Thursday, 4 March 2010

Rollercoaster agoraphobia

Since my last, somewhat bleak report of Marie's level of agoraphobia (you can see it here), things have changed.  As they do.  Regularly.

The most important change is in Marie's attitude.  She is now in positive mood.  Looking forward to a better future.  Here's what she has been doing -

  • Doing the school run.  For the first time ever, Marie is doing almost all of the school runs.  I had been doing them for 5 years.
  • Taking our dog (Blaze) out for exercise.  Just Marie and Blaze - no safe person.  Okay, so all she does is parks her car at a large field and waits for the dog to walk himself, but while she's there, she's been trying to move further away from her car.  So far she has only managed a couple of paces, but at the start of the year, she couldn't even get to the field on her own!
  • Driving to nearby villages.  She has managed to drive 3 miles away from home with the children in the car.  
  • Going to shops by herself, and seeing how far away from the door she can get.
  • Going to shops with the children.  Marie feels safer with the children than alone, so she uses this to go to shops which she can't get to on her own.
  • Visiting friends.  Driving to see them on her own.
Here is a pic of Marie with Blaze, about 4m away from her car!  She can do this without me being there :0)  (We've been having nice, sunny weather for quite a while, now.)

On the family front, Marie has been spending more time with our children.  When she's anxious, she withdraws from them.  She also gets up every morning and shares in the morning routines with the children and me.

On the business front, Marie has rekindled her interest in her jewellry business.  It is still a very small enterprise, but every time Marie takes an interest in it, it blossoms.  This is her business, so I take almost no part in it.  This way, Marie can see the results of her own labours.

As I've mentioned before, the enormity of the task of reinventing herself sometimes appears daunting to Marie, but she now has some victories under her belt to encourage her to progress.

Yes, Marie is riding the rollercoaster of her agoraphobia...and we're rolling, in a somewhat leisurely fashion, downhill at the moment.  I'm sure that there are more, difficult, uphill stretches to negotiate...but right now, we're enjoying the good times!


Crystal Jigsaw said...

This is very encouraging news. I hope it continues and Marie's positive look on life carries on.

CJ xx

♥ Kathy said...

That's just awesome! I hope she continues to be positive!

Em said...

im glad marie is picking up. its such a difficult task to do, but im glad she has you to help and understand. good luck

Nechtan said...

Hi Robert,

That is good news and I am sure Marie feels all the better for it- all the family will be benefiting. Its a good variety of things to be doing from essentials of the school run to her own business and visiting friends. I hope she goes from strength to strength from here.

All the best


ladythinker said...

So lovely to visit and find a positive post. Long may this continue.

Funnily I have just written a draft of our latest news and title it Roller Coaster Ride - will have to think of another title before posting it.

Best wishes to all.

Ethereal Highway said...

This is wonderful news, Robert. It is very encouraging to be able to come here to read and share in it.

Robert said...

Thank you everyone for your kind and encouraging comments.

Ladythinker - Sorry about ruining the planned title of your next post ;0(

Clarissa said...

I suffer from anxiety so I know a little of what she is going through. I am glad she is doing positive things and going a little further every time!

Sapphyre said...

Good to see some positivity :) (Who knows if that's a real word? lol)

Gives us all a bit of hope that there are easy times to come as well as hard times we've been having...

Michelle said...

Sunny days help. It's really key that she keep doing what she's doing now and never back off. I've been walking the trail, and I have memories of venturing a few yards onto the trail, breaking out into a cold sweat and turning back. Now I literally can't even relate to my old self in that particular regard. I'll have to remind myself of this on long car trips! ;-)

Fwiw, exercise is helping me more than meds ever did. I feel better withdrawing from Ativan and exercising than I did doing very light exercise and taking my regular dose. It's an incredible antidepressant, which really helps anxiety.

Does she retreat more when it is cloudy? If so, maybe look into full-spectrum lights? I really struggle when the weather is bad.

Kaci said...

Good to hear things are going well! That's always so encouraging to hear and I am glad Marie is doing so well!