Knowing your limitations is just as important as pushing yourself to do things outside of your comfort zone. This is an aspect where I really struggle. I like routine; knowing exactly what I’m supposed to do and when brings me comfort. For me, the unknown, which includes anything new, is terrifying. It happens to be one of my PTSD triggers, which almost always causes an anxiety or panic attack. If it were up to me, I would do the same things every day; I would never go anywhere new and talk to anyone I don’t know.
Lucky for me (even though it may not feel like that at the time due to my fear), my husband is there to encourage me to branch out in many ways. Tonight, he got me to go to a bar and play darts with a couple of our friends. My first thought was, ‘How can he expect me to go to a bar where there are a lot of people?’ I felt angry, but I was really just afraid. I did everything I could to not go to the bar, but in the end, I went. Mainly because I can’t say no, it’s something I’m working on. So I went, and of course, I was extremely anxious. I couldn’t stand still. I had a hard time staying aware of everything that was going on around me. So I took a Valium, which helped calm me down but did not get rid of the restlessness. We played darts, and to my surprise, I enjoyed a large portion of the evening. While some moments were extremely frustrating, most of the time was manageable.
I went through just about every emotion this evening, which is exhausting and quite a bit overwhelming. But the most important part, is that I did it. I left the house and went somewhere that was unfamiliar to me. I faced a fear and pushed my limits. It doesn’t work out every time I try something like this, but it did this time. I feel a sense of pride for making it through the night and managing my anxiety attack in public. But I don’t see myself doing that again anytime soon. It’s important to have a balanced life in order to be healthy (in some way, despite the Bipolar and PTSD). I know I can’t have a healthy life if I only leave the house to go to the grocery store.
I want to express gratitude for my husband that pushes me to branch out in many different ways. Even though sometimes it’s too much, there are some times that he is right. Everything he does comes from a place of love. I’m lucky to have him. Having the man I love stand by me through all of my vast emotions makes me an abundantly fortunate woman.