May 16th: Anxiety, Stress, and Fear

May 16th-Anxiety

When I was going through my separation and ultimately… my divorce, I often found myself overwhelmed by anxiety, stress, and fear.

The lack of control I had in regards to the end of my relationship was putting me in a constant state of agitation.

I went back-and-forth between “fight” or “flight” either engaging in arguments with my husband in order to have any type of interaction with him and find a way to feel powerful or, I would hide from him… from the demise of our marriage by basically living in my bedroom, and self-soothing with movies and comfort food.

Unfortunately… these coping mechanisms were only adding to my anxiety, stress, and fear.

If I engaged in an argument, I berated myself for my lack of spiritual fortitude and if I hid and self-soothed, I berated myself for my lack of will-power.

It was a never ending shame spiral that intensified my fear.

Out of balance, emotionally  worn, physically out of shape and tired, I was falling deeper into depression.

With the help of good friends and kind mentors, I learned that these behaviors did not suit my needs.

I learned that the best way to conquer my anxiety, stress, and fear was to take care of my emotional and physical well-being even when it was the last thing I wanted to do.

I thought of my children… and imagined what I would say… or do for them…. if they were suffering.

I held that image firm in my mind as I began to take better care of myself through, spiritual footwork, healthy nutrition, and daily exercise.

Each of these three things began to work in my favor, turn the tide of my despair, and send me moving forward.

I found that my stress and anxiety began to slowly dissipate as I put more effort into my well-being and less thought into my fear.

“Dear God, help me to take care of myself when I am struggling. Help me to find comfort through healthy means.”

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10 thoughts on “May 16th: Anxiety, Stress, and Fear

  1. I was in a similar state the last few years of my marriage. I had fear to discuss ending it, didn’t know what I’d do if I did, and instead took the road of pain– trying to fix things.
    The financial, mental, & emotional and pressure compounded, and I literally neglected my health.
    It was so depressing and costly.

    I’m well on the way to mending but the strange thing is, I don’t feel afraid anymore, but I wake each day with great anxiousness.

    I suspect it’s part of the healing as I’m still in that mode of moving forward but the brain still registers that wow remember you’re in your own!

    • In the beginning, Patricia, I used to wake up each morning and actually dry-heave over the side of the bed into the trashcan… I was so wound-up going through my divorce and so anxious about each day… it was part of the healing process for me… and did end, thankfully. The more time that went by… the more competent I began to feel, and the more I realized I had really been doing things mostly on my own for quite a long time… I calmed down. 🙂

  2. Thanks D
    Keep coming around to “time is the healer”.
    Family & friends listen, watch, and somehow know this.
    They see progress I don’t feel or see in many ways.
    Yet I’ve noticed , coming up on the first full year of separation, that the “high-pitched” emotions and related chatter is quieter.
    My ex brags about his luck. But many of us know what’s real.
    But more than that, I’m finding that I really can’t be bothered with his business as usual “ain’t things great” stuff.
    That’s probably time healing my mind too!
    Anxiety about what feels so new is scary but better than last year’s hell.

    • Yes… exactly….. anyone with a humble heart wouldn’t be “bragging” when he knew that the people who loved and cared for him were still hurting…. it will be interesting to see how that plays out… but you are right… you can’t be bothered with his business because you are too busy moving on in your life! 😀

  3. In fact just moments ago got a message that there will be a major family gathering in a couple of weeks… Obviously I won’t be part of it and will send a card. Having been with my ex when I was so young these people are my extended family, yet I can’t participate now because someone has “taken that spot”.
    There are so many adjustments and surprises about emotions in all this. It’s such a roller coaster ride.
    Talk about keeping the waste basket nearby… It made my stomach do loops.

    • I was talking about a similar situation with my significant other’s teenage daughter… it’s funny how young people can say it so right sometimes…. she was lamenting the changes in some of her friendships from middle school to high school… how the group doesn’t hang out with her any more… and I said, “Do you wanna hang out with them still?” and she said, “No, I don’t really want to hang out with them, we’ve grown apart, but I still want to be asked.” I just started laughing… that’s how I felt exactly. But that old life does not suit me well anymore…

      If you are close to his family… I’m sure you will find a way, in time, to make it work so that you can spend quality time with them… and if you didn’t really care that much… it’s an easy out! 🙂 D.

  4. You’re right!!
    It’s hard not to be invited and included! Hadn’t hit this challenge until now.
    But I wouldn’t and couldn’t be there under the circumstances anyway.
    I do have close relationships in the family that may end up enduring through time, and ultimately, it was kind to forewarn me so I wouldn’t run into a painful situation.
    It will be interesting to see how (and if) some of us do stay in touch now/ future.

  5. Interesting , last fall I saw all the “family” , because I traveled there, and even took the big crew to dinner .
    It was great , but I realized it actually felt like closure … Not readjustment of being family .
    It was a natural event when I look at it now. Even though I was so close to my nieces and might be of help to them.
    Other than hi , love you , etc on fb here and there … Not another word .
    I actually felt relief to let go.
    We just have to reconcile the past with what is now .

  6. Yes… exactly… you gave your ex the opportunity to step up, Patricia… he just chose not to take that path… you are released from your commitment and if the nieces need you… they will reach out… if that is part of your journey! big BIG hug, D.

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