A Good Breakdown

26 Apr 2019
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Gifted with anxiety as I am; I have also learned that a breakdown can be a good thing and not just in unused moving boxes.

Some years ago when I drove a school bus and was riddled with anxious thoughts and feelings, I had to break down the morning and afternoon run into baby steps. In the morning, I was plagued with the mindness of: "I can't do this. I should just quit. Call in sick at least." Then I would reframe to myself; "I will stick one foot out from the blankets and set it on the floor. Okay. Now I will sit up... stand up... walk to the bathroom... walk out to my car... well I am here may as well stick the key in the lock... turn. Open the door..." Each step got easier. It is true the first step is the hardest and that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single one of those hard steps.

"Take one day at a time," I have heard so often. And despised. As if there is another option in how days present themselves? According to a cute bumper sticker there is: "I try to take one day at a time but lately several have attacked me at once!"

For me, radical acceptance is key. It is what it is, no matter what it is. I wish I wasn't anxious but I am. I wish I didn't have a flaming case of PTSD but I do. So I no longer lay claim to them by calling them MY anxiety, MY PTSD, MY depression and insomnia. No. These are things I am affected by and deal with effectively by breakdowns. Good breakdowns. Step for step, not resulting in a trip to the psych ward.

As for one day at a time? And there even being a hymn to that affect in title and terms both.... I say pshaw! I have to live 20 minutes at a time. I look at a daunting task and say; "I could do that for 20 minutes anyway." Repeat.

The truth is, I am too blessed to be stressed and too grateful to stay immobilized by negatives. I love what the things affecting me have brought: for one; you all and moodscope.

Blessings,

Bailey

A Moodscope member.

PS. my favourite perspective-adjusting quote: "If they chase you out of town act like you're leading the parade." (Unknown).

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. Posts and comments on the blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice.

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Comments

Hopeful One

April 27, 2019, 5:36 a.m.

Hi Bailey-a very insightful blog.You seem to have a handle on your problems and have a strategy to cope with the issues in your own way. When one accepts something in fact anything -in your case radically- it becomes part of one's past. This leaves the future free. Laugh too,whenever you can. Warning:This joke has religious content which some Moodscopers may find offensive. When Paddy's dog died, he took it to the local Catholic church. He asked the preacher if he could have a funeral service for his much loved pet, but the preacher explained that they didn't do services like that for animals. Paddy asked who would and the preacher suggested that the Baptist church up the road would probably give the dog a funeral service. Paddy asked, "Preacher, do you think £5,000 would be enough payment for the dog's funeral?" The preacher replied, "Dearest Paddy, why didn't you tell me that your dog was a Catholic?"

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Jul

April 27, 2019, 6:30 a.m.

Do you think that's really true Hopeful One, that if we accept who we are, that becomes part of our past and leaves the future free? A wonderful inspiring thought. Jul xx

Bearofliddlebrain

April 27, 2019, 6:44 a.m.

I was wondering that too Jul. Maybe once we accept the way things are - we allow it in and we move on, so it becomes a part of us and our past, and our future is free to move into as a whole (including our poor mental health) but it will feel freer to move within the new future? Oh dear, I think I know what I mean but I may be confusing you here!!! Lol Bear xx

Jul

April 27, 2019, 6:53 a.m.

Ha ha, no more confusion that I'm already experiencing!! But you made me laugh out loud. I agree with your explanation though Bear. Lovely to see you here and we can wait to hear from Hopeful One to confirm we are right!! Love Jul xx

Jul

April 27, 2019, 7:47 a.m.

Another good joke Hopeful One. Jul xx

Lexi

April 27, 2019, 12:23 p.m.

Love it HO!

dancing hippo

April 27, 2019, 2:26 p.m.

I laughed HO and I am Catholic too .

dancing hippo

April 27, 2019, 2:26 p.m.

I laughed HO and I am Catholic too .

Hopeful One

April 27, 2019, 4:49 p.m.

Hi Jul and Bear- yes you both got the gist of what I am trying to say. Once we accept anything , difficult though it may be , we consign it to the past. It then has nothing new to tell us as it has told us all it knows . It’s a type of closure leaving us freer to deal with the future.

Hopeful One

April 27, 2019, 4:50 p.m.

Hi Guys- Thank you all for the thumps up for the joke especially if one is Catholic too.

