Light within

A while ago my intense anxiety exploded into a full blown panic disorder. I would wake up with my chest aching, my heart pounding. Any decision or stress would send me spiraling into panic: numbness, hot flashes, sweat, rash, jitters, and the sense that something terrible was about to happen. My chest felt like it would explode. Every morning I would say to Beau, “I can’t shake it, I can’t shake it, Beau. I’m really not well.”

But I was still saying to myself and others, “I’m just overwhelmed. I just need to cut some things out, stop seeing so many people.”

But deep down I knew it was more. And cutting things out became everything. And seeing less people became everyone. And the boys became a burden instead of the treasure that they are. And I knew it would only get worse.

I painted this painting the day I finally went in to get help.

I felt like I was accepting defeat, but I kept hearing God say I was only sprouting wings. Accepting and allowing change.

“And the day came when the risk to remain right in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

On the first day without any chest pain I found this little Geometer moth. And the sunset had wings.
20140703-121010-43810642.jpgThat was only a couple of days ago, and my heart is pounding and my face is going numb writing this, but I wanted to make a truthful declaration here. My life is not all beauty, though there is beauty in darkness…it is real, and a journey, and much of the light that is to come is cocooned waiting to come out. I want to try my best to let it, and I want to encourage others to be brave and do the same. 20140703-121011-43811194.jpg

12 thoughts on “Light within

  1. Oh, anxiety, how I loathe it. I experienced really bad postpartum anxiety after my third where the low-level anxiety I’ve lived with morphed into a tyrant. So so sorry you are in the thick of it and hope that you can continue holding hard to those bright spots. I’m learning that for me the anxiety has been the physical manifestation of deep stuff of the soul – and is slowly becoming an opportunity for transformation. Trust yourself. Courage, M

  2. Believe me, you are not alone. It hits us at all different stages of life, but with the help of Beau and all your many friends you’ll come through this like the beautiful butterfly you are.

  3. Thank you for that Marissa. So much encouragement is found when someone says, “me too.” Comrades!

  4. I too live with anxiety disorder. I made the decision to not let it rule my life. I recognize the creeping thing trying to destroy my life and do whatever I have to to come out of its clutches. I got help and now I function with only the occasional episode. You can too, Bridget. You are a beautiful soul. Let’s keep our gardens growing.

  5. You are brave, and beautiful.
    i love you! i love that you share with us… I love that in the midst of darkness there is an effervescent light. Hope. Praying for you today, friend.

  6. Oh, Bridget, I love you! I’m so glad you’re getting help. We all need it, even if it’s not all for the same things or at the same time. Going to therapy and anti-depressants/anxiety pills have changed my life. Whatever kind of help you’re getting, I hope it helps you feel like the ‘best version of yourself’ (knowing that term could be interpreted all kinds of ways–but I mean it with the most heart-full intent).

  7. Thank you for saying that, Maryann! I completely know what you mean by “the best version of myself.” I’m trying hard to look at this as if I had a broken arm that needed to be fixed. I would take pain meds and get a cast and physical therapy for something like that…and that’s basically what I’m doing with my mind so I can have it work well, maybe even better, when this is through. Love you too!

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