We can’t continue doing things that we don’t like or things we’re not meant to do simply because popular phraseology commands that we strive onward.
Panic disorder is part of my life now. There’s no use in trying to deny it and trying to push myself to conform to my old standard of “normal”.
And my dream is that you’ll read about these situations, identify with them, and feel comforted knowing that it’s not just you.
To make the past few days more tolerable, I’ve been hitting up the medicine cabinet — but staying mindful about what I put into my body. Like many other panic sufferers, I’m always a bit nervous when I take any sort of medicine. What if it makes me hyper? What if it makes me nervous? What if it makes me panic?
Larry’s antidepressant medication didn’t help to lighten his self-criticism. He tackled that piece on his own.
(This is the eighth post in a series called “Anxiety Society” in which I interview everyday anxiety suffers from all walks of life about their struggles, their triumphs, their coping methods, and more. I believe that the more we openly talk about our mental health, the less of a “thing” it becomes. Conversation can reduce stigma, and my interviewees want to be a part of that.)
Meet Larry Nocella: blogger and independent novelist. He sold his first article at the young age of 14 and “has been writing ever since,” he says. By day, Larry is full-time employee at marketing company and a (mostly former) sufferer of anxiety & depression. He lives, writes, and works in the greater Philadelphia area.
Just over a year ago, he “came out” on his blog as a user of antidepressant medication:
Do I tell you something I’d rather keep private? Or do I spill the ugly details?
I’ve decided to share. Why? Because of you of course. Yes, you. Reading this. You. Or maybe someone you know.
Because there is definitely a time when sharing beats silence, and that’s if you can help people. Mom was all about helping people, so while I lean toward her style of privacy, I think she’d appreciate why I’ve decided to come out.
What I’m trying to tell you is I take an anti-depressant. Were you expecting me to say something else?
Larry and I talked about his anxiety, depression, his medication use, and his optimism for the future.
It’s time for the monthly panic, anxiety, and phobia support group phone call. Led by Grace, a longtime panic sufferer living in the DC area, the call is open to anyone and everyone who is experiencing a problem with anxiety or its close cousins.
I Googled “most relaxing song ever”. And what did I expect to find? Well, a bunch of songs esteemed Most Relaxing by the court of popular opinion. But instead, I found…science. Maybe.
Check out those sweet shades they gave me so that I wouldn’t get toothdust in my eyes. In combination with all of that dental stuff coming out of my mouth, I sort of look bionic.
At 5:30 this morning, I found myself curled up with a bathrobe and a rug.