Jul

April 28, 2019, 7:04 a.m.

Thank you very much Hopeful one. You are always very encouraging. It's so true that the past has nothing new to tell us. Great stuff. Jul xx

Orangeblossom

April 27, 2019, 6:15 a.m.

Thanks for this brilliant blog Bailey. Very insightful & filled with surprises. A very good read.

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Bailey

April 27, 2019, 12:57 p.m.

You are welcome and Thank YOU

Jul

April 27, 2019, 6:33 a.m.

Bailey, your writing is so lovely to read. Funny in parts too. I loved your first sentence. In fact your first and last ones were so positive. I agree that my mental health issues have brought Moodscope, you and the others into my life. What more could we hope for?! Jul x

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Bearofliddlebrain

April 27, 2019, 6:35 a.m.

An excellent blog Bailey - loved it! Very inspiring. I think many Moodscopers with anxiety will find this really helpful and I like your way of turning things around... so any affliction isn’t yours “, it’s what you live with. Have a super day and Bear hugs ***

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Maggie May

April 27, 2019, 6:36 a.m.

Hi Bailey, I really related to your blog , being fixed in a terrible cycle of inactivity brought about by an inability to decide simple things. Anxiety fills my head and exhausts and frustrates me, and everyone around me. It can take a couple of hours just to get up and dressed and I still feel I look awful. Jobs are mounting up because of fear and indecision. I know this eventually passes , I pray it is soon. In the meantime I will try your 20 minutes. I may even need to drop this to 5 minutes ! Thanks for blog.

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Maggie May

April 27, 2019, 6:36 a.m.

Hi Bailey, I really related to your blog , being fixed in a terrible cycle of inactivity brought about by an inability to decide simple things. Anxiety fills my head and exhausts and frustrates me, and everyone around me. It can take a couple of hours just to get up and dressed and I still feel I look awful. Jobs are mounting up because of fear and indecision. I know this eventually passes , I pray it is soon. In the meantime I will try your 20 minutes. I may even need to drop this to 5 minutes ! Thanks for blog.

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Bailey

April 27, 2019, 6:40 a.m.

Thank you all. I agree Hopeful one, if we can laugh we lessen anything with potential power over us... A man stricken with cancer went to the doctor and was given 6 months to live. "But doctor!" He cried;"I can't pay my medical bill off in such a short time!" So the doctor gave him 6 more months. Hugs to you all.

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Jul

April 27, 2019, 7:47 a.m.

Love this joke Bailey. Just told my husband Jul xx

Hopeful One

April 27, 2019, 9:32 a.m.

Hi Bailey - FABULOUS!

Molly

April 27, 2019, 1:33 p.m.

Ha ha, very funny !!

The Gardener

April 27, 2019, 9:02 a.m.

Bailey, my struggle is getting up at all, seeking a reason to do so. Common with old people alone, I think, you have to MAKE things to do. I have a routine, I am pleased, even proud, at the 'home' I have achieved when Mr G's illness forced me to leave the house which I expected to occupy for the rest of my life, so I make sure it looks nice. Weather awful, have an energetic young friend due this afternoon, so, I am sitting with some creative knitting/sewing and listening to radio. Otherwise would play Solitaire for hours, pure inertia. Thanks xx

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Rosemary

April 27, 2019, 9:28 a.m.

Hi Bailey, thanks for a fab blog that resonated with me, as I woke up with anxious thoughts this morning. Thinking of a 'break down' as 'breaking things down' is such a positive slant on it. There are times, like everyone when just getting going is a real task, but wow your words "I am too blessed to be stressed and too grateful to stay immobilized by negatives." hit me like a bolt. SO true for me now as I am blessed & I shall carry these words with me, repeating them whenever I feel the fingers of anxiety clawing at me. Thanks again ***

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Benjamin

April 27, 2019, 10:38 a.m.

Your breakdown can be another's blessings. I had an acquaintance who was having panic attacks and for a three month period I was asked to stay by her side and care for her in those moments. We are a long ways away and don't keep much in touch, but the duty and the memory of it has helped me through many hard times.

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Bailey

April 27, 2019, 1:11 p.m.

Awwe. So touching.

Lexi

April 27, 2019, 12:20 p.m.

