ve been mulling over disclosing for some time. Actually, two things but let’s just start with one for now.
I have mentioned my battle with pain associated with my legs during this pregnancy but I have not mentioned another condition which compounds it.
My name is Fiona and I suffer from Anxiety Disorder.
I was sorta half diagnosed with this a few years ago while undergoing treatment for the other condition which I’m yet to get the courage to talk openly about. It was not properly diagnosed at that time because it was a secondary issue. It was something which was noted could be slowing my progression but that was about all.
Skip forward to 2014 and the pregnancy hormones racing around my body doing all the things they should to build a baby…and a few things to really upset my internal apple-cart. Generalised Anxiety Disorder which was well managed and under control started to creep ever slowly into the foreground of my life.
Now couple this with chronic and worsening pain.
Now add the mother of all heartburn/reflux (to a level where coughing up blood and nosebleeds are a daily event).
Now add gestational hypertension.
I sure have.
Today I had wave after wave after ceaseless wave of panic attacks. Many of these were observed by my psychologist who put her foot down and said enough is enough. She questioned some medication I was on for those other conditions and sent me post-haste off to the hospital to either have the medication changed or, failing a suitable alternative medication, to have a baby…4 weeks early!
Frankly, I was so ready to have the baby. My body feels like a warzone. It is at war with itself. However, the medical team feel they have found a viable alternative drug for me and so I’m now on new meds and baby is still tucked up inside and giving me reassuring kicks.
The next week could prove to be a trying one as the new meds may take a while to get used to. Meanwhile, the heightened anxiety which was being caused by the anti-reflux drug should begin to settle down.
I am grateful for a supportive partner who has helped carry me during all those times I could not carry myself. He gives me strength when I have none. He reassures me without ever being patronising. He is a constant when I am flailing and failing to stay in reality. I could not weather this without him.
I may always have anxiety as part of my life journey but I think I’ve got some good support around me and strategies from within to help me cope with what is thrown at me.
For anyone who feels they aren’t coping, I cannot stress enough the importance of acknowledging one’s own need for help. It is ok to ask for help and it is really ok to accept it when offered.
Anxiety is an illness just like any other. Seek treatment.