Stress Response

Do you know what your stress response is?  I’m talking about your Huge Events stress response.  Or your Lots Of Big Events All At Once stress response.

I once believed that I was highly capable of dealing with stress, that I was good at compartmentalizing and doing what needed to be done, moving forward, keeping my head screwed on straight.  In fact, there was that one year where Ray was so injured he couldn’t walk, I had just been hospitalized and then diagnosed with a heart condition and I was moving into Ray’s house while Kyle was moving out.  I actually handled that one fairly well.  Went to work every day, came home, cooked, dog walked, gym’ed, took care of Ray while his injury and my illness went on for nearly a year.

Then last year I had the car accident that totaled my vehicle and injured me.  And?  I completely shut down.  While, yes, I was hurt, I was also so emotionally and mentally crushed that I couldn’t leave the house.  For two weeks.  And I stopped eating.  Me, the person who eats All The Time, just stopped.  It got to the point where Ray would have me text him a video of what I was having for lunch so that he could check up on me.  I ended up having to get sleeping pills and anxiety medication just to get through the day.  When it had all blown over, Ray told me that he was surprised that I handled it so poorly.  Honestly, my feelings were hurt because here I was, the person who takes care of absolutely everything, took a unintentioned hiatus from sanity/rationality/life for two weeks and he dissed me for it.    He was right though…………I handled it like crap.

In the time that has come after, I’ve worked on relaxing, deep breathing when upset, logical self chatter and better compartmentalizing.

Yesterday morning my boss told me she’s quitting, the company has walked away from bargaining/mediation with the union and are about to give 72 hours strike notice, the HR manager of the company told my boss too bad for me that I’m going to have to cross my husband’s picket line, I’ll have to “figure out how to deal with it”.  My grampa is ailing, we’re going to be completely broke, I still have a car accident to settle (which I cannot afford to pay for if it does not come out in my favour) and we’re looking at official work stoppage at the end of this week. 

Cue the shortness of breath, lack of appetite, consistent vomit-feeling, chest pressure and blank-brain.  I really need to pull my shit together; Ray and I are our own little island as far as this goes and I can’t be expecting him to take care of me because this time?  We’re up the same creek at the same time.  In order to “pull my shit together” I’m trying to immerse myself into my job to pass the time and distract myself…..however all the work that I’m up to my ears in is to ultimately make my hubby’s job (and that of the 80 other employees on strike) obsolete.  I’m feeling incredibly conflicted at the moment.  Nauseated, headache, emotional, stressed, angry, overwhelmed, annoyed.

Last night I was awake from 11pm until about 3:30pm dissecting things.  Things that are unknown or assumed or that I can’t do anything about.  Around 2am I decided that I wanted to go to the gym and I really should have, it would have been more productive than laying in bed stressing myself to vomit status.  The stupid thing is that I had so much anxiety over going outside in the dark, having to talk to the front-desk-gym-guy (who I actually do quite like), what would happen if Ray woke up in the night and I wasn’t there.  All of that was swirling around with everything else and I ended up just laying there for hours.

I realize that there’s probably no rhyme to this post and part of it probably sounds like whining/pissing & moaning….but it is what’s going on and that’s what my blog has always been about; balancing healthy with reality.  Well…reality has stormed the fort, big time right now………I’m just trying not to let go of the “healthy” part!

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