Anxiety: The Battle of Control
Anxiety can sometimes get the best of me. At times, I am not able to control it or know how to deal with it. It's like this rush feeling that starts to occur inside of me and I have no idea on how to make stop it. The feelings I get are indescribable. Its as if my heart is about to come out of my chest. My mind goes blank and I start to shake from the nerves. My palms get sweaty and my breathing gets heavy. I get this mild dizziness that doesn’t allow me to focus.
I don't recall the first time it happened, but I believe it all began when I was dating my high school sweetheart and found out he was cheating on me. I realized that this time I felt different. I handled things differently. I gathered my thoughts but this time I had an overwhelming numbing sensation. In addition to all the other symptoms, I also felt as if this was the first time my body was physically reacting to stress.
The following situation when I realize I had anxiety attacks was at my last job. I had a tough team and everything seemed to be falling apart. Every morning, I would get harassing text messages from my boss. It wasn’t even work hours and I would get text messages of questions and accusations of matters that were not that important. It put me under a lot of stress and again the feeling of things getting out of control returned. It use to get really bad to the point where I would have to remove myself from the whatever situation I was in and go get some fresh air.
I’ve learned from these situations because I tend to be a control freak and whenever things occur that I am not able to control - I freak out and overact, leading to an anxiety attack. This was my trigger and it honestly was how I learned to control it or at least work with it. Once you know what causes the attacks you learn how to respond to the signs before an actual attack occurs.
I remember telling my mother and grandmother about it and they were both very supportive, maybe because they were familiar with it but typical Dominicans, they don't speak of these matters. They did suggest that I needed to relax and calm down but easier said than done. At work, my supervisor will either tell me to go for walk or give me an anxiety pill as this was common in our job field. Anxiety could have probably been added as a skill on our resumes.
With time, I’ve learned how to relax myself by venting to others, especially to those I feel comfortable around. I also go for walks when I feel things getting hectic. One time during one of my regular doctor checkups, I asked my doctor for anxiety pills. She agreed to give them to me, but made sure it was a low dose. For extreme times like busy work weeks or when I feel my emotions are a little out of whack, I take my medication. I am careful to not become addicted to them but when needed I take one to calm me down. They give me a high and this sense of calmness that can be dangerous at times. Is too good of a feeling. I have also learned that not all situations require a reaction.
Fast forward to present day, my anxiety attacks have decreased and this is the happiest I ever been. It feels good to be stress free and be in control of my emotions. The anxiety pills are no longer needed. At the end of the day, it's mind over matter.