Anxiety Sucks

My past few weeks have been filled with a lot of panic attacks and anxiety. Actually I’m not sure they are panic attacks, but they are what I’d consider panic attacks. I get this feeling  of anxiety, a little tightness in my chest, I feel like my heart rate is fast, but it isn’t, and I just find myself unable to calm down even with deep breathing.

Kind of sounds like a heart attack when I write it out that way, but at the moment I need to stay off WebMD. I know it’s anxiety. I have had a lot on my plate. I worry a lot in general. I stick my foot in my mouth quite often and deal with the repercussions, which require a significant amount of my time stressing about how to deal with things.

I worry about my kids. Am I doing enough? Am i doing too much? What am I doing wrong? My son has been downright nasty lately. Maybe you can say it’s that he’s almost 13 and that’s typical, but dear lord. He walks in the house and immediately starts being nasty to my youngest daughter. He goes out of his way to be mean.

He argues with me constantly because clearly it’s my fault that he’s in special education for a reading disability and he wants me to tell the school he doesn’t need to go anymore. And he just won’t let things go. EVER! He will talk about something until you want to give in…that’s the plan, I think. But I don’t fall for it.

He recently went off his ADHD medicine and I’m beginning to think this was a bad decision. I feel like it’s adding to his behavior issues. I don’t want to be constantly arguing with him or telling him to calm down. He’s an amazing kid. One on one, he’s so awesome, but he’s so freakin selfish. I just don’t get it.

If his sister’s get to do anything, he gets angry and needs to do something better. He does a LOT! We may not be rich, but we do a lot for our kids to be able to do the sports they want and activities, etc. Out trip to Disney almost sent me over the edge. Any time his sisters wanted to go on a ride he didn’t want to go. If he wanted to go on something then the group could be happy and have fun, but if he was miserable, we all were miserable.

I need to talk to someone about it, or bring him back to therapy because I am at my wit’s end. It’s adding to my stress, but certainly not all of it.

I feel like in my 40s I shouldn’t be worrying about childish games that girls play, but some people never grow up. The gossip and nastiness never ends. It’s not one thing in particular, but rather a general feeling of no longer being included. There is a part of me that’s really okay because even I know I don’t fit in. I’m far from the cool kid, HAHA. But I guess it’s that I don’t know what I did that’s bugging me.

What I’ve decided is to handle it differently than usual. I need to look at people for who they are. I have a lot of really terrific people in my life. I may not be that person who goes out every weekend and posts pics all over FB drinking with my friends, but I have friends that make me laugh, smile, and that I know have my back as I have theirs.

So back to the anxiety…I think that with everything going on it’s this breaking point and at random points through the day my body just says, “ok I’m done, you need to stop now.” I don’t like medicine, but I have been taking a half of a Xanax when I need it. It helps takes that edge off and then I use my breathing and some essential oils. I won’t push those on anyone, but I’m starting to use them and I think for certain things they do help me.

I’m not crazy trying to cure everything with them, but headaches, relaxation, stress, sore muscles, etc., they work pretty well.

My only good news (other than my friend from my last blog is doing magnificent and is already home from the hospital) is that I think the change in medication has finally allowed me to start losing weight. I was gaining anywhere between 1-3 pounds per week for over a year. Nothing I did would stop it. I exercised like a maniac. Tried every diet plan…everything. I was eating under 1000 calories a day and wouldn’t lose a pound.

A few months after a medication switch I’m finally seeing the weight come off. I am down 20lbs since November, but 10lbs since February. This is huge for me. I couldn’t get the scale to move forever.

I’m also feeling well enough to lightly walk and jog on the treadmill. I’m slow as hell. I’m lucky is I can jog for 3 minutes, but I keep going and I feel pretty good. I was so diligent before we left for Disney and I need to get back to it. My FitBit was keeping me accountable. I’ll get back on track tomorrow, though I’m sure I’ll be going backward in stamina.

Anyway, this blog was all over the place. That’s how scattered I’ve been. Maybe I have ADHD. I’m old and crotchety and I think in my old age I am less tolerant of people who are fake. I don’t have time. I am working hard to surround myself with happy people. It’s not easy letting go of friends that have been around for a while, but let me tell you, Facebook has this new acquaintance feature. It’s fabulous!

