And then spring break was over

Today was my first day of work after the spring break. I spent the whole Sunday in angst and afraid that I wasn’t going to be able to pull it off. Well, I did. I managed it just fine. Got up super early, taught my classes, chatted with co-workers, and everything was ok. I’m actually proud of the way I handled myself. I did get one remark about looking sad from another teacher who’s sharp-eyed, but what I essentially got were “Whoa you got bangs” remarks that deflected the attention from other issues. But the thing is, I was trying so hard to be ok, that I actually convinced myself I was indeed fine, and that’s how I got through my workday.

And then…then it was time for therapy. I dreaded it a little because I knew I’d have to face what I’d been avoiding all day long in order to function. I know that once you open the worm can, you can try to close it but the smell will escape; once the warranty seal has been broken, its contents will inevitably escape the container.

I was actually in a good mood when I arrived at Mr. Shrinky’s office. We joked a bit about him moving the furniture around so that now he was sitting in what used to be the patient’s armchair. But I eventually had to update him on what’s been going on, including my severe anxiety attacks and the fact that not even the meds are being completely effective in reducing my symptoms. He basically told me the same thing that N said to me last week: my uncle’s passing, the last time I saw him, and the memories and nightmares that were triggered on that horrible night that followed are probably the cause of this chain-reaction that’s got me in a complete wreck.

And after therapy, the anxiety hit hard, so hard. The first thing I did when I got home was take the anti-anxiety med. Once again, I really didn’t care about feeling weak or crazy or any of that dumb rambling, I just wanted to stop feeling that bad. It took a while for it to kick in and meanwhile I was lying on my bed, wishing it would all just go away. Then I took a different approach: shiny things! I took out my ever-growing collection of nail lacquers and started with my toenails, I put together some pallets until I made one I was happy with, and proceeded to paint each nail a different color. Then I went on with the fingernails and even added some sparkly polish in the end. When I realized it, I had successfully spent an hour not feeling anxious. The only problem is as soon as I finished, the bitch came back, and I was not about to wipe my nails and start over just to enjoy another numb hour. I definitely feel better, the med really helps with the heart flips, but it doesn’t entirely wipe out the chest pains, that hollow sensation right in the middle of my chest.

I can only hope I won’t have to deal with this tomorrow since I won’t be seeing Mr. Shrinky until Wednesday. It might sound self-contradictory, but I wish I could accept his proposition of seeing me four times a week, because I feel like I’m walking on a very fine edge here. But I can’t afford it, I don’t have either the money or the time to do so, and I’ll have to play with the cards I’m given. Another option would be to stop seeing him altogether: today I proved myself that I can keep the sh*t locked away and function normally, so what if I decide to avoid it entirely? Will it explode on my face later on? Will it mean I’ll end up paying a higher price than dealing with it right now, even with the limitations that surround me?

I don’t think I will be posting for a bit. I’m gonna take a small break because I think I might also be triggering myself out. Or maybe I’ll try to write about other kinds of stuff like Juliet is doing, I think that’s a good idea. I’m going to take at least a couple of days to figure this out, try to find out how I can help myself or if I’m making things harder for me.

I’ll be seeing y’all shortly, be good!