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Drowning Under the Numbness

by Rose
(CT)

Recently, I went through a very stressful period in my life where I had to learn to keep my anxiety in check, and I thought I had gotten the hang of it. Suddenly I didn't feel it anymore and that was great. Until one day I noticed I felt nothing at all. Then very suddenly, I just panicked. One minute I was running and the next, I wasn't breathing and my head was exploding.
Currently I am in an extremely stressful environment, its not boot camp (where I was before) but its just as stressful in different ways. I've noticed the more I put my emotions away (what I thought was the right way to handle anxiety)the stranger my life got. I don't feel anything until I freak out. I also can't remember anything that I study and I'm failing half of my classes. Its like my brain just can't make the connections necessary for me to learn. I researched a little bit and came across something that said numbness is a symptom of anxiety that has a positive reinforcement (similar to contractions in childbirth: the more you have them, the more are triggered and at worse intensity). I don't feel happy or sad, I don't miss anyone at home that I left for school, I don't feel love towards the man I was in love with anymore. I don't have any need to talk to my friends from home. This is how my life is until sudden and random waves of emotion knock me out of the way. I begin to feel everything, but mostly the hurt I've bottled. The interesting thing is that when this happens, I am shaky in school but I actually do better with the material as the professors teach. Right now, I am so incapable of retaining anything that I have a 1.24 GPA... I used to be an A student.
I know any person would say I need help, and this is me acknowledging that I do need it. I'm tired of this controlling me. However, my schedule does not permit for any allotted time to seek help. So my question is, based on what I've shared: how can I begin to change the way I handle my life on a day to day basis? Please help me to deal with my emotions in a healthy way, so I can start learning again.

Comments for Drowning Under the Numbness

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Nov 19, 2014
re: drowing under the numbness
by: Susan

Hi Rose! First and foremost... it is important to see a therapist if you think that is what you need. Although Self-help methods do work when applied... sometimes we need the help of a qualified professional to help us, and there is nothing wrong with that.

I would suggest that you take time each day to journal your feelings. Recovering from anxiety, panic & depression are not things that we need to run from. Hiding our feelings, stuffing them down so we don't feel will only make things worse in the long run. What you need to do is be in touch with your thoughts and feelings on a daily basis. It is only through this that you will see exactly what is going on inside of you so that you can apply some skills that will make things better. Journaling your thoughts and feelings every evening before bed is a good way to start getting in touch with yourself again.

Once you get the hang of journaling and you are ready... You can then rewrite your thoughts with a positive perspective.

This helps you get into the habit of being in touch with yourself, but also helping you stay grounded in reality and optimism, instead of hopelessness.

I want to say, Congrats on coming to terms with your struggles. It is hard to face the fact that perhaps maybe we need help! :) Keep the faith!

~ Susan

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