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Kicking Out A Freeloader

August 31, 2018

They scheduled me for a physical. I don’t know why they scheduled me for a physical. It’s a good thing that I don’t get anxious about physicals. Because, I called them about anxiety.

I hate not being able to do something. Especially if it’s something I think I should be able to do. I have severe ADHD. It’s a thing. I had to discover that as an adult. My childhood makes so much more sense now. ADHD doesn’t define me, but it does affect me. Caffeine is my drug of choice. That’s ironic, considering that as a practicing Mormon I don’t drink coffee or tea.

I have gotten pretty good at identifying when my ADHD is making me a little crazy. A Coke, or an “Energy” packet in a bottle of water typically get me back on track.

But, this was different. This was . . .out of control. I had a general feeling of dread. My boss asked me to attend a meeting in Vicksberg with him. I worried it was so he could fire me, or at least reprimand me. Of course, it wasn’t true. A couple months ago I had a panic attack on a plane. I never have panic attacks.

Something was going on. I was trying to complete some online education classes. I had six left. Three of them were writing classes. It got so bad I couldn’t read the syllabus. I couldn’t even think about the courses without my hands literally shaking.

I’m fairly introspective. I don’t do anything at work, for example, without first thinking it through and being deliberate. If I’m sad, I generally know what set me off. But, this was different.

I did my normal “introspective” thing. But, when I thought about why I might be avoiding the classes, I got. . .nothing. Or if I got anything it was dread. Fear. Terror. And the shakes.

Eventually, I was reading an interview that Tom Arnold gave. In it he described being diagnosed with Anxiety. And he described me to a T.

The first step in solving a problem is naming it. My problem was named Anxiety. As I got to know him, I realized that he’s been around for awhile. He’s been living rent free in my head for months.

Friends online offered their own perspective. I discovered that my Anxiety was different than literally everyone elses. But, we all had pieces in common. They also encouraged me to not try to fight this fight alone.

They needn’t have worried. I’m a big believer in doctors, drugs and therapy. Today was steps one and two. My doctor perscribed Lexapro. We’ll give it a month and see how it works. Next step is therapy.

Sounds like you’ve been dealing with this for quite a while.

Yeah, he’s been living rent free in my head.

Well, we’ll figure out how to make him start paying rent.

Actually, I’m hoping to evict him.

Even better.

I’ve lived with him for so long, I’m anxious to figure out what life without him is like. But, that’s not causing anxiety.

The end

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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