Friday, January 18, 2013

Unexpected Side Effects

So y'all remember I got his by a car almost 7 months ago right? Of course you do, who would forget that? Oh that's right, I do. Seriously, I forget all the time. I will be walking down the stairs and think to myself, why does my left leg hurt so much? It'll take a second for me to come to my senses and think, maybe it's because you got hit by a freaking car!

Ever since I was hit I've been striving to be "normal". I was SO excited when I finally reached the point where I wasn't limping any longer so that no one would ask me what was wrong, or what happened to my leg, etc.

That being said, all throughout my recovery I've been focusing so much on the physical aspects of my recovery-in my mind running again was all that mattered. It's all that has mattered. But other aspects have started creeping up on me, things I never thought I would have to prepare myself for.

I still don't remember much about the details of the accident. But apparently some part of me does (or at least that's what my therapist says) because I've been experiencing some unexpected side effects.

Panic Attacks. I didn't know they even existed before my accident, now I'm having one every week or so. I have them in the middle of the night, in the shower, while I'm folding laundry, etc. I'm constantly looking over my shoulder and jumping at every little sound. I can't take a shower or watch t.v. downstairs unless Mojo is home with me. It's bad guys, really bad.

I've been meeting with my therapist on a regular basis and a lot of people have told me I should start a drug therapy of some kind. Here's the thing, I hate drugs. I really hate them. I spent 4 months on a regime of 60+ drugs a day. They wrecked havoc on my body.

So drug therapy is out, and honestly my therapist didn't even recommend it. She knows I would immediately say no. So we've been living with this day to day and it's starting to get really annoying, to say the least.

I've been getting emails and comments from so many readers asking for updates on my recovery. Honestly-I've wanted to write this post for a few months now, but I just haven't really known what to say. I've never really struggled with any kind of mental anything. I'm fumbling around in the dark with this and haven't really known what to do. So, when people ask how my recovery is going I say it's great. I'm walking again and slowly working to being able to run again-and I just don't mention this other-not so glamourous part of my recovery.

In a couple of weeks my therapist and I will be starting a few exercises to help me slowly start and relive the day of my accident. I know it will help, I really do, but I'm not really looking forward to it.


For more information on the accident as well as updates check my Road to Recovery Page


Kali J. Drane said...

First of all my dear, you rock for being able to put this out there! Second of all, you are NOT alone. There are millions of people out there suffering silently from some sort of mental struggles. You have been trough a traumatic experience! It's okay to be scared and it's okay to have the feelings or the worries you do.They may not seem real to everyone else but they are real to you. Remember that. Don't beat yourself up for it. I've struggled with similar issues and have some good tips if you ever want to chat. You know where to find me... You've over come so much, you've got this girl!!!!

Steph @ Crafting in the Rain said...

I don't really have any advice or help for you, but here's one giant cyber hug!!! I'm glad you're surrounded by people who want to help.

Beth said...

Hi! I've been reading your blog for a couple of months but haven't commented before now. I admire you for how far you've come after your accident. While I've never been through that type of physical trauma, I know what you mean by the unexpected side effects of a hard event. I'm getting over PTSD myself and just wanted to encourage you that you will get through it and come out on top! It may take time, but you can do it! Feel free to email me if you want to chat. I'll be happy to help in anyway I can. I will be praying for you!

Maureen Hayes said...


I used to suffer from panic attacks, so in that sense, I understand what you are going through. I cannot marine NOT having some sort of post traumatic reaction given what you went through. I am so glad you have a capable therapist and are working through this. I know it is really hard to be patient, because panic attacks are very scary, unpleasant and in general SUCK. . . But try to patient with yourself. You have overcome so much already and you will overcome this too. As others have offered, I am here if you need to talk and you will continue to remain in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

I do not suffer from panic attacks, but some members of my family suffer from anxiety. My mom had great success with hypnotherapy for performance anxiety, and that might be something you could look into for PTSD. She said she didn't feel like she was being hypnotized, just talking about her feelings with a therapist that knew how to calm the brain down so she could focus while performing. Your current therapy will help, too.

