Whoa…dissociation again

I found myself wanting to post about my very recent (past two days) experience with dissociation due to massive stress about my moving in less than two weeks…then I got to my blog and noticed my last post was about dissociation.

Man, I worry waaaaayyy too much :/

Anyway, here’s what’s been going on, as conveyed to a friend (names omitted):

Hey [friend]: do you have dissociative or depersonalization episodes? I don’t feel like I’m watching myself live someone else’s life, but I definitely feel very fuzzy (things seem almost cloudy vision-wise, and I want to do things slowly to compensate; I thought I shouldn’t drive to the store to get food because I thought my reaction times and decisions wouldn’t be good enough..though perhaps having a concrete thing to do might help) and a bit physically imprecise…like I’m not real. I slept so much yesterday, and I thought that would mean I’d not fall asleep quickly last night–I actually fell asleep quickly and slept for 4 hours (until a few minutes ago). Not at all surprised by the lack of a full nights sleep. Another symptom has been being easily affected by sudden noises, and going back n forth between feeling little anxiety to feeling a bit more. Either way I feel fragile.

Does any of this sound familiar to you personally? Or if not does [friend’s husband] or anyone else you know experience this the way I’m experiencing it? I read a bit about dissociative states and anxiety disorders and one person said that dissociation is the brain’s way of protecting itself from more hurt. The blogger suggested breathing exercises and other things that I have in my DBT manual for coping with anxiety, such as keeping a unique-feeling object in my pocket and squeezing it and touching it, concentrating on feeling it.

In any event, I want this feeling to go away because it’s a bit distressing, but I think distress has led me to the dissociation, so I’m doing my best to not think of anything in the future…which is difficult since I’ll be moving in less than 2 weeks. God I can’t wait til that’s done.

Forgot to mention: yesterday I felt like I could experience any emotion at all at the drop of a hat and for no discernible reason. The intensity of certain emotions changed as well. I felt like the future was going to be ok one minute, and suffering-filled the next.

Anybody else ever feel like this? Wanna weigh in?

Feel not real.

Over the weekend I did things to be celebrated.  I celebrated them because they were mastery experiences–things that I was afraid of but did anyway. (People who have read some of my other blog entries will know about my anxiety issues)  I hadn’t been on a bus by myself (a 2+ hour trip to Boston) in over 15 years.  I factually knew there was little danger, and so I spent the time managing anxiety with breathing and strong thoughts.

Between this, staying at my brother’s place, walking everywhere (my elliptically-trained muscles didn’t prepare me for the fatigue I felt a lot of the time), going to see the Red Sox (an amazing game, though the physical seats themselves were and are positively terrible comfort-wise), going out to eat a few times, all in the presence of my brother and my cousin…I was managing a good deal of stress all the time.  I did a good job of it too.  I didn’t panic.

When I got home Sunday, I was so relieved I started crying a little.  Mostly though I was very fatigued but glad I did the weekend.

But right now I feel not real.  Fuzzy.  Like I’m in a cloudy dream.  Anxious, mostly in my tummy (the fact that I strained by back earlier today isn’t helping).  My ability to read at much speed and my comprehension is a bit off. (So much for getting some more work done tonight).  I think all the stress of the weekend is finally affecting me.  I feel like I could either cry all over the place or sleep for 2 days.  Thoughts are coming in of “you did too much this weekend”, but they are secondary to the not-realness.

I’m listening to soothing music and working to do things more slowly tonight, like typing this at a slower speed.  Deeper breathing too.  I have a medication I can take if things get worse, but I’d rather see if I can manage this with skills.

I’m not going to die.  This isn’t a panic attack, but I’m experiencing some of the accompanying unreal-ness.  It could lead to one.  But I’m not going to die.

Closing my eyes and resting between sentences.  Slow.