Tag Archives: panic attacks

New Monday List!

Okay, this is a restart of my 6-5 list idea. This is the six things on Mon and 5 each Tues – Fri, and catch up on the weekends notion.

Also I will redo the larger, long-term “to do” list sometime this week.

This will make THREE chore lists! The backlogged 6-5 lists, the current 6-5 lists, and the long-term list. Either I’ll just get overwhelmed and quit, again, or I’ll get it done.

What’s really likely is that I’ll get some of it done, for a while, then get overwhelmed and quit. That’s my pattern problem. Somehow, being organized about getting things done eventually leans on the PTSD and I panic and stop. Since many folk seem to get overwhelmed  I guess I don’t feel so bad about not being able to stick to it.

This blog has been a many-year long set of experiments to get me to be able to set a goal then get to it, ‘eh? A tidy house doesn’t seem to make most people panic like it does me, it makes them feel good. It makes me feel good too, but if I do it too consistently? I panic.

The problem has always been the panic. It took me until I was in my mid-50s to be well enough otherwise (not hurting/running scared) to be able to see that what happens to me in a tidy house is panic, and that because of that, it is instantly overwhelming. Telling me “ignore it,” [I can’t tell you how many people have said that to me!] is really useless. Telling myself that is equally useless.

The only real answer has been to find ways to turn tidying into habit, so that I don’t think about it, I just do it. Fine. Except that the process of doing that causes me to panic too — and the rat wheel goes around — again.

So. Here I am, again. With another shot at it, again.

Monday’s 6:

  1. File something. 5:11 p.m.
  2. Clean the front of the kitchen cabinet that hasn’t been cleaned the longest (I put stickies in the drawers/cabinets that tell me when I cleaned them last.) 6:30 p.m.
  3. Clean the cat food bin. 10:28 p.m.
  4. Straighten an underwear drawer. 10:20 p.m.
  5. (fill in). Bathroom floor & counter clean up. 1:40 p.m.
  6. Get the planner started.
Advertisements

Flow or No

Whether it is because of the PTSD or otherwise, I tend to work in spurts or fits and starts. I keep thinking I should just be able to schedule something for a few hours, I can, but mostly don’t.

I need to accept that the abuse, panic attacks, and PTSD all make a regular schedule very difficult, if not impossible, as much as I’d like otherwise.

I need to stop fighting this and just accept it as the way I flow, period. I think when/if I can do that, the panic attacks or vestiges of them will lessen dramatically. It’s my belief that the panic is due largely to people being able to “see” what I’m doing or have done. I have a lot fewer problems, like nearly none, when I’m working for other people. This is only the stuff I do at home.
fits & starts2
Can I repeat, again, how much I really, absolutely hate the woman who abused me? It totally sucks to have your brain be your main enemy. It sucks more to view any finished project as something which will be attacked, belittled, or sneered at, whether it’s a clean kitchen counter or an art work. This just makes getting anything done a real challenge. [And I needed more of those, right?]

P.S. Reading this, I realized t’s wrong. I don’t hate her. I hate what she did to my brain. If it wasn’t that no matter how much work I do, this will be with me forever, I would have very few feelings about here at all.

She’s gone, her daughter is gone. The memories of what she did just make me feel sorrty: for her that she could be so nasty, her daughter and myself because she felt it necessary to emotionally attack two innocent little girls,, who grew to be wounded women because of it. It was just a waste.

Soooo Bizarre!

It just occurred to me that I haven’t panicked about the house. I won’t go back and look for how long, but here I am, whaling away at the painting, thinking about culling, nearly every.single. day. And no panic?

NO PANIC????

Not that I want to panic mind you, but it’s just really, really weird if you’re me.

Part of this is that I’ve tied it to the living room painting project I think. But part of it seems to be that I may have healed enough?

panic

And of course, the “gotcha” with my PTSD is that having noticed this, and having had the audacity to say it OUT LOUD?

Now I’ll panic!

 

Waiting for the Shoe

The shoe? You know, the one that drops.

 

shoes

 

In short, I’m waiting for the panic attacks to start, again. I’ve been working on the cleaning plan, working on the memoir, working on the garden. None of it full bore, none of it to completion. . . but the house/yard is neater. The memoir retype is sloooowly getting done. Things are being worked on, sometimes in an orderly fashion.

And no panic?

One of the last “Aha!” moments I had with my therapist before she retired was the bit about finishing things. You have to understand, it was as if I were a prisoner or war or in jail or something.Almost everything I owned, everyone I knew, everything I said or did, wore, etc. was possibly taken, broken, denigrated, etc. I doubt anyone had any idea how confined I felt at the time: how scared I was that whatever I was doing or had or said would generate an attack. I was 3-12. It was a long time ago. But what happened in those years gave me the abuse behaviors and the PTSD which determined how I lived for the next 50 years. It’s been less than 10 years that I’ve been “well” enough to set aside the terror of being crazy, of being damned.

And I still, in my 60s don’t finish things, or hardly ever. I brought up the panic that I feel when I do finish things. I immediately go into hyper-critical mode, every flaw or fault is examined and derided, internally at least. Frequently I toss it out, if it’s knitting or crochet, I’ll take it apart. I find some reason NOT to finish things. So I brought this vexing problem up with my therapist. Who did, what she did, for years: look at me and say something which just blew me away: “Since you felt whatever you did was subject to attack — why would you finish things? You were much safer if you didn’t.”

And given how I felt, yep, that makes total sense.

Now I can see the home emerging from the house clutter. I can see the pattern of the food system emerging. I can see patterns of cleaning. All new, all at the same time.

And I’m waiting for that shoe. There’s always been a shoe. I’d rather avoid it this time, so we’ll just wait a while.