I’ve been a little MIA over the past week or so. I took a step back from both offline and online worlds, and I’m ready to share why…
The first time it happened was around Christmas, I was walking through Winners looking for a stocking stuffer. I walked near the back of the store and then I felt this weird feeling wash over me, my eyes felt as if they were closing and the room started to dim. My heart started beating really fast and I started to feel nauseous.
I was freaking out! What was going on? I didn’t want to faint in the store! So I started to breathe and talk to myself as I walked slowly back to my car.
I sat in my car and put my head between my knees, then I sat up and just watched people in the parking lot for about 10 minutes. I wasn’t near my home and wasn’t sure I could drive.
I took one step out of the car after I thought I felt better and the weird feeling came again. What was going on? Did I eat something out of the ordinary? What the heck was wrong with me?
I call my Aunty who lives nearby and happens to be a nurse. She comes to get me and drives me back to her place. As she talks me through my symptoms she tells me perhaps I needed a bowel movement as sometimes the vagus nerve can cause fainting symptoms.
That had to be it. What else could it be?
After about an hour at her house and a cup of tea I drove home without issue and chalked it up to an isolated incident.
Fast forward a few days, my in-laws (who were staying with us for a week) and I took a walk to the nearby store. As I enter the store the same feeling washed over me, my eyes started to close in and my heart was beating super fast. I excuse myself and tell them I need to use the washroom. I sit with my head between my knees wondering what is going on, how can this be happening again?
After a few minutes I talk myself through it and finish up shopping with the inlaws. I knew that the very next day, I was going to the doctor.
At the doctor I tell her my symptoms and she says that perhaps I’m a little stressed. Me? Stressed? Yes, perhaps having the inlaws was a lil stressful, yea, let’s go with that. She prescribes me Serc (betahistine) and tells me to take it as needed to deal with the dizziness and lightheadedness.
For months I don’t have the weird feeling again until this past week. This week I was literally driving home during rush hour and my eyes started to close, my heart felt like it was going to beat out of my chest, and I felt like I was going to faint. I start to breathe deeply and talk to myself. This is not happening in the middle of York St with nowhere to turn off and calm myself down.
What the heck triggered it this time?
I calm down enough to make it to my son’s school and I’m feeling better, but just in case I run to a nearby store and use the washroom.
I pick up my son and start to head home. The feeling returns while I’m driving on the highway with my 3 yr old son, alone! Why is this happening? At this point I try to sing songs with him and breathe deeply all the while thinking to myself that I just want to make it home with my baby safe and sound.
As soon as I pull into the garage I breathe a sigh of relief. I take my son in the house and tell my daughter to watch him as I felt ill. I go upstairs to my room shaking and crying. I lie down and don’t get out of bed until the next morning. Migraine symptoms ensue and I truly just feel awful and miss a couple of days of work because of it.
Earlier this week a lot of people around me have died or are dying. Not only am I dealing with death at work (clients/employees), but even people I’ve met online who have died too soon. The worst news? My closest cousin’s dad has been given grave news. Perhaps, and I’m speculating, this is all related to my own grief about my mom? Almost two years later? Too much death in a matter of days? I’m not really sure.
I’ve been to the doctor, and physically, I’m one healthy woman! The only additional test the doc suggested was an EKG, which I am optimistic will also come back normal. So what’s the verdict from the doc and in my own personal opinion?
It’s the only thing I can think of and it’s now something I never thought I’d need to manage. How will I do that? Well, I immediately refused the Ativan the doctor offered and instead I will do the following:
- Continue to eat healthy foods, and only put good food in my body. Drinking herbal teas, lots of water, and keeping the coffee and wine to a minimum.
- Get way more physically active. Walking just isn’t enough. Golf isn’t enough. I need to carve out time to start running again, get that cardio going, and utilize the workout space in our home. The doc also suggested that I take up yoga, so I’m on the lookout for classes close to home.
- Keep taking my B100 complex vitamins. There was a noticeable change when I started taking them again at the beginning of the year.
- Stop being everything to everybody and remember NATALIE has to be taken care of first. I need to get a little selfish and stop being super generous with my time, at work, at home, with friends and family. I need to know when to close the door, not answer the phone and just say no, respectfully of course.
- Sleep! I really don’t sleep enough, I really don’t. We (fiance and I) are working really hard at this one, which means I may have to sleep alone in a separate room for a while.
- Take time to speak with a professional. I will never be embarrassed or ashamed to use counselling services etc as needed, especially when they are offered so readily at work. I’m clearly still grieving and need to continue to talk through my sadness.
It was very important for me to share this with all of you, as I’ve been the energetic, hunky-dory, positive, motivational crazy woman in your lives for a while, so I felt you deserved some reasoning for my absence. I’m still that woman, always will be. It helped immensely to write this post, to see it written, to give myself reminders, clarity and to know that I am not invincible even though I am seemingly superwoman day in and day out.
I want to see my babies graduate, I want to be around when they get married, heck, I want to get married! My optimal health and wellness is key to all of that, (not that it hasn’t been before); however, these recent episodes have jolted health and wellness to the very front of my priority list.
I know many people around me suffer from anxiety and other types of mental health conditions, so if you have some tips, natural methods and/or remedies you’d love to share with me and anyone else reading who may need it, it would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you all for reading, thanks for sticking with me, and thanks for just being there.