This past week I’ve felt very on edge, well more than I usually do I guess you could say.
I am feeling more nervous than usual, more tense, more angry and very uneasy.
Today the build up led to a panic attack right in the middle of my morning aqua fit class.
I love my aqua fit classes. I look so forward to it twice a week.
They are such a wonderful and positive distraction for me.
I work my butt off in class and I feel such a great accomplishment afterwards but today, given the week I’ve had, I just couldn’t seem to distract myself.
I tried to quietly slip out of the pool so not to make a scene as the panic erupted (it’s not like I’ve never made a scene before though!).
I felt the tears fill my eyes and I could barely breathe. Figuratively, I felt like I was drowning.
I just needed a moment to myself.
I reassured everyone I was ok (quietly slipping out of the pool didn’t work).
I wiped my tears away with my towel, took a few deep breaths, a big swig of water from my water bottle and then before I slipped back into the pool I double checked my phone to reassure myself one last time that the world wasn’t about to end.
Yesterday morning I went to an aqua fit class which I have been doing very regularly throughout the summer months, but until yesterday I hadn’t been to class for a couple of weeks. It was to be one of our last classes of the season and afterwards we were invited to stay for the afternoon relaxing by the pool, enjoying each other’s company and feasting on a delicious catered lunch hosted by my friend whose pool we have so graciously been using all summer long.
There was a chill in the air yesterday morning, something we hadn’t felt before then but it is September after all and to be expected. I wasn’t sure when I awoke yesterday morning if I could find the strength to push myself to get to the class at all as I had not had a good night the evening before; and knowing just how crisp the air felt, I lay in bed filled with anxiety, curled up under my weighted blanket until about 20 minutes before class was to begin, telling myself all the reasons I shouldn’t go. It’s not like this was anything new to me, I go through this crazy babble and negative self-talk every single time I leave my home, even when it’s something I know I will likely enjoy.
Well I made it to class as you already know even though I was a few minutes late and when I arrived everyone was in the pool warming up but I took my time to ensure the best and most successful outcome. I slowly and cautiously approached the water and then I gently dipped my toe in the water (as though it was my first time ever getting into a pool) to check the temperature.
We’ve all heard the saying “Dip your toe in the water” before and yesterday I both literally and figuratively did just that. I more often than not have to tread very lightly in everything I do because I can (and do) easily get overwhelmed and become very vulnerable whenever I try and push myself too much or take on too much all at once which just winds up sabotaging my health and wellness further. Some days may be easier than others to push through my depression and anxiety (but not lately) and having learned the art of how to fake it til I make it or smile through my pain can sometimes give me the strength to “dive right in” like I did yesterday (thanks also to Jenn for making the water super warm).
Today’s #summerofrich adventure was quite the adventure. We headed to a trail near Port Perry and when we got there it was closed (the website gave no indication that it was closed), so we went to another trail a bit further away; and guess what? it was closed too! (Again no mention of it on their website; but it was under construction).
By this point we figured since we had come all that way we might as well venture to yet one more trail (I mean what are the chances it would be closed too!). Thankfully it was not; Yahoo!!! As we reached the start of the trail we saw a sign that read (in pics) “beware of bears”! Ya well who doesn’t like to be a bit “risque” sometimes so off we went into the forest, but with every step we took we started to get more and more nervous (well Rich did lol) which was only about 5 minutes into our hike.
There were no other hikers in sight (maybe they had already been eaten by a bear) and we tried hard to ignore every rustling sound coming from the woods but THEN we came upon piles and piles of bear poop (Don’t worry I saved you from any pics!). So it was at that very moment that we hightailed it out of there and back to safety!
It looks like a hike just wasn’t in the cards for us today (good thing I did an aqua fit class this morning) and instead we headed to Port Perry’s Main Street and walked along the Pier and did some window shopping instead (that’s pretty mindful in my opinion, wouldn’t you agree?) which is where our adventure continued.
Once we had enough window shopping we decided to grab a quick bite to eat on a patio close to the water which was also our first time doing so since patios opened back up. We placed our order and THEN came the lightening, the thunder and soon followed by a terrestrial downpour!
Luckily the umbrella over the picnic table kept us pretty dry for most of the time (and it was too late to make it back to the car anyways), but then the wind turned directions and we were getting soaked!
You can’t fault us for trying today, it was certainly a memorable day and nothing a big scoop of peanut butter and chocolate ice cream from one of the local shops couldn’t fix.
Yesterday I went to a one hour aqua fit class in the morning followed by a 2.5 hour walk later on and finished my day off with a warm and very soothing bubble bath.
My brain is always working in overdrive and I am easily overwhelmed by the simplest of tasks while desperately trying to get through my never-ending “to-do-list”. Even thinking about all the things I need to get done or would like to achieve and then don’t, completely depletes my already less than empty “mental gas tank”.
Mental fatigue is real and the more that things seem to escalate in my life right now, the less able I am to take a pause from reality which then causes me to become totally incapable of much. The overwhelm takes my mind to a whole other place and I become paralyzed with fear and emotionally drained.
Being mentally exhausted often goes hand in hand with extreme and ongoing levels of stress in one’s life which I find I am so easily distracted by and extremely anxious about and very quickly will turn into procrastination.
Procrastination comes from a Latin term which translates to “for tomorrow” and very often I find myself taking my “to-do-list” and moving it over to tomorrow in my calendar. Yesterday was no exception, but is taking a “Me” day really considered procrastination?
What is one thing you find you procrastinate most about?
I went to an aqua fit class this morning at my friend’s pool. I haven’t done aqua fitness in probably two years now which was also something I used to do on a pretty regular basis some 20 years ago.
I love swimming (in a nice heated pool which it was!) but I especially love aqua fitness because you can still reap so many of the benefits of a good workout without having to really break a sweat.
Exercising is not something I truly enjoy but for some reason I love aqua fitness or going for a challenging hike or taking a long walk but when I do any type of exercise at all it’s always best at my own pace and on my own terms because otherwise it will become a surefire way to further compromise my mental health.
I have learned how to adapt to many things along my journey (fake it til you make it) and every day I continue to work on knowing just how far I can push through many of my limitations meaning that on some days I am able to stay and battle it out for a little bit longer while on other days I may have to take a step back and try to fight again on another day.
I think this was exactly what Kenny Rogers was trying to tell us some 40 years ago when he wrote the lyrics to his classic song “The Gambler” because some days “you’ve got to know when to hold ’em” and on other days, “know when to fold ’em.”
I was really looking forward to going to the class this morning even though up until a half an hour before I was to be there I was still having to push myself to go and was all ready to “fold ’em” and try again another day but I was able to “hold ’em” just long enough to push through (and glad I could), but if next time I need to “fold em” at least I know I can try to fight again another day.
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