Oh the anxiety

So I had planned to do part two of the DSM-V eating disorders series, but that got sidelined by a massive bout of anxiety. I can't think straight. I can hardly sit still. I have chewed my nails into nubbins (not that there was a lot for me to chew, but somehow I managed).

I have a lot of uncertainties in my life: if I'm going to be able to make a go at being a writer, if financially everything will work out, if I'm ever going to be free of this ED, if if if if if.

I hate "if". Tell me "when." Now would be nice.

I spent much of the evening working on my writing projects and getting nothing accomplished because my brain kept zooming from one worry to the next. I eventually gave up and flipped through my newest National Geographic.

In some sense, I'm tolerating the anxiety because I haven't completely imploded. In another sense, I want to just crawl out of my own skin. My mom asked if there was anything she could do to help with the anxiety. I looked at her and said: "Could you get me a treadmill?" It's not even the burning calories part that's attractive--that frenetic movement seemed to exhaust my brain so that it was almost impossible to worry so much. And during exercise, my brain shut off completely.

So I'm going to go try and get some sleep and hope that everything works out.

posted under |


mariposai said...

A good night's sleep can fix anything ;) Hope you feel better in the morning!

Jennifer said...

Carrie,its Jennifer -believe me, i empathise!!
This morning my body and mind kicked into "high-alert-anxious-keyed up-hypo mode" - seemingly for no reason ie.no reason at that exact moment (there are a myriad of reasons for constant stress,day to day)and despite my best attempts,slowing my breathing,relaxing my muscles,calming my mind,visualising etc etc, i just COULD NOT get rid of the heightened anxiety that made me feel like i was going to explode from my body and mind!!
It is sooofrustrating,as it makes work impossible,it makes even a simple CONVERSATION impossible as, how do you latch onto ONE train of thought when there are a zillion flooding your mind!!
I hope to sleep looong,restfully and peacefully tonight and hope you do too!!

Libby said...


Sarah said...

This happens to me sometimes, too! The thing I have found to be the best is to take some deep breaths, take a walk, do a Pilates DVD (the rhythmic, fast-paced movements give me my "endorphin" fix but the concentration needed helps me to chill out at the same time,) drink some tea and watch a cheesy TV show or a favorite movie, or read a chick lit book in the bathtub with a glass of wine.

I think you used some really good coping strategies here, by telling yourself that work was not going to be a good idea with the state you were in, telling someone about your anxiety, being honest about your desire for exercise, blogging, and deciding to go to sleep instead of do something destructive to yourself.

Sometimes it's just not a good night to get work done. It doesn't mean you will never be able to concentrate; it doesn't mean you should rule out a career. It just means that your body and mind are keyed up that night and need some TLC.

-From a fellow anxious black and white thinker :)

Abby said...

This too shall pass...or so they say. Honestly, this is pretty much exactly where I am right now. No matter how much I use "healthy" coping strategies, it feels like putting a band-aid on a bursting dam. I don't want to paint, I don't want to think, I want to exercise and numb so I don't have to be in the "now," to sit with these feelings and try to "fix" them.

However, I suppose (we) have to sit with it--a withdrawl process of sorts that leaves us uncomfortable in our own skin, our own thoughts, our own untrusting bodies? This too shall pass, and I hope today is better for you and you can find some peace.

Katie said...

I'm sorry you're feeling so anxious, I really sympathise! Sometimes trying to stay calm feels like a losing battle. I usually find that if I can think of a reason why things are so hard that day (it usually comes down to hormones for me, ugh) I don't get quite so caught up in it. But of course that's not ideal because when there's no logical reason for it I freak out! I really hope you feel better soon Carrie, I'm thinking of you.

Kim said...

I have periods of this type of anxiety, when I get carried away wondering what's next, if I'll be okay financially/emotionally/physically/etc. It's like my mind is constantly busy making lists of potential tragedies that could befall me. It really work out! I freelanced for about a year and I did have a lot of anxiety about my next assignment. Next, next, next. I chose to go back to a regular job, and then I got laid off...ha. So, ya, job security is really an illusion even if you do the traditional job with a predictable paycheck. I don't say that to be depressing, but to reiterate that working always carries with it some anxiety and, when it comes down to it, you are resourceful and you will be just fine. I struggle a lot with trusting this, even though life has always proven it's true!
Hope you got some sleep!

Lauren said...

Hi Carrie, My name is Lauren and I am currently starting a blog for one of my university classes about eating disorders, and their effect on the mind and body. I am interested in getting some guest bloggers to write a post about their experiences. It can be anonymous, or have a link back to your blog if you would like. If you are interested if you could send me an email at be_ej@hotmail.com that would be great. Thanks! :)

Jay said...

Does the anxiety ever go away?

I'm new to therapy so I hardly know up from down, but it seems like the key is learning to live with bad feelings because, no, they don't go away. Is that right?

In the comments above, Abby mentioned "sitting with it." My therapists have used the same term. Sometimes sitting with it means literally sitting still, and sometimes it means waling, or writing, or whatever lets you feel your feelings without being overrun by them.

Anyway, it seems like you handled it as smoothly as possible. Best to you.

Jay said...


Abby said...

I came across this article and found it interesting, seeing as the last DSM discussion here was great.


Cammy said...

Sorry you're in a tough spot, remember that what goes up must come down, and riding out the anxiety is one of those unfortunate parts of recovery. But you can do it! Just checking in to see how you're doing, hope you had a restful night.

Cathy (UK) said...

Hi Carrie

I'm really behind with reading posts, e-mails etc., but I just wanted to send you my best wishes and hope your anxiety has blown over...

I know what it's like, and I totally understand the urge/desire to exercise to relieve anxiety.

Take care


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I felt like that just yesterday. I was so anxious that I could not think, I could not sit still, and it got worse when my head was buzzing and my heart beating for fast for the whole day, when I realised that it was going to affect me finishing up my studies. As much as I pray for it to calm down. I must say I am very much jealous of my friends who can take things with ease.

Post a Comment

Newer Post Older Post Home

ED Bites on Facebook!

ED Bites is on Twitter!

Search ED Bites

About Me

My photo
I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.

Drop me a line!

Have any questions or comments about this blog? Feel free to email me at carrie@edbites.com

nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote


Popular Posts


Recent Comments