Tag Archive | dealing with anxiety and worry

Still Alice

stillaliceStill Alice

Have you read the book by Lisa Genova or seen the movie?  I read the book a few months ago and watched the movie over the weekend.  Tears poured down my cheeks while reading so when I watched the movie, I thought it would be easier.  But I was wrong.

Being that I presently have two loved ones in my family with the disease, the book and movie hit home in a way that hurt me to my core.  Perhaps it’s because I have such profound empathy for Alice.  I can imagine as I watched and read Still Alice, what she was enduring.  Perhaps because it hit so close to home these days in my life, that it left me sobbing at times and even after the book and movie were over, I felt despondent.

To process the feelings that I carry, I’ve had to dig deeply and to accept what perhaps I had yet to accept in my life and in the lives of my loved ones.  Still Alice shined a direct flashlight on my current situation with my family in a way that allowed the tears that I’d been holding back for so long to be released.  The depression that I have been hiding for so long about my two loved ones situation and my dealing with the present situation came to light head on (pun intended).  I watched as Alice began to repeat herself, to lose herself and her precious memories.  I sympathized with her family who felt frustrated by her increasing forgetfulness, the constant repetition and her lack of focus.  It gave me a way to see my loved ones in a different light.  It allowed me to feel not so alone on this journey and to not feel guilty for the frustration that I face in dealing with their disease.

I wish I could tell you that it gave me strength, but alas, it simply broke my heart, over and over again.  I want everything to be better for Alice and for my loved ones.  I fear that genetic factor will be a possibility for me as well.  The more I learn about the disease, I realize that I could face the same situation down the road someday.

I am frightened.  I know that it does me no good to fear what may or may not come my way.  I know that I must rule my own mind, stay strong and do my best.  But if you are a sibling or child of someone with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, you will understand how I’m feeling.

Do you feel the same way?

Shine On!



The Waiting is the Hardest Part


As with any illness, it’s the waiting I think that is the hardest part.  Don’t you agree?  I recently had my twice yearly oncology check up and I am now waiting for the results of my tests.  Honestly, I am a bit ill at ease until I hear the numbers of my tumor markers.  I try very hard to keep myself in check as the days go by, but sometimes that anxiety sneaks up on me in the most slippery of ways.  Does this happen to you?  Been there, gotten a bad diagnosis, so the rest of your life, you’re waiting for the other shoe to drop even though you are well aware that you should not be thinking this way?

The Waiting is the Hardest Part

I think it’s when all the woulda/coulda/shoulda’s come out in the open and rear their ugly heads.  At least that’s how it is for me.  I get aches and pains and heart palpitations which I know are self-induced by my inner panic which I am trying very hard to avoid.  I don’t talk about it much because there’s nothing anyone can do about it except for me.  To speak of it, gives others the heavy feeling that they must buoy my spirits by speaking words of encouragement and reiterating that everything is fine when quite frankly, they have no clue and neither do I.

It bugs me.  I know it makes them feel like they are helping and I agree that they are trying to help.  But honestly, I’ve been down this road so very many times in over 12 years when I was diagnosed with breast cancer that I just keep it to myself now.  I hide away for a few days until the results are in and the anxiety blows over.  I know the anxiety doesn’t help.  I remind myself not to waste good precious hours with being preoccupied with what ifs and trying to plan for them.  Because nobody knows ~ that’s the bottom line.

And wasting these precious happy hours worrying about that darn ‘what if’ is unproductive and truly ludicrous because it won’t change the result.  It only mars the present.  Does that make sense to you?  It makes great common sense to me, but that doesn’t mean that there are moments when I don’t topple into the rabbit hole of doubt and despair.  Because I’d be a liar if I said I didn’t.  But what I do, is I find that repeating the mantra, “there are presents in presence” helps to change the channel in my brain and switch the activity focus on the now instead of the what if’s.

What do you do when you’re waiting for an answer?  For a diagnosis?  For the results of a test?

Do you succumb to the worry game?  Or do you have special way of not wasting precious time and keeping yourself in the moment of bliss?  I’d love to hear from you.  We can all help and connect by sharing our secrets!  We’re in this together.  We’ve all had to wait for something.  How did you handle it?  How do you handle waiting?

Please share!

Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

Shine On!


P.S. Coincidence?  As I was writing this post, I got a phone call from my oncologist notifying me that my tumor marker numbers are high and over normal.  They are hoping it is a lab mistake but to be sure, I need to be rested.  Now the wait is increased by another week with the anxiety increase that there could be something brewing.  I guess I really have to walk my talk now.  Please send love and strength.

P.P.S.  I found this excerpt when I googled what Tom Petty meant when he wrote “The Waiting”  ~ Petty: “That was a song that took a long time to write. Roger McGuinn swears he told me the line – about the waiting being the hardest part – but I think I got the idea from something Janis Joplin said on television. I had the chorus very quickly, but I had a very difficult time piecing together the rest of the song. It’s about waiting for your dreams and not knowing if they will come true. I’ve always felt it was an optimistic song.”*

*Thanks to SongFacts