When you go through the loss of a baby or child you expect to go through many different emotions.
I think that you expect to feel sad and angry and I also get that you can block it out almost denying it has happened.
The one thing I didn’t expect to feel was anxious.
I associated anxiety with a feeling you get when you are waiting to take a test or waiting for your results.
I never really understood the power of anxiety.
Now I totally understand where anxiety fits into grief, and how it can happen at any time after your loss and when you are least expecting it.
Anxiety is a crafty little bugger that can creep up on you, when you think you are doing ok, and slap you round the face.
It is also an emotion that anyone affected by grief or loss can experience and often men will say that they feel anxious rather than depressed.
The effects of anxiety are different for everyone and a symptom that I might experience may not be felt by someone else.
I have found that I get periods of time when I panic about anything and everything and get this feeling in my chest that something is about to go wrong.
I can be driving along feeling totally fine when suddenly I feel my mouth going dry or I am clenching my teeth.
Another day it can be a headache that just won’t go away or a stomach that won’t stop churning.
I can understand why people often think they are ill rather than suffering with anxiety as it gives you real physical symptoms, often going to the GP with lots of different ailments.
It can often be misdiagnosed by GP’s as hypochondria, but if you have a good GP that will take the time to talk to you or find out your history then you can get the right support you need.
In today’s society there is a lot of talk about mindfulness and I will admit that I am a bit sceptical; however I am also of the thinking that if it helps someone then it has to be ok.
I think it is the word Mindfulness I find strange as when you look into it it has been around for years and has been called many different things e.g relaxation
The one thing I do know is that if you are suffering from anxiety then you do need to get some support.
That support can come in many ways and might just be a drink down the pub with a friend to attending a formal relaxation session.
Whatever you finds works for you is the right way forward for you.
We have a lot of families that come to us or contact us and after talking with them you can see that they too are struggling with anxiety as well as their grief.
It can be totally debilitating for them and can lead to some even struggling to get out of their house.
Some have described how they have been going about their everyday things, like shopping, and suddenly have had this overwhelming feeling of panic and have had to just leave everything and get out of the shop or have just stood there and started to cry inconsolably.
Just remember that whatever you are experiencing is totally ok and normal for someone going through a loss or bereavement.
There is no time limit on it and you could find that it can suddenly affect you years down the line, this again is ok.
I would say to you if you are experiencing any of these feelings to please try and seek help even if it is not from your doctor.
Give us a call or drop us a line as we are always here to support you.