Tonight I want to share something very personal to me. And I figure it’s okay, since the few people who do read this blog care about me enough to not judge me. Or maybe you do judge me. But whatevs.
I’ve decided on my New Years Resolution for 2015.
It’s not losing weight or eating more greens or being a better person. Well, those too, but they aren’t my number one.
This year I’m going to overcome my Emetophobia.
Emetophobia is the irrational fear of vomit.
I know, it sounds silly. I mean, no one likes throwing up. But it’s a part of life. It happens. And there’s a small, rational part of my brain that knows that.
But the other, larger portion of my brain is filled with fear and anxiety in regards to the V word.
It is something I have battled with all my life. It’s a sort of panic disorder, but instead of having panic episodes where I’m freaking out over my heart rate or whatever it is that happens to people with normal panic attacks, I start over-analyzing every feeling in my stomach, throat, chest, etc.
It’s not like, just a general fear. I’m scared of spiders, the ocean, and serial killers, but none of those things keep me up at night.
I used to lay in bed literally every night, shaking like a leaf, just terrified thinking I could be sick.
If I’m over-exhausted, it sends me into panic mode. Because of that one time that I was so exhausted I got sick.
If I get a cold sweat, it reminds me of that other time I got sick and sends me into panic mode.
If my stomach is the slightest bit upset, if I’m sitting in the mothers lounge and moms start talking about their kids puking at home, or if, heaven forbid, I realized I’ve been exposed to the dreaded norovirus, I’m in panic mode.
You will never find someone who washes their hands as thoroughly or bleaches their kitchen as much as me after dealing with raw meat. Because heaven forbid we get food poisoning.
I was homeschooled growing up, and then tried going to public school for a little bit in 4th grade. One day a girl came back to class after being out for a week, telling everyone how she was miserably sick with the stomach flu for a few days. The next day I cleaned out my desk and went back to homeschooling.
I had an eating disorder in middle school and my freshman year of high school. I basically only ate enough to get by. I figured the less I ate, the less likely I was to throw up.
And I don’t wear turtle necks anymore. You guessed it– I threw up wearing one that one time.
This irrational fear has controlled my life for far too long. I’m a mother now and need to be ready and able to handle the day that little Jake gets sick. And when he does, I cannot run into the other room, plug my ears, and sing as loud as I can to avoid it (like I did when my pregnant sister came home to visit one time).
I know that faith and fear cannot exist in the same place, so I’m choosing to purge this from my life, and allow my Savior to help me. This year, I am going to study His Atonement, and use it to help me improve my quality of life. I need this to be gone. I need to be free.
And hey, if anyone reading this struggles with anything similar, feel free to message me. I’d love to have/give support in overcoming this or other anxiety issues.
So here’s to a new year, a fresh start, and overcoming fears.