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Holiday Anxiety


[Sh...]

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Wondering if anyone else is struggling with the thought of having to show up for things for the holidays?  I'm almost 11 months c/t off Ativan, and seem to be getting worse rather than better.

 

Three years ago, I hosted 30 people for Thanksgiving dinner.  Did all the cooking, cleaning, decorating, etc.  Today, I'm shaking like a leaf and wondering if I can manage to walk the two blocks to my daughter's house, and then stay long enough to eat anything.

 

I also have a difficult condition - cervical dystonia, which means my head yanks repeatedly to the right side.  Add to this the terror of w/d, and I'm a mess.  My brother-in-law, who lives two hours away, is hosting another T-day dinner on Saturday, and at this point I can't imagine getting through the drive and again, sitting to eat with people.  I'm not doing well with conversations with others these days; they seem to jack up my central nervous system and make the tremoring worse.

 

Christmas feels completely overwhelming...  Anyone else?  I wish I could just go to sleep and wake up after Jan. 1st.

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[d9...]

Hi ShakyJake!

 

Yes! I've had similar feelings! Ever since I quit klonopin last July the panic attacks at night were my very worst symptom but I also hate large gatherings and social commitments - I've avoided or bailed out of so many dinners, parties, etc., and the Big Stressful Holidays are rough for sure.

 

I don't have any good advice but completely understand the feeling. I will say this - nothing I've managed to do socially was ever actually as bad as I thought it would be. I always gave myself permission and the ability to leave a gathering early if I wanted to - and sometimes I did and sometimes I didn't. Just knowing I had that option made it more bearable.

 

Good luck!

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Thank you for the reminder that I only need to stay as long as feels do-able!  In so many ways, I want things to be as they were.... got to make these changes for the time being.  How I pray to be in better shape for holidays next year!
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[d8...]
Hi. Yeah, the Holidays...I'm hibernating, avoiding social scene. Possibly going out for coffee...Playing music and eating whatever I put together; healthy. Being grateful for being off Xanax for 9 months. Hiking with my dog. Peaceful day.
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Yes, me, skipping today's thanksgiving family gathering. I just started liquid taper at 1 mg of diazepam and hope to be off early this year and God willing enjoy next year's holiday season. It has been exhausting to go anywhere lately...I too feel weak just carrying on a conversation. Miss the days of feeling much better than this. Will decide about Christmas when the time comes.

 

BUT we still have much to be thankful for, happy Thanksgiving!

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I am totally with you on this

Just seeing xmas lights going up this weekend caused me to panic

Yesterday my husband and I went out to dinner for 1.5 hours

I didnt have much to say

But I got through it -- and I dreaded it all week

I also have developed a very painful lumbar spine condition since my taper ended

I am hoping it is w/d and not the degenerative disc disease and arthritis I have had

It makes it hard to sit comfortably and that coupled with the agitation just about puts me over the top

I am so dreading xmas...I posted on another post that I would rather go back to rehab then face xmas.

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Shakey Jake, I've been experiencing holiday anxiety, depression and regret as well.  I am now 14 months off of Klonopin and Paxil but this week has been very rough.  (By the way, Paxil caused Cervical Dystonia in me years ago and that is why I was put on Klonopin as well as Botox shots beginning in 2008, so I can relate to your condition).
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Shakey Jake, I've been experiencing holiday anxiety, depression and regret as well.  I am now 14 months off of Klonopin and Paxil but this week has been very rough.  (By the way, Paxil caused Cervical Dystonia in me years ago and that is why I was put on Klonopin as well as Botox shots beginning in 2008, so I can relate to your condition).

 

Fishingguy, how are you coping with the dystonia?  I'm finding it tough to think about holiday shopping, etc.  May buy only gift cards for my loveys.  Had a Botox treatment in early October that didn't work, so yanking is quite severe, which means holiday events sound pretty daunting.

One of the challenges is that benzodiazepines can calm the tremors that one can have with dystonia (I've had dystonia four years, but just developed the tremors this past year).  I fear the Ativan may have caused my dystonia, and won't go anywhere near it again.

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Actually, the dystonia is not as bad as it used to be when I was on Paxil.  All SSRI's (and anti-depressants in general) have caused dystonia in me.  The main thing that I've been dealing with is the extreme muscle weakness caused by years of being on Klonopin.  It's been a while since I've had the Botox shots but they were always effective for me.  Right now, I'm pretty much home-bound until I get my strength back, so I don't get out often to shop, etc.

 

At any rate, I certainly hope your condition improves.

