Mental Health Series #4

Mental Health Series #4

Fast forward one month to my first psychologist visit. My anxiety was so high I could barely swallow- it felt like my heart was in my throat. I was given a stack of papers to read through and sign and check off all these boxes for symptoms. I honestly felt like I was checking off every single box. I started questioning myself. Am I just faking this? Are they going to think I am just making this all up? Does everyone check off this many boxes?

Finally I got back to the room. Immediately she asks me how I am feeling. She noticed my feet constantly moving and she must have sensed my anxiety coming into the room. We got past the pleasantries... the "thank you for coming in, I know this is not easy" part of things and she starts look at my symptoms.

She asks when it all started and I explained everything. She started asking me more specifics about my symptoms. The periods of restlessness, the excess energy I was having, the poor memory and concentration, the anxiety attacks, the periods of inactivity. I was feeling so overwhelmed. 'She's just going to tell me I am beyond help' I thought to myself.

Of course, that never happened. She recommended a work book to get and read through. Something to help teach me coping mechanisms. She mentioned some trends she noticed with my answers and dug a little deeper asking me about the swings of my energy level. With having a fit bit I was able to actually pull up my "proof" so to speak, showing distinct patterns. A week of high activity (think- 18k steps a day) and 4 days of almost none (3k steps a day). There was a clear pattern and cycle there.

My first appointment flew by so fast. And though I know I needed it, I left feeling more scared and confused than before I went in. She had given me a list of possible diagnoses to rule out in our next visit. I felt so small. Already walking out of that office the labels were hanging over my head and haunting me.

Erin BerryComment