When anxiety and depression collide — Guest Post

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when anxiety and depression collide

This is a guest post, it is not written by me, but by a friend.  A friend who needs to get these thoughts out of her head and asked me if I would publish them on my blog for them.   If you can empathise with them I know your words of support would be welcome in the comments.

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I have seen images referencing the title of this blog post twice today on different social media platforms.  Maybe it is referenced all the time and it was only today that I noticed.  Perhaps we become more attuned to these things whilst they are actually happening in our own lives.

Today this is what happened to me.  I was hit full pelt with a massive burst of soul-sucking depression whilst simultaneously being struck with the most heart-exploding attack of anxiety.

How can two almost diametrically opposed conditions exist simultaneously within the same being? I have no clue, yet I know it to be true.

The whys and the wherefores are not for this post.  I don’t want to write about it.  Suffice to say there was just too much emotion.  Feelings that had been suppressed allowed to be released only to be replaced with similar almost instantaneously.  Truly, life is a bitch sometimes.  I think it was the all too fleeting momentary relief that might have kicked this off. That’s the bit that has seemed to floor me this time.

This isn’t new.  I have had periods at times of major stress when depression has wrapped me in it’s all too encompassing embrace.  I have stayed in bed, ignored the world, blacked out all and any media and, with some minor pharmaceutical interventions by amazing GPs have tunnelled through to the other side.  Mostly all the stronger for it.  I would hope more compassionate at least.

Yet I fear that it stalks me and I have come to view it as being my constant shadow.  Mostly unseen but when tipped in just slightly the wrong direction looms so much larger than my actual self, almost able to swallow me whole. Able to completely darken out the reality of my actually very good life, my strong marriage, my beautiful children, lovely home, great job and amazing family.

And today it re-appeared, accompanied by it’s not unfamiliar bedfellow, anxiety.

Only they don’t work effectively together.  Whilst one makes my heart, and brain, race so fast I fear they will never slow down.  So fast that only the fastest run or the heaviest dumbbells could ever make disappear, the other leaves me so utterly devoid of any energy it renders either solution entirely off limits.

Whilst one tells me the only solution is to rest, the other makes it entirely impossible for me to sleep.  It’s a constant battle between these two be it 2pm or 2am.  Nobody wins.  Nobody sleeps.

My heart and mind race whilst my body aches with exhaustion.

I pace the house without purpose unable to remain still, yet I yearn to just lie down.

I cannot focus on anything yet silence is deafening.  I carry either phone or laptop from room to room blasting out BBC news yet I could not tell you a single headline. I just need the noise.  The company that doesn’t require any form of interaction.

So here I am, at their command like a faithful puppet.  I know it will not always be this way.  I know there is another side and that I will reach it.

Just not today.

And to be honest I just needed to say all of this without actually having to say anything at all.

 Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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  • Been here done this will continue to do it over and over but as every cycle starts another ends. Hold on keep as long as you can nothing makes this better but hanging in there. I’m told this is an illness of the strong of mind who take so much you can’t take anymore. Keep hanging in there and please know you are not alone xx

    • Thank you so much. I’m sorry it’s not a better comment, I’m so automated but I am so pleased you finmente

  • Oh bless you, I have no words of wisdom but I know it is always good to keep talking and being really open and admitting how you are feeling. You are doing that and I’m proud of you. I’ll be praying for you to feel well and find peace very soon. Mich x

  • I hear you. Those two are also in my shadow, have been for many years. I should be able to give you sound advice, but to be honest I don’t know how I handle crappy low points like you’re describing, but somehow I get passed them.

    Big hugs to you.

  • I had a hideous bout of anxiety earlier this year. I have also become VERY good at hiding it and tend to wait these periods out until they are over.

    However, over the years, I have realised that stress is my biggest trigger so I try to do what I can to minimise that. Obviously, easier said than done! But, making small changes to my lifestyle really does seem to help. While I’m in the midst of an ‘attack’, I cut out caffeine, sugar, alcohol and gluten and this really does seem to work for me quite quickly. Fresh air, walks and gentle stretches also make a difference. It’s a scary, lonely and exhausting place to be. You will get to the other side but until then, it is good to keep talking. Keep telling people. Know you can come here and we will all be here too x

  • Darling Girl, I feel your pain. I seem to be swaddled alternately in one or the other at present. The two combined would finish me off. Know that I am thinking of you x

  • So sorry that you are dealing with this. I don’t know what else to say, but I hear you.

  • Been there several times in my longish life. Have made plans for awful things but never followed through.
    Good friends to talk to – essential AND v valuable!
    Walks in the fresh air – ditto
    Feeding ducks etc. – ditto
    I even found weeding in the garden ENJOYABLE!
    Do not surrender. “nil illegitimae carborundum!”