I suffered from paralyzing anxiety, or in other words, hyper-vigilance. I was in a state of alert 24 hours a day, every day. Every little detail was blown out of proportion. I was constantly analysing, interpreting, evaluating risks. My mind never stopped, not even at night. My mind believed I and/or the people I live with were in constant danger.
My fiance had to be armed with a lot of love and patience. He got up in the middle of the night to look around the house every time I was convinced someone had broken in or was lurking outside. Even our dog was making several rounds a night, feeling my anxiety.
I had heart palpitations, all my fears were very real and imminent and paralysing. My life quickly became am an endless pit of darkness, until I sought help from my family doctor. It was one of the hardest things I had ever done.
The doctor kept his response light at our first meeting and sent me for blood tests. I originally thought he didn’t take me seriously and I was sent into another whirlwind of anxiety. The truth was he had seen more than I did. He had seen that my knee injury from months ago was taking forever to heal. He had listened to my heart and saw that it was beating much faster than a regular heart. He had seen my weight fluctuate. He had known my time of the month was a day max a month and knew about my hot flashes that started in my early 30’s. He had heard the anxiety and seen the depression. He didn’t want to worry me with any possible medical reason for all of this until he had his theory confirmed. I had Graves Disease, Hyperthyroidism and Thyroid Cancer. I am now being checked for Fibromyalgia.
I have now been taking medication for my mental illnesses and for my physical illnesses and although I still cry and I still worry, I am no longer constantly hyper-vigilant. I can still get into moments of panic, but a hug from my fiance works to calm me down as it wouldn’t have done in the past.