Hi, sweet friends! Continuing my mix of style + substance with today’s post – I’m sharing my new leopard shorts + an anxiety check in. It’s all too easy to see posts on here or Instagram and assume my life is carefree – all cute clothes and open mouth smiles. That’s not real life. Real life is…real.
This post is long overdue. Buckle up…
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I ordered these leopard shorts from Amazon a few weeks ago and let me tell you: if you dream of getting away with wearing pajamas in public, these are for you. No, they’re not pajama shorts. BUT they feel like it and are crazy comfy. I’m wearing XS.
Alright, deep breath.
It’s not lost on me that I’m sharing an anxiety check-in while also experiencing the greatest loss of my life. The timing isn’t the best. Or, maybe it’s perfect. TBD.
First of all, grief is brutal. Over the past 6 weeks, it has knocked the wind out of me and caught me off guard more times than I can count. It’s relentless and unforgiving and could care less about my to do lists and plans and…life.
So, there’s that.
Managing my anxiety in the wake of this loss has at times felt like trying to stay afloat in an angry, churning sea. It’s near impossible, at this point, to untangle my anxiety from my grief.
For the first few weeks after my dad’s death, I experienced prolonged panic attacks. Racing heart, shallow breathing, tight chest, ALL DAY LONG. It was all I could do to remind myself to breathe through it all and remember that it wouldn’t last. It couldn’t last.
Now 6 weeks in, the panic has lessened, but the anxiety is ever-present.
Anxiety can look different for different people.
Aside from the typical looming thoughts of dread and fear, my anxiety often moonlights as impatience and irritability.
Some days are better than others, and I’ve tried recently to pay more attention to what helps. What makes the good days good and the bad days bad?
I’ll be sharing my anxiety toolbox in another post soon, but here’s a quick list of what has been helping my anxiety:
Zoloft | I often get asked if I’m still on it. Yes, a very low dose. For now, it’s helping and I am going with it.
Exercise | If depression is a sloth, then anxiety is a hummingbird. Exercise is crucial for me to release that frenetic energy that will otherwise wreak havoc. I have noticed a HUGE difference in my anxiety on days I don’t make time to sweat.
Writing | Must like exercise, writing is a much-needed release. I’m trying to get better at journaling in the morning or right before bed.
No alcohol | I can’t stress this enough – if you have anxiety, alcohol is the WORST thing you can turn to. I know we’ve been programmed to believe that a glass of wine will help, but even just one glass will increase your anxiety. If you’re curious, read this article by Laura McKowen, one of my fav sober authors.
I’ll continue to share these anxiety check-ins, because I think it’s SO important to normalize not feeling “normal.”
Anxiety can be a bitch, but with the right tools it doesn’t have to rule my life. Hell, I refuse to let it rule my life.
OK, off to start my Monday. Thank you, as always, for your support. Baring my heart can be scary, but having this supportive community here to catch me makes it much easier. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like to talk about, I’d love to hear! Leave it in the comments below…