Sunday, January 27, 2013

Anxiety Meds

Play Soundtrack in new window: These Days, Jackson Browne...

I learned years ago that extensive endurance training rattles loose long-forgotten, emotional memories. Riding north of 100 miles on a bike I would grind home with swirls of high school nights flashing like planetarium laser shows. I'd conjure people, scenes and emotions I hadn't visited in years, hadn't thought I would ever resurface through the accretion of life and maturity in the years since.

While emotional, surprising, and totally not under my control, I came to savor the richness of the snowglobe effect distance training has on my brain. 

This past week I ran an early morning 9 in single digit degrees then went to work and came down with a touch of flu. Feverish for a day, I slept two days and kept still a third. 

I don't care what happens but I absolutely cannot keep still another. 

I don't know if the parade of nightly horribles keeping me from sleep the last two nights comes from the virus's last stand or the longest stretch of endorphin-less time I have spent in years.

You whom I have wronged, failed, inadvertently insulted or let down, who through inexperience and short-sightedness I have committed transgression against, all the jobs I haven't gotten or even applied for, the work not done well, the achievements I have through sloth or ineptitude, left for someone else, the daughter, partner, sister, parent, niece, aunt, cousin, friend, superhero I could - should have been...has all this and more haunted my recovery from this light brush with flu-like symptoms. 

The money I haven't saved, the money I spent, the cookies and candy I ate when I shouldn't have, the food I didn't eat when I should have, the donations I didn't make when asked, the non-sustainably sourced food I have consumed, the fuel burned on my account for reasons substantial and trivial, the food I have microwaved instead of prepared slowly, ... yeah, far enough overboard that even I eventually figured out that some rheostat up there went miscalibrated. 

I know, I am catastrophizing with all the shoulds, and all the slights I debit on your behalf against myself (I have really thick skin, so please don't worry  that I spend all my time tallying imagined, unintended hurts). And all the underachievement. If I were well I would consider the leadings a compass. My point is that the data coming through in the teeny hours was overwhelmingly absurd.

I have got to get moving again stat. Running does that for me, calms the anxiety, calibrates the rheostat controlling these racing, anxious, self-flagellating, wild insomniac thoughts. 

It finally dawned on me sometime after midnight the connection between the last few days of no moving around and this toxic, only partially honest, sludge causing insomnia and a racing heartbeat and composed mea maxima apologia at all random hours.  I so appreciate being well enough to move and am totally fine with facing the consequences if I false start and relapse for not sitting still long enough. I gotta get going.

Samaritans, for whom I am running, answer calls from brains like mine operating under a severe happy-hormone deficit. I am honored to support them. And getting my soccer shoes on for some cross-training. Join me!

"Don't confront me with my failures, I had not forgotten them." 

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