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The Past Me, the Present Me

By mid of November, our plan was counting 3 more therapy sessions to go. I had been feeling good for months, but there was an image that was still hurting pretty bad every time it surfaced: it was the memory of those awful days, in which my worst anxiety had kept my body trapped inside my house and my life trapped inside my head. My therapist welcomed me with her usual smile: “Today we can address those memories, by going back to EMDR.” [1] We had used EMDR for the first couple of sessions, then spontaneously moved to a more…

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Live by the Plan, die by the Plan

One of the first necessities I remember acknowledging in front of my therapist was “I need a plan”. We were talking about the Xanax I had been prescribed to help me relax a bit before going to bed and my reluctance to even try it. I had thousands of reasons why I didn’t want to open that little bottle: fear of dependence first of all, fear of losing control over my real-self, fear of being transformed into someone else by those drops, fear of starting it off without knowing if, when and how I could have quit it. So I…

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When worlds collide

Dizziness has proved to be the most perduring of all my symptoms so far. More than one year after my black-out, from time to time, the world around me still begins spinning around. Honestly, I don’t even know whether I’ll ever get rid of this reaction. Not that I actually have the need to. I’ve experienced my dizziness in a bunch of different situations up to now: while walking, while running, while driving and in several other whiles. It turns out it’s no longer that dangerous and, therefore, no longer that scary. During that lapse of time, lasting about 20-30…

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The inevitability of non-linearity

I really wonder what you are expecting from a post with such a nerdy title. Anyway, don’t panic, there won’t be any philosophy or quantum physics involved; only, as usual, the story of my journey through (and with) anxiety. As you may have learned from my posts so far, my healing process after my breakdown has seemed pretty smooth, even if it has taken some time, the need to discover and use several new “tools” and, most of all, quite a huge effort. In these months I’ve been reading and listening to hundreds of opinions about how non-linear the healing…

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Mi analysis es tu analysis

As I began to love myself, I freed myself of anything that is no good for my health – food, people, things, situations, and everything that drew me down and away from myself. At first I called this attitude a healthy egoism. Today I know it is Love of Oneself.  ― Charlie Chaplin When I summed up the events that had led me to breaking up with him and explained her how surprised I was about my positive reaction to those events in the following days, my therapist reflected “We can say that he served as a good training ground”.…

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Growing up

I had decided that I was going to break up with him four days before I actually did. It was a Friday night and I was determined to make him give me an explanation about what was going on. We spent the night with two other friends, then, once we were left alone in his car, I told him I couldn’t understand the reason of his sudden detachment and hostility. I explicitly explained to him that I was ready to end up our relationship if that was what he wanted, I repeated him that I wasn’t trying to force him in…

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Quite a long way

Exactly twelve months ago, I was fainting on my floor climaxing months of severe generalized anxiety. Exactly twelve months ago, I decided to start therapy, hoping it could help me find a way out of all of that suffering. Today I’m here, the worst of anxiety is gone, I’ve met new friends and dumped some others, meds are being gradually reduced, I’m jogging weekly and I’ve just asked my boss for a raise. I don’t know about tomorrow, but today, well, today I rock.     If you’ve stumbled upon this page and reached the bottom of it, you’ve just made…

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Better late than never

Despite the romance going on, I still knew the guy I had in front of me; I still knew he was the one who rushes and pushes himself into new experiences with surprising perseverance and then withdraws with even greater dullness, as soon as he smells the risk of a dream come true. But the explanation I had always given to myself for his behaviour was that he gave up that frequently and that easily, just when he realized he was going to fail. I had always deemed it a self-preservation thing, through which he protected himself from the pain…

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Fine tuning

By mid-June my relationship with brand-new boyfriend was already flying high, he quickly winded up to be my main priority throughout the days. He literally was my first thought as I opened my eyes in the morning and my last thought before I fell asleep. And the same was happening to him; “I’m thinking of you all the time” he told me one day, while I was driving in my car. I had never felt so positively irrational in all my life, but my fears were still there and, luckily enough, so was my therapist. “I’m afraid it’s not going…

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A lot of firsts

“How do you understand when anxiety is finally over?” I’ve asked myself this question many times and let me be frank: I have no answer to that.   Nevertheless few months ago I casually stumbled upon the following quote and I believe I couldn’t have found a better way to describe my feelings:   Once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won’t be…

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