A Slightly Different Kind of Sunday With April

Anxiety – the kind that interferes with life – is tricky business.

I have worked through phobias and some of the anxieties I created due to years of untreated anxiety. These days I take medication and attend therapy sessions to tame my anxious thoughts. My goal is to be able to live a life without medication.

…..but then it sneaks up on me. It’s as if it’s lying in wait for just the right moment to strike. It’s like an animal that stalks and taunts me, then attacks from behind.

For two days, I was having chest pains and it dialed up my health anxiety, which caused more chest pains. So I consulted Dr. Google because I knew women presented with different symptoms than men during a heart attack, I didn’t know what those symptoms were. In the past, I have believed I was having heart issues during an anxiety attack, but I knew I was in the midst of anxiety. This time I experienced a different sort of chest pain and I didn’t believe I was having an anxiety attack.

I took my usual medications and the pain subsided. I thought to myself, aha–anxiety. But the pain came back Monday morning and it scared me enough that it scared my husband. Off we went to the emergency room.

As you might have guessed, my heart is fine and I received a bit of instruction from Nurse Too Cheery-First Thing In The Morning Pants regarding the difference between a heart attack and a panic/anxiety attack.

Anyway, needless to say, my week didn’t start off well but I did find a few satisfactory items which made me smile:

  • I didn’t have a heart attack.

  • The patience of my husband.

  • I finished painting a bedroom and bathroom – two coats! Oh, plus a couple coats of primer.

  • The little cat we inherited from our youngest performed some acrobatic flying up the stairs. She’s a nimble little critter.

  • The same little cat swished her tail through the paint tray. Well—it’s funny now, but at the time I wasn’t smiling.

  • Our cupboards are bare and the refrigerator has a few science experiments a-brewing but I managed to gain a couple of pounds. That really didn’t make me smile either, but it has inspired me to exercise.

p.s. we no longer have any chocolate chips, coconut, or crackers πŸ˜€

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About April

I'll come back to this when I find out who I really am. I've been through some extremely rough patches but they have made me a better person. I blog if my brain is functioning first thing in the morning.
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36 Responses to A Slightly Different Kind of Sunday With April

  1. I’m happy that your heart is healthy April πŸ˜‰

  2. Good to know it wasn’t your heart.. And also you have love of family around.. And here’s to the exercise regime.. I would have thought all that painting and decorating was better than any work-out πŸ™‚
    Enjoy your weekend and week..
    Blessings Sue

  3. Gallivanta says:

    Good to know your heart is fine. But, my, you have been busy.

  4. babysteps22 says:

    Aren’t you busy? πŸ˜› I’m glad it wasn’t your heart. πŸ™‚

    • April says:

      Yeah, I felt really bad/stupid for taking up a bed in the emergency room but I did discover that if you want to get treated quickly, say you have chest pains.

      • babysteps22 says:

        I’m a person who equates paper cuts to amputations so obviously I’m not going to agree with you for feeling bad/stupid about that. Ah! You discovered our secret! I’m spending 5 years in medical school to learn to hide the list of priorities from others. We are being careless. :/

  5. It never fails to surprise me just how vast the effects of stress on a body are. Anxiety stress can have some of the worst ones.I’m relieved to hear your heart is still going strong but I’d bet those extra pounds are courtesy of stress. Your determination to keep going and not give up is inspiring, thank you.

    • April says:

      Yes…I’m a grazer and I thought if I just avoid the grocery store it would help. I have to remind myself to replace the ‘comfort’ food gives me with something more positive.

  6. aviets says:

    I hate that you had to go through this, but so glad that there was a “happy” ending (if you can call anxiety “happy”).

    Congrats on the painting success. Now that our bathroom is done I’ve decided to tackle my husband’s and my bedroom – I blame the IKEA catalog that arrived in the mail yesterday.

    • April says:

      Our bedroom in next—but we are still waiting on the shower enclosure to be finished. They say Monday…..we shall see.

  7. meANXIETYme says:

    I’m very empathetic to what you went through. As in, been there, done that, wish I hadn’t gotten the tee shirt. Every year or so I get a bug in my head about my heart because of my health anxiety and I end up back in the cardiologist’s office. Fortunately, he’s a good doctor and I like him–he treats me well and doesn’t poo-poo me–so it’s not terrible. But anxiety sucks.
    I’m glad you’re okay, but sorry you had to deal with that. We are a work in progress, so continue your journey!

