Anxiety is exhausting

I woke up tired this morning.  Exhausted, really.  I was wearing my BiPAP mask all night, so I know it’s from the anxiety that’s built up over the last few days.  Today, I’m fixing that and going back to the full dose of my anxiolytic.  I’ll try to reduce the dose again after my doctor and I have fully prepared me for it as much as possible.  This has not been a pleasant experience.  A year ago, before all the progress had been made and I began doing “normal” things again, I wouldn’t have cared (and didn’t) one way or another.  I just wanted to feel better.  I still want to feel good, but now I want to improve in my climbing ability, which is hindered somewhat by the medication.  Last year, I wanted to feel better.  Now, almost 15 months later, I want to climb better – I want more of it!!!  Climbing makes me feel awesome – I’m happy when I climb – and I want to believe that it can take the place of some of this medicine that I’m on.  Maybe not, though.  Maybe it won’t work that way for me.  I have to try.  Just not right now.  Right now, we’re going to do what we know works well and keep me in an ever-better place in climbing, social life, and routine.  We’re still at a distress tolerance and emotion regulation level with my coping mechanisms and skills.  That’s okay.  These things take time.  I understand.  Mental disorders are not something you can fix or improve by snapping your fingers.  If that were the case, I wouldn’t even have had PTSD!  The best we can do is manage it.  I want to shift some of that management off of medications, which my doctor is on board with.  He’s right, though.  It just isn’t the right time (and may never be), but that doesn’t mean I failed.  I just haven’t succeeded YET.  Whether or not I’m ever able to get off the meds is a mute point right now.  I’m going to get control of the anxiety again with the help of the meds and improve my climbing ability as much as I can day-by-day, hold-by-hold, indefinitely.  I want to climb better.  Nobody’s stopping me except me.  I have to overcome the mental limits that have been set in place for so long and developed into “rules” that really don’t exist.  That takes time and practice.  Though not an easy process, it is doable with my doctor’s help and the help and support of my good climbing buddies.  I’m going to accept their encouragement and run with it!  I will climb better every time I get on the wall because every time I get on the wall, I gain experience.  The older climbers hold that as the invaluable piece and the key to climbing well.  They would know.  I’m not going to give up just because things didn’t work out the way I wanted them to at the moment.  I’m still finding myself.  I will improve my climbing ability, one way or another.  Forward, ho!!!  Climb on!!!

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