Mental Health Update: Facing the Highs & Lows

I’ve been MIA from blogging for almost two weeks now…I was going to write a post about my recent trip to Las Vegas for my youngest sister’s Anti-Bachelorette Party, but then my grandmother passed away last week and that took precedent.

During the past couple of weeks, I’ve been doing pretty well considering my last grandparent is now gone. I went to my first anxiety class/workshop the same day she passed away where I learned about cognitive distortions and how I typically fall into negative thinking and put myself (and others) into “should statements”—I should feel a certain way or ‘they’ shouldn’t do this or that. This is a common form of irrational thinking and I’m trying to make myself more aware of when I start having these types of thoughts. In the class we also did a little meditation and focused on our breathing. If our mind drifted, then we were told to ‘see’ the thought, ‘touch’ it (meaning listen to it briefly), and then return to focus on our breathing. I’ve really utilized this technique this past week when I’ve had a really sad thought; If I was doing something fun, or with my kids, but then my mind wandered to a memory of my grandma that made me sad, I’d allow myself to finish my thought, acknowledge it, and then return to what I was doing. I’ve also been taking Zoloft for a couple of weeks now, and I don’t feel like a different person or anything extreme like that, but I have noticed that I haven’t had any days where I’ve felt super low. I don’t go back to see my therapist until the end of February, but I’ve had a follow up appointment with the doctor who prescribed me the Zoloft and my sleeping pills (which I love! I don’t feel groggy in the morning and they are not habit forming). Talking about all that I’ve been going through, whether here on my blog or in therapy, has really helped me. Each time I talk about it it seems to become easier!

Another semi-big health related event I wanted to share is that I will be going back in for surgery in April. My OB is going to fix my incision and then while I’m already open, he’s going to take my tubes out. Yes, I have an IUD, and yes, it’s hard for be to get pregnant anyway, but oh my God…I don’t know what I’d do if I ever got pregnant again! I’m not taking any chances!! I am very nervous for this surgery. I mean, I want it because it’s just a mess down there and I don’t want to have to see it every day for the rest of my life, but I’m nervous about the healing process. What if it gets infected again? What if it pops open like last time? My only solace is that this time he will sew me closed on the outside, instead of just putting the surgical tape like they do nowadays with c-sections. I’m sure I’ll be fine, it’s normal to worry about a surgical procedure! 🙂

So I’ve had some highs and lows recently to say the least! I saw Britney Spears’ concert in Vegas (I’ve wanted to see her for years now and I can cross that off my list) and I had a really good time with my sisters there. My grandma passed away at the age of 89 in her sleep after some congestive heart failure. It’s been really rough on our family, and it’s the first death that my sisters and I have had to deal with as adults. We’ve been supporting our mom who was extremely close with Grandma—it’s never fun to grieve, obviously. Then, Chris and I got to take Oliver to Disneyland with some family from Chris’ side. We had a fabulous time, and Ollie got to ride some of the big kid rides! We’re navigating this thing called life, if I may be so cliched, and this is my path. I do believe that everything happens for a reason and that God doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle. I’ll question it from time to time, but I’m learning to accept it more graciously.

xx, Christine

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