  8. So glad your heart’s OK April. ❀
    Diana xo

  9. ecteedoff says:

    It’s amazing the physiological impact psychological distress causes our bodies. I get migraines often when I’m overwhelmed and anxious. Actually, because so many anti-anxiety medications are addictive, my doctor has me on a blood pressure medication. As my anxiety increases, I take one. It lowers my heart rate and therefore my breathing rate and relaxes my body. This often takes the edge of the anxiety and therefore it’s like I’m attacking the anxiety from the other angle. Instead of mental to physical, I go physical to mental. There are still days when it’s not enough, but the meds don’t make me groggy and I would imagine it would help with some of the physical reactions your body is having. However, I’m just glad you’re ok and I’m proud of you for going to the hospital. We might feel embarrassed if we go and nothing is wrong, but it’s better than not going because of pride and something is wrong. Any big project can cause anxiety – and it’s amazing to me how it creeps up on you. Like you don’t actively think about the things that are causing you stress – this past week I had severe nausea and just was so exhausted. After a few days, I sat down and tried to clear my mind to figure out what was bothering me and I realized that while it might not be right in front of my face, I’m freaking out about my future. Anxiety is annoying right there, just waiting to trip you up but you are handling it well and having compassion for yourself and you have shown me in your posts that it compassion is something you are good at and continue to work at so keep at it!

    • April says:

      Thanks! I think I have been worried about our future a bit more than I thought. I thought I had more control over my thoughts and could learn to avoid full on anxiety attacks, but I need to pay closer attention.

  10. I’m super happy your heart is healthy and not attacking you. AND for the wonderful husband. Anxiety and heart issues….often feel the same. 😦

  11. Don says:

    April, I just had a marvellous chuckle with your, “Nurse Too Cheery-First Thing In The Morning Pants.” Hell, I had a good laugh. Thank you. πŸ™‚

  12. mewhoami says:

    It’s good to hear that your heart is healthy. It can be a scare and it’s better to be safe than sorry. I have to agree with Don about your nurse’s name. That was very funny. πŸ™‚ Hopefully the painted cat tail didn’t cause paint to fly everywhere.

  13. reocochran says:

    April, so very, very glad you went to the hospital. It is always reassuring even if nurses are annoying, to check out any kind of repeated heart located pains! I would never hesitate, so glad your husband also wanted to take you. This is so sweet and you are blessed with a healthy heart and someone who still is in your heart and life. πŸ™‚
    Here are my excuses for lateness to the Sunday post:
    I had my grandsons and went to the pool on Sunday, then Monday long day at work and wanted to get home for television. πŸ™‚ I watched “Major Crimes” and tonight, need to get outside to see the circling International Space Station at 9:06 looking SW in the sky. I had some jealousy of my brothers great photos of this on my Dad’s birthday on Friday, (he has been gone for 14 years, no worries about celebrating, but we always look to the sky to see what Dad has been ‘rearranging’ lately.) I also need to rush back in after it passes, only three to four minutes and then watch “Rizzoli and Isles.”
    Your newest addition to the home, thanks to your youngest sounds amazing and entertaining. Paint on tail is a little like a toddler, something YOU end up adjusting (by closing door to keep kids or cat out) or you ‘put up with.’ Happy week, April. Take care and hope the anxiety eases up, dear friend.

    • April says:

      Thanks Robin! I like how you remember your dad.

      • reocochran says:

        I am glad you like the way I express this. I had a 4 year old student who had congestive heart failure (he had a small portable oxygen tank.) When Will died after we went to the zoo, his mother and father had opened casket and he was in his little red wagon, I immediately got an image of Will. I went up with his therapy team and my asst. teacher I said, ” Will is with Noah and the animals from the Ark.” His mother loved this image, April. I d I D a pen and ink drawing of Noah with his arm around Will, red hair with tiny glasses, painted it with watercolors. Will’s Mom took it out of the frame and got it shrunk and made into notecards. She sends me one every year from Texas with his sister, Jessica’s updates. She graduated from high school and she is a lovely girl. She already went on a mission trip. Jessica was one year younger than Will and was one of our typically developing peer group. If you believe in this kind of Heaven which some don’t, it helps to imagine the deceased in a certain area. My Grandma M. is in the beautiful perfect Garden. πŸ™‚

        • reocochran says:

          Did you have a relaxed week since last week’s anxiety? I forget if you have a vacation? If you are at work. . . Never mind! If you are on break, I am at my son’s house and Jamie and Trista are at hospital. She went a week with her hip dislocated from her pelvic bone, big baby! They Let her go home to try natural way. But now she is being induced. New baby boy today! πŸ™‚

  14. Glynis Jolly says:

    Glad to know it wasn’t a heart attack and, instead, your heart is just fine. ❀ The first time I had a chest pain, I was still in my 20s. Yep, a little scary. Turned out that I had/have a slight hernia of the diaphragm. It’s an annoyance but easy enough to take care of, at least for me. I just have to put myself in a ball and quickly jack-knife out of that position. It stops the pinching sensation in my chest. No more pain until the next time and that isn’t often at all.

    Now that you’ve cleaned your refrigerator, want to mosey on up to my place here in Tennessee and do mine? πŸ˜› For some odd reason, I’ve never had extra coconut in the house. I’ll use it for cookies at Christmas time and it’s gone. Of course, I am getting the smallest bag/packet of it that I can.

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