You might also try aromatherapy. DoTerra oils are wonderful and I have some blends for anxiety/worry that really take the edge off of my fears and help me thing a little calmer and clearer.

And remember, people with mental/emotional issues are NOT weak. Sometimes we thing we should just be able to snap out these challenges and just 'deal' with them, but this type of thinking is not productive. When I get frustrated with my body (and my mind) and what it will not allow me to do, I try to remember to be grateful for all the wonderful things it helps me to do. I have a wonderful life and family and it is such a gift even when it's hard.

You are wonderful and strong and you will get through this little by little.

Megan Camilla said...

I've never commented on your blog before but I have been following your story. I have an anxiety disorder. It sucks, but it is manageable WITHOUT medications. I have watched too many people in my life become dependent on their medications and myself even for some other things that I didn't want to do it for my anxiety. I wanted to learn to control it on my own. It started out as test related and then turned to stress related in high school. But as I went to therapy, we discovered that I have been dealing with this anxiety disorder all my life. The trick is discovering what your triggers are and it's not always easy or pleasant to learn what they are. They may seem embarrassing or minute and ridiculous but they are real and we have to be dealt with them. I learned that weather, tornados, thunderstorms are my biggest triggers. Then loud noises crowds, chaos.... We went into a restaurant one night and there were so many people that we could hardly get to the desk to find out the wait time before I grabbed onto my husband and said "get me out now its coming" and we got out just in time. It takes time is all I'm trying to say. I'm 24 years old and I'm still learning and being patient with myself. If you have questions you can talk to me if you'd like. You can do this. Husbands are amazing. Lean on yours. You can do this I know you can!!!

marissa | Rae Gun Ramblings said...

oh Kari, I'm sorry to hear about this. That really sucks. I have no experience so no tips or anything but I'll definitely be praying for you friend. Hang in there

Meg said...

Kari- I saw your kitchen post on instagram today and it lead me to check out your blog. Just know that you are not alone. I've struggled with anxiety and panic attacks after having both of my kids (post partum) and its aAWFUL. Panic attacks are the worst! The first time I had one I didn't even know what was happening to me. I told Dave he needed to take me to the ER because I thought I was having a heart attack. I'm actually taking a low dose of Zoloft right now just to take the edge off, but I still panic every now and then, usually at night when I'm trying to fall asleep. So... I totally know what you are going through. And I want to tell you that it will eventually get better. Even if you do have to take medication, just do it. It will make your life a lot easier. And don't feel bad about it. This isn't your fault, and you're not "crazy" as is the stigma for any type of mental disorder. It can happen to anyone, just like diabetes, cancer, etc. And especially after a traumatic event, PTSD is so common. Hang in there! I hope you get feeling better! -Meg

Jill @ Create.Craft.Love. said...

You are a strong and amazing woman! When I was a freshman in college they found a tumor in my femur and I had major reconstruction surgery. 18 months of physical therapy and then the panic attacks began. I had no idea what was wrong with me. I felt like I was dying or going crazy or maybe a little of both. You have been through SOOOOO much. It is only natural that your brain is still trying to protect you. A combination of cognitive behavioral therapy and antidepressants have helped me overcome them. I am happy to report that I have them rarely - maybe once every 6 months. Hang in there. It really does get better. Big hugs!

J. Justin Draper said...

Panic attacks are the worst and I know I haven't even experienced them to the degree that many people do. You are so amazingly strong and brave. I wanted to second what aonymous said about using the doTERRA essential oils. They've been a huge blessing in my life. I got A LOT of much needed help through using Wild Orange for my anxiety - I call it my orange crack. All natural and you can use as much of it as you need to. I hope you find what helps you that you can tie in with your therapy. :D Best of luck.