If a group of scientists came out and said that millions of Americans were suffering PTSD from surviving 2020 (so far), that wouldn’t surprise me a bit. Each day I see more posts about trying to be positive or do something, or posts about having difficulty dealing with what was going on lately.
For myself, I haven’t had decent sleep in three days. I’ve woken up with an eye twitch and shaking hands because I just couldn’t get adequate rest, and the twitch gets worse when I drink more caffeine than usual just to stay awake and get something done, no matter how weak or little it is. I’m about to head to bed and try to recover some of those hours, and if it turns out I don’t have to help a neighbor kid with his homework in the early hours, I’m going straight back to bed and not getting out til I’m ready to.
You said it, Donald.
I was actually so anxious that I’ve had a hard time keeping down my meals, and had to distract myself so as not to get sick a few hours ago. Slowly intaking some water helped a bit (and I could actually use more now) and now I’m okay. I was just worried because, as a recovering bulimic, I can tell that anxiety on overdrive really makes relapses possible… practically inevitable if I’m not paying attention.
As much as I’d like to declare a moratorium on the news, I have a hard time doing that. I figure I’ve been politically asleep too long in my life and need to learn what is possible so I can be of help. The trouble is, I’ll probably have to take time away anyway and make myself do it.
This anxiety has robbed me of my mind.
And that’s a pretty bad sign for someone who wants to be a story writer, and quit her job to pursue that goal again.
I’ve noticed the past few weeks that thoughts have been harder to come by and keep. I read a lot about activism in blogs and trying to support folks and be helpful. When I try to think of what I can do and what I should look to do… I would blank every time. My mind has been either brimming with noise when I least want it to be, or absolutely silent when I need to put thoughts together and do something.
That’s probably what I look like if I’m talking to myself in front of a blank page these days…
No wonder my attempts to get things done around here have gone by the wayside, and the house is a wreck. I have been losing things a lot more often than usual, and forgetting what I was working on more often. I have a dozen tasks set out and stacks of things to check on, but I can’t remember exactly what I got things out for.
I’ve been getting more worked up over the idea that my imagination must’ve fled me for brighter pastures or something, because how the hell could a brain that never shuts up suddenly have nothing to produce when I have a moment to record? Or an hour?
I was getting more anxious over that, and that made getting restful sleep even harder. That meant those little negative voices in my head had free reign to berate me for my choices and lack of “sensible options.” I’d quit my day job due to stress and lack of creative outlets, all in the hope of using my imagination to become an author and make a living. And then when I needed it most, it felt like it abandoned me.
Apparently, there’s a “difficulty thinking” aspect of Anxiety that I could be going through right now. Granted, this is more of a self-discovery rather than an official diagnosis, but the symptoms sure seem right. My anxiety has made sleeping hard and thinking even harder.
I’m sure glad I didn’t stick around my old job after all: I probably would’ve been fired for screwups galore by now the way I’ve been. Completely scatterbrained.
I was able to figure this out when I had to go pay some bills and get some more books on bass guitar from the store, and I let myself look around while so few people were there. The traffic wasn’t even that bad for once, which was a pleasant surprise. But when I got home and started trying to get things organized and think about what needed doing… here came the blankness.
The borrowed energy of doing something new for a few hours just drained away, and I was lost.
I sure hate that “it’s on the tip of my brain” feeling… and it’s been going on for weeks.
Dismayed, I went to open up some boxes of kids books I bought to fill up my Little Free Library and clean the sale stickers off of them. I got that done, at least, but even going out and walking around with the dogs while they exercised didn’t do anything. I had a pen in my hand and just completely blanked.
Hopefully, some good sleep the next few days and less coffee will help a bit. And though it hurts, other than some short clips, I’ll probably not be reading the news for the next few days. I’m so tired I’m almost falling asleep just sitting here and writing this.
I think that’s a sign, so I’ll turn off the lights, pet the pups, and hopefully relax enough to get some sleep. I hope we all can; don’t think I’ve read as many bad-dreaming posts or general anxiety or fury posts in such a short time before. And tomorrow, I’ll pull out the writing prompt journals I found earlier today and see if maybe a slow, quiet read will rattle a few things loose up in the brain. Even if it’s sucky, it’ll be better than nothing, and something to work with.
Be well, all, and take care of yourselves, even if the world seems intent on shoving you down making your brain explode.
3 thoughts on “The months of This American Madness have robbed me of my mind…”
A very large number of people in this country are actually showing signs of PTSD and/or Stockholm Syndrome. You are not alone.
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Try adding to your anxiety/stress two doctor’s appointments two days in a row where both doctors suggest tests (and trial meds) that will mean more scheduling, and other time-consuming activities.
Booooo on everything! Sleep tonight? Ya’ think?
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