Thursday, August 27, 2009
I'm am consistently amazed by what stress can do to your body. I teach (although we are on hiatus) a class on Monday nights at our church about living a more healthy lifestyle, and our next subject is stress. I'm thinking of using myself as a prime example. My body is calling my bluff. I keep telling myself I'm okay, that things are getting better, that I'm not as stressed as I was before. And then my body says "no, no. you can't lie to me. I will show you what stressed FEELS like!" I have four, count them FOUR, issues that I deal with on a regular basis that ALL get worse when I'm stressed. All four are right now laughing at me.
My neck issues. I had a car wreck in college that did much more damage to my neck than it did to my car. I've been through physical therapy for it several times, chiropractors, massage therapists, acupuncture (actually this worked the best..), and it still gives me fits all the time. When I'm stressed out I hold all my tension in this one spot, thus the makings for a spasm that could put me on the couch for two days. This is coming, I can feel it.
Teeth grinding/jaw clenching. How the CRAP do you stop doing something that you do in your sleep!!!! Headaches and jaw pain, teeth pain for goodness sake, just from clenching my stupid jaw! I wake myself up in the middle of the night thinking some awful thing is happening in my home because of the terrible noise, and then realize it's just me crushing my own teeth.
Hypoglycemia. I've had problems with this since I was a baby. But for reasons I will never understand it gets much worse when I'm stressed, leading me eat more to avoid the sick/hungry feeling and therefore gain weight.
Panic Disorder. I was diagnosed with this last year after many episodes that landed me in the ER thinking I was having a heart attack. Several doctor and specialist visits later, several uncomfortable tests later - Panic disorder. This is unlike panic attacks in that there is no actual cause for them. When you have a panic attack it's generally for such things as you don't like small spaces and get stuck in one or such. Panic disorder means I can have a panic attack for no reason whatsoever. In normal life that means every few months or so a panic attack will come. In whatever the heck THIS normal is, it means every time the phone rings my heart will beat like it's going to explode for the next ten minutes.
So, obviously my body is telling me to relax. Someone please tell me how to do that! Whatever I am doing is not working.