My mind, my God. This is the mantra from this morning. Last night I awoke to a queer feeling of nameless dread, as if I were awaiting a sentence of some kind. My self cleaved; the logical side fled and in came a throng of worries about my personal health, my state of mind, and the world in general. I wanted to puke. I surmised the causes; perhaps it was that late evening cookie that packed a sugar power punch and fueled the panic. Perhaps it was a day of non-stop to do. What if something is wrong with my blood? What if I am depressed? What if the panic cannot be stopped? What if I am having a nervous breakdown? What if I can't sleep? How am I to function and be a mother to my kids? Do I have an ulcer? What if I am like the shark who sees its stomach floating on the outside of itself and continuously eats it to put it back in place but to no avail, it pops right back out each time?
My logical mind taps me on the shoulder. You need to protect yourself. You've got to stop taking everything to heart because your heart is over-stuffed. The killing and raping of children, the torturing of animals, cancer-stricken friends, environmental cataclysms (did you hear about the sink hole in Florida that swallowed a man whole?), celebrity suicides. What is the cause of this nameless dread, is it internal or external? It is all of these things. It is none of these things.
I took a pill. It's a small, white pill, very friendly-looking. I waited as the light brightened the windows, for it to dispel the onslaught of rapacious thoughts. I relaxed. I panicked. I relaxed. I panicked. I got up, when downstairs and ate a carrot. When I came back up, I peered inside at the twins and saw my little daughter sitting up in her crib. I longed to hold her, so I went in. She smiled and spoke jibberish. Then I held her to me and breathed in her skin. I felt love, the love she had for me and I calmed. I put her back in her crib and went to sleep.
My therapist: I think it was Kirkegaard who said you could sit around all day stricken with anxiety of what could happen to you, so you must protect yourself. Smooth over this life. It's the peanut butter theory.
Me: When I panic and am anxious, I forget the peanut butter.
My therapist: Open the cabinet and look at the jars!