You can list your friends as acquaintances and choose not to share things with acquaintances. I decided I didn’t need the people that I don’t really see or talk with to have access to my posts, pictures, etc. I’m not deleting them. They can see my comments, etc. just not every post. I LOVE that! It’s helping me not be an unfriending bitch while still keeping things private from those with whom I question their trust.

I’ll try not to be so scattered next time!!




I Shouldn’t Be This Pissed Off


Maybe I shouldn’t be, but I am pissed. It’s opening night of my daughter’s play (she’s a munchkin in the Wizard of Oz) and when does my husband get home? 5pm. That doesn’t sound so bad, does it? The play starts at 8:30, we need to be there at 7:30 to get a spot. All is good. But, no. No, he takes my other two children out on the boat to go tubing “for an hour.” Because I’m so sure that was really going to happen. Somehow I knew I’d be carrying chairs, blankets, food, and everything else into the outdoor theater…and I was right.

Let me recap. I’m sick. I have strep. I’m coughing like a maniac and using my rescue inhaler consistently every four hours. I get my daughter to practice on time, do her make-up, etc. then I lug all our crap to the line. Twenty-minutes later, someone taps me on the shoulder and says that they think my mother-in-law is trying to describe me to people who work there. Did she tell me she was coming? Of course not? Will anyone that works at the event know who the hell I am? No. My daughter is not the star of the show, she’s a munchkin. There are about 30 munchkins. I doubt most of the people who work there even know her name, let alone mine.

Long story short, a friend of my sister-in-law’s saw her and pointed her in my direction. So now I was not only lugged four fold-up chairs, and two large canvas bags with food and blankets, I now had my mother-in-law. My night just kept getting better. When we finally were allowed in and got set up, I sat down to relax because walking with, and holding the chairs was way more than I should have done. On one hand, during my two trips from the car with the chairs, I got a decent workout, but while trying to carry everything at once to the seats, it was painful.

My son called a few minutes after we got settled to inform me that I gave his dad only two tickets and they needed three. My answer: buy one at the door. There wasn’t much I could do about it at that point. We also had to go over what food I bought, which further annoyed me. Then when they arrived, I got another call that they forgot the tickets in the car so I needed to come up to the ticket stand and wait with the kids while the husband went back for the tickets. I swear his head is up his ass sometimes. So he gets back and gets in line to buy a ticket and realizes (DUH) that I DID hand him three tickets (Of course I did!).

Let’s just say he annoyed the crap out of me from 5pm on this evening, but once the show started it was all about my daughter in her 10 minutes on stage (LOL) with her headband with flowers sticking out of it. This was the first big show that she didn’t look scared. It’s a big deal, so of course I cried. I always cry…at everything. It was a good show. Perhaps I’m biased but I think they could have found some better singers for some of the lead roles. While Dorothy was a great actress, she wasn’t that great of a singer. She was good…but not fantastic. I guess I’m comparing it to when my daughter was in the Sound of Music. The girl who played Maria and the teens in that just blew me away. There seemed to be a lot of nepotism with this theater company though. The board members all had big roles like the Scarecrow and Lion, and there was a munchkin that drove a lot of us parents nuts.

She needed to be front and center for everything and was picked first for anything and everything…yep, she was the daughter of someone who worked there, too. My daughter isn’t the kid who cares about that stuff. She’s still really shy and not even raising her hand for special parts (I’m working on those pep talks), but I overheard a LOT of chatter from other parents about how upset their kids were. For my daughter, the whole thing was fun and truly, what more could I ask for? I am very proud of her.

And I’m also proud of me, because after wanted to disown my other two children due to their behavior yesterday, I can honestly say I enjoyed time with both of them today and they were so much better. As a parent, I guess it helps to know we all have those days. If you spend too much time reading Facebook there are so many phony people. I have people on my friend list that are posting like 10 pics a day all summer about how they are spending time with their kids. I don’t need to take a picture and put it on social media to show that I’m spending time with my kids. I read with my son for over an hour today. I didn’t put that in my status or take a picture for instagram.

I find myself just working hard on keeping it all together. I’m a mom of three living with an autoimmune disease. I don’t know what I’m going to feel like tomorrow and that makes planning things very difficult. It scares me, and it scares my kids at times. I don’t dwell on it too much because I’m well aware that things could always be worse–and I’m not one to tempt fate and have God show me how much worse it can be.

