I have suffered from this my whole life. It's not exactly anxiety, not exactly depression. I remember in 7th grade going to a peer support group for kids having a tough time. I told the counselor how I feel a tightness in my stomach almost all the time. I get irritable, grumpy, and snappy. It's really bad around the PMS time but it's there almost on a daily basis. It steals the joy from my life and often spills over to affect my loved ones. If my buttons are pushed during this time I can get super angry and yell. Most of the time my husband is the focus of this. Clearly I can control the yelling part because I seldom yell at my kids. (To be fair, dh has been the source of a lot of pain and breaking of trust over the years but he doesn't deserve my angry outbursts. I should rise above that behavior.)
When my dd2 was very small things got overwhelming. She had a lot of medical problems, and my dd1 was very spirited and challenging, and dh was not emotionally around. I started taking a mild anti-depressant. The knot in my stomach went away! It was liberating. But then so did my intense feelings of spirituality, love, joy and humor. It numbed me somewhat. I made it through her health problems, nursing school, and first year as a nurse on the meds. I finally decided to wean off because I was not ever suicidal-depressed. The meds were making my brain too foggy and I needed to be sharp and alert at work-- I work with very sick peds patients.
I weaned off about 9 months ago. I am functional and my brain is sharper and I am feeling more. But that darned tight feeling is back in my stomach and the flares of anger/hurt/irritation/tension is back.
How do I get rid of this? I know and practice relaxation, exercise, and all that. But in the heat of the moment when I am in the grocery store or the car or can't sit down and find that quiet place, how do I relax myself inside and get rid of that tight feeling?
Thank you. :-) Maybe no one can relate? I have had a good week. I have been carrying a worry stone that has sentimental value to me in my pocket, and I just rub it sometimes and it is allowing me to focus on relaxing. I would love to have other suggestions though.
Have you tried yoga? I just started a Gentle Yoga class and it has been wonderful. Also, meditating 10 minutes a day seems to help me.
Years ago I was also on anti-depressants. It. Was. Wonderful. I smiled ALL the time. It felt good to be on something that took the edge off...and I just wasn't angry about anything anymore. A few years later I decided to make some changes. I took charge of my life and ditched my MD for a naturopath. The naturopath discovered that I was having some food intolerance and that I was anemic. As I removed the offending foods from my diet and corrected the anemia, it was then that I decided to quit Zoloft. It took several months to wean off of it.
Since then I have checked in a few times with a therapist. I've done more than my fair share of reading self-help books and online research to help myself feel better, too. What I learned was that I matter as a human being. But, the only person that could be my biggest cheer leader had to be myself.
I like the worry stone idea. Other things that are great tension relievers are walks outside....rain or shine. I love my rain pants. Pets are also amazing tension relievers...
Hope this helps. (((Lots of hugs.)))
Pepin, thank you so much for taking the time to reply and sharing your story. Yoga! I used to practice yoga when I was ttcing #1, who is now almost 13. For some reason I completely forgot about yoga. I was never that great at it but it did help me focus and took away my tension, and may have helped me to become pregnant finally. I will get out my yoga book and get a routine going again. I think it will help me too, when I am awake for half the night on my nights off (I work 12 hour night shifts at a hospital) and the rest of the family is sleeping and I am lonely.
I think I will dig out the incense and light it while I stretch, too. Thanks again. :-)