Monday, July 1, 2013

Under The Radar

It's been a crazy few months. Life gets like that, ya know?

I've been busy on the writing front and the life adventures front. Blogging front... not so much.

So, in order to get my blog producing again, I thought I'd sound off what I'm working on:

General Anxiety Disorder
I started therapy a couple weeks ago. While I haven't solved the mysteries of the anxiety universe, I do feel that my councilor and I are settling into a steady stride where some real progress can be made.

My biggest take-away, so far, is learning to accept myself.

See, I have this real problem with bullying. Deep down, I know I'm a whimp. A cry-baby loser who throws like a girl (then again, I've seen some underhand softball pitches that could drop an ox). I'm really good at looking at my problems, without seeing positive things I do.

As an example, a couple weeks ago, I attended my nephew's LDS mission farewell. A happy day and I was looking forward to seeing the family. But when we got there, my brother had snagged the third and fourth rows for our families.

Normally for me, church has always been a place where I'm relaxed and can refocus myself. But for the last several months, it's been sending me through the roof. So many people, colors, and noises. Now when I get ready for church, my gag reflex kicks in and I feel like I'm walking into a room full of people intent on killing me.

I prefer to sit anywhere in the rear of the chapel, isle seat for easy escape.

But at my nephew's farewell, I didn't want to sit in the back. I wanted to sit with the rest of the family. I knew everyone would understand if I didn't, and my wife asked if I like to sit somewhere else, but I didn't. So I sat my fat ass down and forced myself to sit there.

It was hard and after sacrament meeting was over, I bolted for the door. I felt like an idiot and was more than embarrassed.

When I talked about it with my therapist, she congratulated me and said I should be proud of myself for doing something hard like that. Something that I wanted to do.

It made me pause.

See, I'd been focused on how embarrassed I was to be having a panic attack. But she showed me that I should be looking at it from the angle of doing what I want to do. At looking at the little successes. Like 'baby steps' in, 'What About Bob?'.

Anxiety Denial
I'm not sure what the actual term is, but I've started labelling one of my anxieties: anxiety denial.

It's when thinking or doing something that gives me anxiety causes me to stick my head in the sand. Calling someone on the phone, opening a bill, or going to work. Heck, even writing on my blog that's been due fresh material for a couple months (so much for bi-weekly). The panic builds and I run away, sometimes literally.

I haven't been able to figure out how to overcome this problem, but I figure it's going to involve 'baby steps.' We'll see.

Writers of the Future Submission
This story has been a long time in coming.

It started off as a 12,000 word monster, climbed up to 13k, before finally settling somewhere between the two. I've been working on it for 3+ months, which is FAR longer than the one month I budgeted. My writer buddy, Kim Mainford, suggests it's time for me to move on.

Sadly, she's right.

My alpha readers have kicked the major flaws out of it, and I think it's a much more polished piece of prose (PPP). I'm wrapping up the current revision and should have it to my beta readers this week. My beta copies are comprised of: a half inch binder, one red pen, and 68 pages of Courier 12pt. font.

The nice thing about this project, is that, even though it 'stresses' me out, I LOVE working on it.

If you're interested in learning more about the contest, or would like to enter, click here.


  1. I'm siding with your therapist. Good for you for pushing yourself out of you comfort zone. Don't stop making progress, even if it's only small steps.

    You know, even though most of us don't feel anxiety to such extremes, we still have to deal with it. I actually related to a lot in this post.

    Welcome to the group.
    Best wishes for you PPP (love that!) WIP. :)

    IWSG #118 until Alex culls the list again.

  2. Came here from the IWSG and glad I found this post. I suppose anxiety is the root of insecurity or maybe it's the other way around. Not sure which. I have learned to overcome the 'running away' but the sick to my stomach feeling and actually making my self sick to my stomach, not so much.

    Thanks for posting your success. It puts a new light on those 'baby steps'.


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