What’s your damage, Heather?

What’s your damage, Heather?

While I was waiting for the results of the test, I played a little game. I wrote down some of the things I consider symptoms; things I’d like to get a better handle on, control better, work with, cure, fix, whatever. I Googled some of the overall labels like Anxiety, Grief, ADHD, and compared the symptoms that came up for them to the list I’d made. I thought there would be some overlap, BUT Y’ALL. I didn’t expect this much overlap, and it really made me sit back and think “this is why this shit is always so hard to diagnose.” Also “this is why people who present with things like this are often shooed away with a brand new prescription and are told to just lose weight.” It’s downright confusing to figure out what you have when what you have presents as six different things. It’s also a great argument on not self-diagnosing (please note I did this chart just out of curiosity, not to actually diagnose myself), and why your health care professionals should be listening to you, working with you, and advocating for you.

Hopefully, clicking on the image will make it larger and easier to read… if I’m doing this right…. hope I am…..

Disclaimer: This is not meant to diagnose anyone for anything. I am not a doctor. I’m just a curious person trying to figure some shit out, and making lists has always helped me.

Do I know what I have? Well, I mean, a good guess would be anxiety and grief, you know, what with the last couple of years I’ve had. But I know other widows, other grieving people, and … I mean, I don’t want to minimize the twenty years Tim and I had together, but I kind of seem to not be in the same place. Which is fine and normal! Different people grieve differently, heal at different rates, cope with things in their own unique manner. Plus, I had a lot of time (well, three months) to grieve while he was in the hospital. I went through a lot then. A LOT. I was afraid he was going to die, convinced he was going to die, thought he might make it but need 24/7 health care for the rest of his life, worried that he might need that and not be getting it, and then pretty sure, that last week, that he was going to die.

And honestly, with as unhappy as we had been together for about the previous year, who’s to say that I hadn’t already been grieving then, during that last year? When he was still alive? Granted, grieving for the troubles we were having, not for the loss of him, but… working shit out means working shit out. So is one of my diagnosis really, truly grief? Or is it just that grief has so many of the same symptoms as other things? Another option is that I’m so COMPLETELY messed up that I haven’t even GOTTEN to grief yet. Maybe grief is so much that my body and mind are like “nope, no room at the inn, come back later.” I guess we’ll find out soon….

Part 4 of ….? Stay tuned for Part 5. I think it’s going to be at least seven parts.

3 thoughts on “0

  1. You are exactly right, I think, when you say you did a lot of your grieving while he was in the hospital. I think that resilient people (and you are one of those, take my word for that) tend to process loss differently than other people. You did a lot of grieving already, and its okay to “get on with” your life without feeling like you are weird because you aren’t constantly stuck in the morass of sadness. You’ll have your moments, but grief is counterproductive to having a life, and you are too full of life to let it drag you down. You are Resilient. We bounce back.

  2. Lore
    You and the ladies watched ‘Stargate SG-1′ I know.
    Somewhere, well along in the series there was a scene where the archeologist Daniel Jackson who had personally been dead at LEAST twice is in the wee hours talking to the alien T’lc about not being able to sleep well.
    T’lc sums it all up pretty well.
    “Frankly Daniel Jackson given the things you have been thru I am amazed you can sleep at all!”
    There is such a thing as being too hard on ones’ self you know, no I am not just adding another ‘issue’ to the box I am trying to paint the box a bit more restful color.
    Doc’s, meds, talking, venting on here?
    All good if a path to the end you seek, but know WE, those of use who have watched the agonies and more than one! and the resolute HEART you have responded them with are so proud of you.
    Take that for what it is worth, this is a tough room.

  3. I think I told you this before but it took me three years to emerge from the grief fog. I thought I was doing great. Processing thru my grief & trauma just fine, until I came out on the other side. George’s death triggered my going thru menopause at 46 yo. I was unaware of it due to starting a new job two months after, in a totally different environment. Also realizing my dream to teach college level! Am I happy? How can I be? Am I holding it together (appearances)? One foot in front of the other. Do this for/with your family. Do this for/with your friends. Move along. They have been so supportive. WHERE IS MY SUPPORT?! “Are you still greiving?”
    I should have been in therapy then. Thank god I wasn’t on meds then, I was already in a fog & didn’t know it.
    And now 21 years later, I’m still working thru it. Things happened since then that piled on, higher & deeper trauma. I thought I was doing okay, until the next trauma…until the last trauma (the straw, the tipping point). Thank god for my sister. She forced me into therapy. Forced me to admit to myself that I was no longer able to bounce back. So now my insurance pays someone professional to listen to me, to be there for me no matter what, & to give me learned advise to help me toward moving forward.

    Yes, you may have all those things at once or all the things in one catagory at one time. The fact that you are starting somewhere will achieve what you want to do (even if you don’t know what that is). ((((HUGS))))

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