Do You Journal?

“Do you write in a journal before bed?”, he said it will all the seriousness needed yesterday. Several answers screamed through my head before I blurted out “I use a CBT app, (it’s called  Moodnotes, if you have iOS/Apple products)on my phone for when I wake up in the middle of the night having a panic attack.” He simply replied, “Maybe you should journal before you go to bed.”

It seems so simple. I did it for years. I think back over the several paper journals I had, over the LiveJournal I kept in my late teens/early twenties. Then one day I just stopped doing the one thing I enjoyed the most. I stopped writing. I’m not sure why, I’m not even sure if there was a real life reason.

‘No one wants to read this. It’s just a bunch of complaining and rambling’ 

It’s not for them. It’s for me. If it helps me sort through the craziness in my head write it. Simple answer back to the self-doubt monster that resides in my head. 

‘They will all think you are insane if you share all of those thoughts’

That’s what the private button is for. I don’t have to let people see all of me. 

‘Who really wants to know about what life is like with a couple of autoimmune conditions, get over it already?’

Uh shush, there are plenty of people who either have similar conditions or who love someone with similar conditions who want to read stories about people living and making the best out of life while they still can. 

Those are just three of the arguments I have been having with myself during my absence from my blog recently. 

It was resolved yesterday at a doctor’s appointment with my PCP to have my INR check, and to talk about my anxiety medication.  I’m at monthly INR checks now, even though my INR keeps dipping low and we aren’t exactly sure why. Could be the shots I’ve had to get in my hips due to bursitis (fun stories there…uhm no), could be the increased dose of Azathioprine. Or the weather, stress, or who really knows.

The other result of this appointment was a change in my anxiety medication. After two years in a love hate relationship with Mirtazapine I am now beginning a slightly different medication call Venlafaxine, more commonly know as Effexor. He also prescribed Ambien for those nights I can’t get my brain to hush and I need to sleep. I’ve been down the Ambien path before, I know the ins and outs, I’m not too worried about that one. Venlafaxine….I’m just along for the ride for the moment, and hoping it is a better fit than Mirtazpine was in the end.

“Do you journal at bedtime?” No. But I’m going to start attempting to write every day again. Not all the posts will be made public but a lot of them will. It may be me remembering things with mist covered eyes, but I seem to remember being able to cope better during the times when I was keeping some form of journal. So in a month when I check back in… I’ll be able to tell him that I’ve started that process again.

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2 thoughts on “Do You Journal?

  1. I started keeping a Gratitude journal at night before I go to bed, and have added prayer requests too. I think it really helps me when I actually stick with it. I too have a whole box full of hand-written journals and poems in boxes in the attic. Every now and then I’ll open them and go thru them, to give thanks for how far I’ve come, and to remember good times, and mourn for people I’ve loved and lost. I can’t do that very often. But I’m going to try to journal at night, too. We can compare notes in a month. I was thrilled to see this in my Inbox tonight, by the way. I’m glad you are writing again 🙂

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    1. I go through periods where I do gratitude posts, then I start feeling trapped in them because I find it overwhelming at times to always find the good. Especially during flares, and really rough patches with my anxiety and depression. I fully get that’s when I need to do them the most. But its like a switch flips in my brain and I start panicking that they are dumb, or repetitive. I know lame excuses and I should accept it for what it is.

      I can’t say I’m going to journal at night, but I’m going to try to do so daily. It is my hope that by doing so it will allow my brain the same processing as if I did it right before bed. Look forward to comparing notes!
      -N

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