A few weeks ago, I was reading on the couch when my boyfriend asked, “Want to move to Olympia?” I sleepily replied, “Oh, sure.” It’s only an hour and half away and it’s more affordable than our current suburb, so I figured why not? One week later he was interviewing. A few days later he was offered the job. On Tuesday, I went into work and gave my notice. Having recently transferred to a new branch, I was giving my notice almost exactly a month after I started. I’ve been with the company for nearly seven years, but I knew I was betraying my kind and easygoing new bosses by leaving so soon.
“Generalized anxiety disorder symptoms can vary. They may include:
Difficulty handling uncertainty or indecisiveness
Now, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it, but I have some anxiety issues. My therapist trained me to deal with change by focusing on taking care of myself and planning for the events under my control. You know, do things like meditating, exercising, organizing, and preparing. The basic adulty behaviors. So naturally, I reacted this week by making three donut runs, one Dairy Queen run, a few beer runs, and binge-watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer. As Buffy would say, I’ve been “happily vacationing in the land of not coping.”
Carrying every option in a situation all the way out to its possible negative conclusion
Persistent worrying or obsession about small or large concerns that’s out of proportion to the impact of the event
Well, that’s not entirely true. I have done some adult-type activities that I was terrified of doing. I emailed my resignation notice. I explained to my managers why I didn’t want to stay with the company, therefore admitting to myself and everyone else that I don’t want to stay in banking and am capable of finding a job I enjoy more. Which means I will have to apply for jobs and go on interviews. Holy shit what did I do??? If I don’t find something I must be an incompetent, lazy moocher who can only excel at counting money and oh my god, I’m going to end up one of those ladies pushing around a cart of junk and sleeping under bridges!
Worrying about excessively worrying
Anxiety Allie has been a real bitch to me this week, following me around and whispering “what if’s” and worst-case scenarios in my ear. Telling me how selfish I’m being by making this great opportunity all about me and my inability to control my fear. Typical dramatic martyr, turning a positive situation into a pity-party. I mean, on paper, the situation is great. The rational part of my brain does realize this. I know that the facts are: my partner got an amazing job, which means he will be happier, receive the pay & amazing benefits he deserves, and we will finally live in an area where we can afford something other than apartment rentals, and where we won’t spend hours in traffic. Oh, my god, I’m a terrible girlfriend, what is wrong with me that I don’t feel just as happy and excited for all of these good changes???
Distress about making decisions for fear of making the wrong decision
My emotional and anxious brain wants to curl up with books, beer, and/or Buffy and forget about dealing with things like packing, moving, finding a place to live, applying for jobs, interviewing, figuring out insurance while I’m unemployed, changing doctors/dentists/vets, getting used to a new job and new co-workers, learning a new occupation and being the rookie who has to ask questions instead of being the supervisor who answers the questions. Go back and beg your bosses to just take you back! Don’t risk the chance of failing in front of everyone and screwing up your dreams.
Inability to relax, restlessness, and feeling keyed up or on edge
Difficulty concentrating, or the feeling that your mind ‘goes blank.'”
When my mind won’t allow my body to stand still enough for zoning out, I obsessively clean, pack and repack boxes, or dive into work projects I created for myself and just must get done today or the company will collapse into ruin. I feel tired all of the time and so out of it, I have trouble doing basic things like forming coherent sentences or remembering anything I needed at the grocery store. But when I try to sleep, I tense up and start obsessively running through more worst-case scenarios. When I finally fall asleep I have nightmares involving catastrophic natural disasters that only I seem to notice. Why is no one else reacting to the giant tidal wave about to engulf the city? Run for your lives you crazy calm cretins!