I guess my moral of the evening is that I think most of us are struggling to hold it together. On the outside everyone seems like they are doing great, but we all have those moments in the car where we are yelling at the kids, or panicking for what seems like no reason, or just grumpy because you feel like crap. Everyone has something going on and some of us hide it, others talk about it. There’s no right or wrong way, but today the phoniness of Facebook was bothering me so I figured I’d vent about it.

I’m really happy that you and your kids are tracing leaves and that you have the nicest husband ever. Mine was a jackass tonight, but my kids didn’t annoy me today so I’m still going to call that a win!


A Mish-Mosh of Thoughts


It’s been a long few days. I started a blog last night and lost my mojo about two paragraphs into it. I started out very energetic yesterday. I taught a ridiculously tough class, and then I paid for it the rest of the day. I thought I pulled something in my shoulder, but then every one of my fibro trigger points started to flare, and my knees started to really hurt.

I ended up going to bed early with ice packs. Today I woke up with sore abs, which is always something that makes me happy because it means I taught a good class the day before. My body was sore from the workout, but not really in joint or fibro pain, which was a bit of a surprise, as I thought I was headed into a big flare.

I ended up being able to sleep most of the morning, which was nice. I’ve been dealing with a lot with my son, and it’s really been weighing on me. Today I got an email from a neighbor asking if my son told me what happened on the bus this morning. Of course, that answer was no. She explained that two boys were picking on him so bad that the driver got involved. When one of the boys told the driver “everyone hates” my son, my neighbor’s daughter stood up and said she liked him and he was a great person. How sweet is that. That took a lot of guts for a fifth grade girl to stand up to older boys on the bus. Kudos to her, she certainly has my thanks and respect.

The trouble with this particular instance is one of the boys is the son of a friend of mine. Awkward. Now my son isn’t innocent, but he’s not mean. The problem with my son is he’s insecure and tried way too hard to fit in. In the process he says dumb things to look cool…and the cool kids see right through that attempt. I’ve tried telling him to just stop and be himself. He’s such a nice kid. People will like him for who he is, but he’s at that age where he so wants to be cool. It’s not an easy time for me as a parent. In fact, it sucks!

Anyway, enough of my parenting drama. Let me get to my friend drama of the week. Remember that friend that didn’t want me to write the blog? I think I mentioned he deleted me from Facebook because I snapped at him one evening. Well, he also blocked me now (childish, I know) because he found out that I commented about him unfriending my dog. Haha! That even sounds funny writing it out.

So it got me to thinking about our friendship a few days ago. Over the past four or five years, he’s friended and unfriended me more times than I can count. I always cut him some slack because I know he’s had a rough life and I know he has a lot on his plate being a single father, etc. Well, this time I thought, you know what, I’m not a schmuck. At some point when he needs something or when his latest BFF turns out to be a jerk, he’ll remember that I’m a good person and decide to contact me, and this time I’m just not going to be around for that opportunity. I took the childish route and blocked him, too. And you know what? It felt darn good, and I haven’t thought twice about the decision. I wish him nothing but the best, but I don’t need his drama. Done.

Tomorrow starts my weekend of dance recital mania. It’s our first group of recitals with this dance studio, so I’m really excited to see how it all works. I get nervous, but the girls seem happy. It should be cute. I love seeing them perform. I’m fairly sure my youngest daughter is as excited about getting to wear makeup on stage as she is about her dance. I think my teenage years with her are going to put me over the edge.

And now some random thoughts on the world:

#1. Justin Bieber needs to go away. That video of him singing using the N-word is terrible, especially because he would not be where he is without the help of Usher, who happens to be black. In my book, Bieber is an ass.

#2. Gwenyth Paltrow: I think I said this the other night, but it’s worth repeating. Gwenyth is a pretentious ass.

#3. I’m not sure what to think of the Bowe Bergdahl situation. I feel like there is so much more to the story. Why did we release 5 high ranking Taliban people for him. I’m all about not leaving any of our men behind, but did he really walk off and put other men in danger doing so? Did other men lose their lives looking for him? I have so many questions.

#4. Do I care that Kendall Jenner got her own apartment? Tat Kanye bought Kim a painting or that Kourtney is pregnant? No! I wish they’d all go away.

Last, are you following Brutus on Twitter? @Brutusflamingo He has a lot to say on pop culture.


