Have you ever had an anxiety attack due to a major life change? Lately I've been having several. Believe me its not good when you have to meet editorial deadlines and you're having anxiety. Here's the deal: I'm moving. Soon. Where you might wonder -- back from whence I came beacuse of a new assignment. The issue is -- my mother (experiencing dementia) isn't getting any better. In fact she's getting worse. I am feeling a combination of elation about my move and dread about what I might find when I return for a visit.
I've seen what happens when parent's get sick, I never imagined what it would be like to experience it first hand. Too scared. Alas, what I feared has befallen me.
I once watched a parent of someone I once cared about pass away from a terminal condition. It was absolutely heartbreaking to watch not only the parent decline but to witness a complete change in my friend. For at least a half year my friend was on auto-pilot not really experiencing any feeling but despair all the while having to shift into a role to help his parents.
Its particularly devastating for me because my father passed from an anuerysm seven months after my birth. My father and mother were married for less than 2 years before my mother became a young widow with an infant.
Now not only am I dealing with her illness but I'm also having to confront first hand my own health problems (digestive) many directly connected with my weight.
You know that saying "When in Rome... blah blah like the Romans?" Well that's a lame excuse I know for indulging in Southern fare however when you have a problem (like dementia) and various other family dramas facing you a piece or two of fried chicken -- um, not so bad.
In fact, I can drown out the tirade of even the most petulant shrew if I'm having a hot biscut and preserves.
So here in lies the pattern. Stress -- eat. Emotional outburst -- eat more. Unnerved -- eat.
Now as I embark upon my new journey I can return to my routine. I will be eating more whole foods, no gluten (which has probably ripped my stomach to shreds) regular exercise and peace.
I will no longer allow anyone else to affect (detract from) my quality of life. I believe I can manage my mother's illness and still maintain my life. This one thing I know if I lose myself, I will have nothing to offer her or anyone else for that matter.
In essence by moving I'm saving us all.
Published On: September 21, 2010