Beautiful blog today Bailey. I especially loved the last paragraph and the quote today! xo

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RC

April 27, 2019, 1:01 p.m.

Thanks for your words Bailey; we can always learn something new from others views. I go with the flow, getting up to feed my Dachshund Lacey and myself before tucking myself and her back into bed again to rest if it’s a bad day. I’m good and have been for a couple of months however if that changes I will remember your post and others positive ways to get through each day, each hour, each minute until we see the light again. Because hopefully, we always do Take care x

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Bailey

April 27, 2019, 1:12 p.m.

Thank you everyone.

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dancing hippo

April 27, 2019, 2:33 p.m.

Thank you Bailey for a positive take on breakdown . This is what I am trying to do nowadays - revel in and enjoy staying in bed rather than beat myself up about it . Once I have enough sleep and rest without anxiety I am ready to go again . Running on empty …. but this is another story …..

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Molly

April 27, 2019, 2:35 p.m.

Hi Bailey, really good blog, explaining the joys of anxiety and your coping mechanisms along with ‘I am too blessed to be stressed’, love it! My anxiety occurs when I have to leave the house, which prevents me going out. If I have to go somewhere, I’m usually ok once I get there. The 20 minute thing, do you have to keep looking at the clock!! Lovely tribute to Moodscope members and I like the quote as well. ‘Stand tall and rise above it all’. Molly xx

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Valerie

April 27, 2019, 3:03 p.m.

Hi Bailey, Great blog.I agree with the 20 minutes at a time.A whole day can seem way too daunting at times.Maybe we should carry cooking timers with us. Lovely comments about Moodscoipe which I heartily agree with.xx

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DAVE

April 27, 2019, 5:03 p.m.

Hi Bailey, Grateful am I for your blog today. Without depression, we may well be encircled with other 'traits' like arrogance, superiority, unable to comprehend those around us who appear 'abnormal'. We have been blessed with emotions that encompass feelings, experiences, that take us down to the very 'pits of despair', where the only place to go is up, where we endure, we cope. We are brave...these feelings give us the greatest gift of all compassion, an ability to stand by and defend those who 'cower down' frightened and afraid, some who can stand no more of the lonliness and painful suffereing ways they've strived to cope with their afflictions...Those poor souls who have surcummed to taking their own life, maybe because you and other Moodscopers were not around. For this reason only Moodscope will be saving lives...Vocally adverise this website...It will reach someone in time to save them. We all have our ways we share to deal with the 'Black Dog'... That is the beauty and gift of communicating.... BP depression, mania and other mental issues are the reality of a broad expanse of emotions, using it as you do Bailey brings us all together unified and 'collectifly' sharing our experiences. Thank you for your expressive positive outlook which unites us all Bailey. *** bless. Dave.

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Bailey

April 27, 2019, 5:09 p.m.

Thank you Dave

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Sally

April 27, 2019, 6:12 p.m.

Great blog, Bailey. Late tuning in, but by all accounts others found it as helpful as I did. You write very well, and it was an interesting take on a breakdown. You are so right, little baby steps. Walking without running, just learning to pace oneself accordingly... I liked your quote , and your “I’m too blessed to be stressed”. Pithy sayings amuse me with their honesty and aptness.

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Ach UK

April 27, 2019, 7:41 p.m.

Dear Bailey, Thank you for your blog. For me it was a very wonderful description of the despair and horrible truths of mental unwellness. I cried, it was so evocative of moments from my life. I have come across Radical Acceptance and read a book by Sheri Van Dijk " Dialectical Behavioral Therapy Workbook for Bipolar Disorder which helped me understand Radical Acceptance. -- A very difficult thing to come to terms with, and takes enormous faith to work through. : )) I think it gets easier to truly do as one keeps at it. But it is a very difficult concept to accept. Bailey thank you so much for being so brave as speak about these horrible things. I send you much love and gratitude, and if I may, :))) Bl**dy marvellous you!! -- well done. Come again. XX Ach.

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Sugarandspice

April 28, 2019, 10:22 a.m.

Oh Bailey I just posted on today's blog by RATG about Radical Acceptance. It's not easy is it and yes focusing on the next 5 minutes is all we can do sometimes. I love that bumper sticker, it is so true. Life seems determined to knock us off course sometimes and again and again. "I am too blessed to be stressed" is my new motto. Breathe in breathe out and hold tight.

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