I hope I get this blog right. I had a brilliant idea as I was putting on my make-up and then lost about half of it when I was drying my hair.
So, here goes.
I was thinking about all that I'd been through with this pesky anxiety business. Now, I know I wrote about it months ago, but around this time last year, I became dangerously close to being housebound. I couldn't sit in a restaurant. A short ride in the car made me dizzy and nauseous and if there happened to be traffic...forget about it. Sitting in a movie theater was a struggle.
Really. This was not a good moment for me.
I tried everything I could last year to treat it "organically" only to cycle around again during the holidays and have one of the worst bouts of anxiety I'd ever had. Seriously. I wanted to write Amazon a thank you note because without them, my kids wouldn't have had any presents.
I didn't give up, but I went a different direction. I finally got on some medication that changed where I was headed. And where I was headed was a very scary place.
As I've written before, this probably started a long time ago but peaked last year just as Confessions of a Mediocre Widow was released. And after my last book signing in Houston - where I sweated and shook through my speech and then almost had a nervous breakdown on the plane ride home - my life completely changed.
A few months ago, I was asked to speak at an education foundation fundraiser in Portland, OR and I cautiously agreed, thinking that this would be a good goal for me. I thought I had six months to get myself together and that should be plenty of time.
But let me tell you...that plane ride and speaking engagement loomed before me and caused many a sleepless night.
So, two weeks ago, I boarded a plane, gave a speech, and then got back on a plane to come home. I know to many of you this doesn't sound like much, but for me it was like ripping off a big band-aid. In a good way.
If you happened to be in the Denver International Airport parking lot on Friday April 24th, I was the woman sitting in her car, grinning like and idiot and saying, "I'm proud of you" to the rearview mirror.
As I was putting on my make-up this morning, I was thinking about these last couple of weeks and how much better I feel. I confronted the beast and I conquered it. If someone asked me to fly somewhere tomorrow, I now have my most recent positive experience to draw from...rather than all of the negative ones from last year.
I think that's true for a lot of what I've been through. When I think about my husband's birthdays that my kids and I have celebrated...they weren't "awesome" but we were okay. We got through them. I've had seven Christmases without him and I'm still here - mainly because I know that I can do it. I know that there will still be unexpected things that come up, but I can remind myself that unexpected things have always come up.
And I'm still here.
I think I've posted this picture before, but I love it so I'm going to post it again. I'm just so darn proud of ALL of us.