How I Decided to Deal with Anxiety Naturally
I dedicate this post to everyone who has experienced anxiety at some point in their lives.
You cannot sleep. You wake up feeling a big knot in your stomach and thinking something really terrible is about to happen. You start to panic for no reason. Your stomach hurts, and you feel like you are burning inside. You get out of bed and start walking in circles. You cannot get anything done. This is anxiety, and it is the worst feeling I have ever experienced.
After my first child was born with a rare birth defect (esophageal atresia), my life changed forever. Weeks in the NICU, countless ER visits, tests, and procedures really took a toll on me. It made me a different person. It made me a chronic and obsessive worrier. I had negative thoughts all the time and started to experience anxiety everyday.
During that time, I started seeing a wonderful therapist that helped me a lot with my fears and anxiety. I knew I had to get help. She helped me realize I should enjoy the present and not think so much about future complications my son could have. She also helped me understand I needed to appreciate each moment. So I started to feel positive again, and my anxiety left me alone for a while.
A few years later I had a second baby. My daughter was born 100% healthy, but instead of being grateful and happy, I started to feel anxious again. I started to obsess about every single little thing. I had two kids now to worry about. I felt so anxious and desperate that I went to see my doctor. In less than 10 minutes she diagnosed me with postpartum depression and gave me a prescription for antidepressants. I left her office thinking I was not going to take those medications. I was eating healthy, my kids were doing well, my husband was extremely supportive and helpful. Why was I feeling so bad?
I thought my anxiety was going to go away, but a few days later, my anxiety got worse. Not talking to anyone about it and just ignoring it was the worst thing to do. It got so bad that one morning I ended up in the ER with a panic attack (first one I ever had in my life). There I was panicking and thinking I was such a failure. A nurse gave me a Xanax and I knew that meant the end of breastfeeding. I felt so guilty, but at that moment I felt so weak and helpless that I took it. I gave up.
The next couple of days were really depressing. There I was giving formula to my baby, trying to stop producing milk, and taking Xanax twice a day. A week later, I went back to see my doctor. She told me to take the antidepressants, and I started taking them. The first week I could not sleep, but soon afterwards, antidepressants kicked in and I felt no more anxiety. I felt nothing. As a matter of fact, I had no feelings or emotions. I could not feel happy, or sad, or cry, or laugh. But I had no more anxiety and was able to function again.
After 2-3 weeks of taking the antidepressants, I woke up one morning feeling like a robot, and I decided to help myself naturally. This is How I Decided To Deal With Anxiety Naturally. I did not want to live a life without feeling anything. I did not want to depend on chemicals to be able to function.
I am a huge believer in natural medicine. I saw the results with my son so I had to try and fix it for myself as well. I realized that day that I could be stronger than my anxiety. I realized I had the courage to stop the meds and deal with it naturally.
I am doing great right now. I do not know if my anxiety is going to come back again, but at least I know now How I Decided To Deal With Anxiety Naturally and recovered. I feel stronger and a lot more confident now.
How I Decided To Deal With Anxiety Naturally
Taking long walks in the mornings. Breathing fresh air is a great way to relieve my anxious feelings. Very early in the mornings, with my baby in the stroller, I would take a walk for about 30 minutes. The photo you see in this post was taken with my iPhone one morning the baby woke up really early. Thanks to my baby, I was able to admire one of the most beautiful sunrises I have ever seen in my life.
Talking to family and friends. A friend or family member who cares about you will listen to your problems. Talking about my anxiety helps me with my fears and concerns. Good friends and family offer great advice too. I feel it is great therapy to talk about your problems. To be heard and understood. There are thousands of people dealing with anxiety everyday.
Getting professional help. Most health insurance policies now cover therapy treatments. A good therapist can help you a lot. It is great to talk to family and friends, but a professional can help you deal with your anxiety naturally too. They have the expertise and knowledge to guide you and help you recover. They can offer expert advice to treat your symptoms.
Taking magnesium. I started researching about it and found out magnesium is one of the best natural relaxers. It is a fantastic mineral for anxiety, so I take magnesium now everyday. I really cannot tell you with 100% certainty that magnesium fixes my anxiety, but it for sure helps me feel calmer and sleep better.
Avoiding caffeine and drinking lemon water instead. When I am feeling anxious I do not drink coffee because it makes it worse. Drink warm lemon water as soon as you wake up. Lemon water is amazing! Lemon has calming effects, it will clean your system and you feel more energized. It really works for me.
Accepting the fact that I am not perfect. You cannot live a life that is perfect and you are only human. I really wanted to breastfeed my baby for at least the first year of her life and I couldn’t. I did it for four months and I did not fail as a mother. I did the best I could and have to accept the fact that I am not perfect. All I can do is try to be a little better each day.
Taking it one day at a time. You cannot recover from anxiety in just one day. Take little steps each day to try and overcome it. When you have anxiety you cannot get anything done. Make a list of 2 or 3 things you would like to accomplish that day and try to do them. Feeling productive helps.
It took me a long time to write this. At first, I felt embarrassed and ashamed for having anxiety. I understand now it could happen to anyone.