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Actually, the dystonia is not as bad as it used to be when I was on Paxil.  All SSRI's (and anti-depressants in general) have caused dystonia in me.  The main thing that I've been dealing with is the extreme muscle weakness caused by years of being on Klonopin.  It's been a while since I've had the Botox shots but they were always effective for me.  Right now, I'm pretty much home-bound until I get my strength back, so I don't get out often to shop, etc.

 

At any rate, I certainly hope your condition improves.

 

Thanks so much for your response, and I'm sorry for the weakness you experience.  Praying that we both see some improvement soon.  Being homebound is no fun.... life's out there waiting to be lived! 

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Actually, the dystonia is not as bad as it used to be when I was on Paxil.  All SSRI's (and anti-depressants in general) have caused dystonia in me.  The main thing that I've been dealing with is the extreme muscle weakness caused by years of being on Klonopin.  It's been a while since I've had the Botox shots but they were always effective for me.  Right now, I'm pretty much home-bound until I get my strength back, so I don't get out often to shop, etc.

 

At any rate, I certainly hope your condition improves.

 

Thanks so much for your response, and I'm sorry for the weakness you experience.  Praying that we both see some improvement soon.  Being homebound is no fun.... life's out there waiting to be lived!

 

Thanks.  I appreciate it!

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Felt like this the 5 years of taper and the last year. It has changed with month 5 after being off. Give it time, buddy... :smitten:

 

This is very encouraging; thank you so much.

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I am just over 12 months right now and I hosted a thanksgiving dinner with 14 adults and 4 children. I broke up with my GF last January after living together for 12 years, and this was something we did every year, for people who don't have local families and other friends. It was her idea so I made her buy all the food and cook, I bought alcohol but most people brought their own and they also brought food. She always cooked and I always cleaned so we did the same thing. I dreaded it, wished I did not do it, but when it happened it was good to see everyone and it was fun.

 

I am not completely healed by anyones definition and I'm still struggling but I have noticed it has gotten a little better, obviously since this thing happened. Last year I was so bad off I went to some family functions but I popped in and then left immediately. I'm hoping this year I can reconnect some with my family, I have tried to steer clear of them because they don't understand what this is. They mean well but you know how your family is right, or maybe yours is not as dysfunctional as mine. I hope not.

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I am just over 12 months right now and I hosted a thanksgiving dinner with 14 adults and 4 children. I broke up with my GF last January after living together for 12 years, and this was something we did every year, for people who don't have local families and other friends. It was her idea so I made her buy all the food and cook, I bought alcohol but most people brought their own and they also brought food. She always cooked and I always cleaned so we did the same thing. I dreaded it, wished I did not do it, but when it happened it was good to see everyone and it was fun.

 

I am not completely healed by anyones definition and I'm still struggling but I have noticed it has gotten a little better, obviously since this thing happened. Last year I was so bad off I went to some family functions but I popped in and then left immediately. I'm hoping this year I can reconnect some with my family, I have tried to steer clear of them because they don't understand what this is. They mean well but you know how your family is right, or maybe yours is not as dysfunctional as mine. I hope not.

 

This is very encouraging, thank you so much for sharing.  You did amazingly well to host so many people!  I'm afraid I am at the stage you were last year. 

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I have sick for so many years and got PANIC as soon as my boyfriend started to plan his holidays.

I had panic attacks when I knew I had to join a family meeting.

 

This year I saw so many people again that I had not seen for years.

With every month it got better.

 

In the last year of the taper I made a trip on my own, only my dog with me - that was the greatest gift I made myself ever - and it worked.

 

Now I am dreaming on traveling ALL the time. Because my home is so noisy. If I had the money I would sit in a plane all the time. Can you imagine that? Its so crazy!!!!

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I didn't go to the family Christmas event last year, and I probably won't go this year.

 

It's far too much.

 

Instead I went and spent time with my Jewish and Muslim friends.

 

No joke! They are very happy to have me around even though I am completely out of it!

 

Just think to yourself, there's other ways to spread holiday cheer, and if you just need to spread

it to yourself by spending time alone, then that's fine too! Don't let anyone make you feel guilty

just wish them the best.

 

 

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I didn't go to the family Christmas event last year, and I probably won't go this year.

 

It's far too much.

 

Instead I went and spent time with my Jewish and Muslim friends.

 

No joke! They are very happy to have me around even though I am completely out of it!

 

Just think to yourself, there's other ways to spread holiday cheer, and if you just need to spread

it to yourself by spending time alone, then that's fine too! Don't let anyone make you feel guilty

just wish them the best.

 

thats right!!! I had the best christmas evenings EVER as soon as I decided not to do what others wanted me to do. one christmas I spent with a good friend, one I was alone - and I wasn't sad about it (fast food, TV, pajama...wonderful)

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