I've lived with chronic anxiety for more than 30 years now (I'm 54). To say it hasn't been a major impact on my life would certainly be an understatement. Things are never really perfect, but they are manageable. I have to say one of the worst things has to be the anxiety that hits me when I am sleeping. Like clockwork, about 2 hours after going to bed it will wake me up and I'll end up in a full blown panic attack after about 5 minutes. It takes about another 20-30 minutes to settle down. When I was younger, this would repeat all night (in much shorter intervals) as I tried to sleep and it got to the point I was afraid to go to sleep. And it happened almost every night... Now I can go months, maybe even a few years without it happening. It's mostly under control - and I say 'mostly'. Yesterday evening I was having very bad anxiety, but I still slept ok. Tonight I was very tired and went to bed around 11:30. So 3am rolls around and I wake up. I know what is happening, what is coming. It's like being tied to the tracks with a freight train barreling down on me. I can rationalize to myself all I want that I'm going to be ok and it will pass... I feel absolutely horrible though... Sometimes playing a game like candy crush on my tablet helps because it distracts my mind with something else. Tonight I ended up going out for a drive until I started feeling better. Then I came home and here I am, still up at 4am.
I'm bothered by a few things, but I am not sure if they contribute to my anxiety. I'm concerned someone I know didn't survive covid.. I only found out 2 days ago and their business was closed today when it should have been open. Not a good sign... Work has been a major source of stress for me. I'm ready to retire, but not financially secure enough to retire long term without going back to work at some time. I think about taking a long break, like a year from work because I just need to detach myself from that completely - at least for a while.
Pinball is one thing that helps me still feel sane in this crazy world. I've made some good friends along the way and have had the chance to do some really fun stuff too. I'd probably play a few games now, except I live in a condo and I don't think my neighbors would appreciate that at 4:30am.
I didn't need to write this, but I thought I would share my experience for anyone interested enough to read. Maybe a few of you know all too well what anxiety and panic attacks are like. I don't feel like writing more so I'll end my message here. I'm doing ok now.. Will watch a bit of tv, maybe eat something and try to get some rest in a while.