Have a good night!

Wait for It…I’m Okay


As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog, I had five trigger point injections yesterday and I was pretty sore last night. I was wondering how I’d feel this morning, and I was a bit sore when I woke up. I was able to teach my class without too much trouble, but I certainly didn’t do a lot of shoulder work, and it wasn’t my toughest class ever, though we had a lot of fun as usual.

If there is one thing about my Pilates/sculpting class that I love the most, it’s that I always leave there laughing. We’re a fun group of ladies of all ages and lord only knows how we get on these strange topics some mornings, but we have a blast. but I do  morning we got on the subject of childbirth, practically scaring a newlywed girl to death. We also solved the missing jet dilemma, figured out the winner of Dancing with the Stars, and decided that one class member would make a very pretty Amish woman after we all tuned in to watch one of the Amish reality shows.

Needless to say, we add humor into our workout, but I do work them hard. To be honest, even on days where I can hardly move I still want to go because they are so much fun. They know my situation and there are days where I can’t do everything that I make them do, but I do what I can.

By mid-day today I started feeling pretty darn good. I was almost afraid to think it (we’ve all been there, not wanting to jinx the moment). I actually have some energy and I am feeling alright. My hip is mildly annoying, but if that’s the worst I can say, it’s a darn good day.

If you haven’t joined out Autoimmune Mama Facebook Page, please do! We’ve had a lot of new members in the past week and it’s becoming a great place to ask questions. I actually learned something exciting for me today when one of the members told me that Topamax helps her fibromyalgia. You might remember that I just started Topamax again, so I’m remaining hopeful that it will have the same positive effect on me…it could be part of why I’m feeling good today. I’m trying to be positive.

If there is one thing I’m learning from everyone that has reached out is that no two people with autoimmune issues are exactly alike, but we all have something to learn from each other. The support and understanding has meant so much. I get tired of talking to people who have no idea what I mean when I say I’m too tired to take a shower, or I need to lay down after I take a shower because I’m exhausted.

Not every day is bad, but don’t ask me how I feel if you don’t want a truthful answer! Just because I tell you the truth doesn’t mean I’m complaining about my situation. It’s my life. It’s what I’m dealing with. For me to tell you my hip hurts today, but other than that it’s a good day, that’s not a bad thing. Everything is on this large scale these days. It’s kind of like my big pain ruler. I judge it not only on how exhausted I am, but on how many body parts are hurting, and the level of pain they are in.

I need a graphics person to design that for me. I hope you all are having pain-free or low pain days. Have a great night!

Don’t Engage with the Nut Jobs


I need to just set a reminder to tell myself not to engage with the nut jobs on Facebook every other week. There is a lot going on in our small town and without boring you with the details we had two people running for First Selectman; one of them was caught the morning of the election stealing the other guy’s campaign signs, and then word got out a few days after the other one won the election that he declared bankruptcy and screwed town sports teams out of money with his former business. Kind of shady for someone who wants to control our town’s finances.

Anyway, if you’re not bored out of your mind already, our education budget was slashed from the proposed 4.4% increase to .75%, an increase that doesn’t even allow us to keep the current programming. So I watched people banter back and forth for the past few days without saying a word, but then some guy today said that it’s not the school’s responsibility to educate our kids, it’s the parents’ responsibility. While I’ll agree the parents are always responsible for staying on top of what their child is learning and teaching them at home, isn’t the school’s sole purpose to educate the students? Not according to this guy!

His wife is learning two different language so she can teach her kids. I’m sorry that I don’t have time to learn Mandarin. Perhaps I will take that up in all my spare time (the kind of time that doesn’t exist when you have three kids).

Perhaps I got all fired up because overall I felt very much like myself today. The pain and brain fog were nowhere near the level they were at last week — that’s a good thing! It’s been a while since I’ve felt good.

I know the cold weather in general is tougher for people with rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune issues including fibromyalgia and Raynaud’s. I was wondering if anyone changes their doses or meds in the warmer weather if you aren’t in as much pain. I’d love for you to share your experience or thoughts on that.

For me, it’s scary to think about being on the same med or combination of meds forever. I tend to feel better in the summer, and I hate to take something if I don’t need it as much, but is that doing more damage by not protecting my joints from the RA?

I have so many questions, but that’s my big one for the night. I hope some of my autoimmune friends can let me know what they do.