The body and mind are an interesting pair, even when they’re not functioning all that well.
There’s a key set of symptoms that I always have, and although they can make life challenging, I find them interesting.
Yes, I said interesting. Yes, I’m weird. I think it may be a coping mechanism that I hope I never lose. I become interested in something new happening to my mind and body, and by exploring and describing, I don’t catastrophize as I used to. I don’t blame myself for constantly thinking the worst. I’ve had a lot of health problems over the years, and this evolving response is trauma related. I guess it’s what happens when you try to get someone to believe that you’re pretty damn sick (and it turns out to be stage 3 cancer).
After that, I became too paranoid at every twinge. This leads you to get labeled by the medical community negatively, almost a cry-wolf situation. You then get a dick for a doctor who’s admitted they though I was faking an actual intestinal obstruction, which led to emergency surgery and almost getting a colostomy bag.
I’ve become quite self-aware, and now with the withdrawal, it’s a new level. It’s also really interesting to see how others react to what I go though. Some days it’s easier not to care, sometimes not so much. I still suck in that department. With time…
I’ve come to the conclusion that these are things I’m going to be stuck with for who knows how long.
Rocking/pacing back and forth
The image that goes with those words is usually someone completely debilitated, on the floor in the fetal position, and looks like they’re in a rocking chair. That, or, walking back and forth in one small area in a room, completely lost in the mind. Luckily the majority of my rocking is at a level which is still functional, and sometimes I’ll walk around my apartment until it stops. Yes, I’ve had nights where I can’t stop rocking (which causes some disrupted sleep). For the most part it looks like fidgeting, other times it’s me bouncing one and my legs up and down for hour. Surprisingly, it’s even quite subtle where no one notices. I have to let it pass: forcing it to stop is like not thinking about the big pink elephant.
Why it’s interesting? It’s my brain getting rid of excess anxiety in a safe way. Before it was go throw up, go run, go escape. All I have to do is move, and my brain’s happy.
Releasing knots in muscles
My muscles decide when they’ve had enough, and they’ll limit my movement. This causes me to break out in full out yoga-like poses to stretch them back into function. I also have to push on several pressure points (particularly my head/neck) to get a muscle to release. This has to look hella bizarre to anyone who passes by. It’s even worse when I have to ask a person I’m with to get to a spot I can’t reach. Due to the wincing and facial expressions, it makes me self-conscious to only do this when I’m around those who I know don’t care.
Why it’s interesting? It’s so cool to feel the knots move under your fingers, a muscle go from stiff to stretched, and how much a few minutes of intense pain both flows to another part of the body (then goes away), and I can move again.
Peeing like the faucet’s never off
Self explanatory. I average out three times an hour at its worst. Sometimes nervous pittles, other times a full blast of 250-500ml of liquid. I used to be self-conscious about this one as I was made fun of for the amount of trips I took to the bathroom. Those same people turned out to be toxic, and are no longer in my life. In university, I’d be in so much pain from holding as my perfectionism made me sit in that lecture chair. Now, I strait up tell people that need to know, and I go when I have to go. I usually throw in a joke you’re making me so anxious that I have to pee. Laughter works.
Why it’s interesting? The body holds a hell of a lot of fluid, and finally the liquid is going through the proper channels (I’ve dealt with rapid digestion).
Don’t count on me after 2pm
I get adequate sleep, I eat well, and I get as much exercise as I can. I plan out my days and pace, and have learned not to over-book. For some reason, once two o’clock hits, I’m done. It feels like someone has started to pour concrete in my veins, my brain starts to dissociate, and I go pale. I’m already pretty translucent, but this is almost like a gray. There’s no second wind, there’s no caffeinated beverage that helps, and naps are counter-productive. I continue to push through, but I’m best left to do the least stimulating activities until bedtime.
Why it’s interesting? I never actually paid attention to the time, and would always boom-bust. Now I know what I’m doing gives me a productive window of 7-8 hours (sometimes slow, sometimes fast). I want to see if that’s a benchmark I can push, kind of like a tolerance threshold. It’s become shorter, but never longer. I’m still working on figuring out how I can have a full day of feeling more than existing.
I’ll have to keep tabs for any other frequent flying symptoms. The rest is a spin of a randomized wheel with me hovering over the stop button internally screaming no whammies.
I’ve found some stability in the uncomfortable.