#NaBloPoMo: Anxiety

We had a bit of a scare with Ringo last night. We were watching TV and he was sitting on the couch and I realized he was shaking. He wasn’t cold and he’s never done that before, so I started thinking maybe he’d eaten something he shouldn’t have. This is not unusual for Ringo. He’s always eating something gross, something that isn’t food, something he shouldn’t. We once had a vet recommend having him wear a muzzle on walks. My anxiety spiked, having heard stories of dogs starting to shake, then having a seizure and dying within 20 minutes of their first symptom. I put him and Eric in the car and drove to the emergency vet. They checked him out and drew some blood, determined he’d somehow tweaked his back and that’s why he was hurting. He has been running a lot the last few days and also playing frisbee in our snowy backyard, so he most likely just overdid it. He’s on pain meds for the next few days and luckily I have a direct connection to a physical therapy clinic for dogs, so I’ll be taking him in to get a fuller exam and some treatment. Honestly other than the 10 or so minutes of shivering, he’s fine.

I’m not so fine. I don’t know how much I’ve talked about it here, but I’ve got pretty bad anxiety. Developing complex ptsd only seemed to make it worse. As soon as I realized something was really wrong with Ringo, my jaw started to lock up and my teeth started chattering. This is an anxiety response I get that can be triggered by sometimes something small, and it really hurts. It’s essentially a panic attack, just with atypical symptoms. It only lasts about 5-10 minutes, but the tension it causes in my jaw and head usually lingers.

Once we got home, we gave Ringo his pills and went right to bed. I normally take 10 mg of a THC gummy at night (with the pain in my knees, it’s the only way I can sleep), but I skipped it. I wanted to be “present” if something came up with Ringo during the night. I was having hot flashes all night but also freezing cold so I slept terrible, constantly too hot or too cold or both. My stomach was also a mess. Everything was fine, but my hypervigilance was in high gear. This morning, I feel hung over.

I meditated this morning. Eric did what he could to make me feel better and Ringo is clearly fine. I taught a yoga class. We laughed a lot. One of the vets I teach brought her new puppy, an eight week old Corgi named Henry. I texted some friends and made dinner plans with some others. I’m going to make myself a yummy breakfast bagel and watch a little TV, maybe take a short nap. Later I have therapy. It’s a strange thing — to be a total wreck and also completely fine. To think that things will never get better and to know I’ll be okay, that it will all work out. To want to give up and keep going no matter what. To feel like the world is an awful place and be surrounded by nothing but love.

I'd love to hear what you think, kind and gentle reader.

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