Yes this is a blog about horses and being an equestrian, but as I blog about personal situations with my horse my anxiety disorder is something I also feel compelled to write about. Particularly when it’s keeping me from my horse. Now it might not be fair to blame this on my anxiety disorder, instead I should be blaming it on the mild depression that so often goes hand-in-hand with it. Either way, my motivation is at an all time low and while I am desperately waiting to see a doctor to take steps toward improving my situation, I am also struggling to motivate myself to do anything other than go to work and go home. The sad part is, this is the bottom of a very long hill I’ve been sliding down for sometime now. Doing all I could to stop myself from reaching this point.
Even better is I know I’m not alone. According to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America, 40 million adults in the United States suffer from an anxiety disorder. According to ADAA this is 18.1% of the population and makes anxiety disorders the most common mental illness. It’s also not unusual to find someone who suffers with an anxiety disorder will also suffer from depression, in fact the ADAA says it’s one-half who will be diagnosed with both.
I’ve suffered with an anxiety disorder, and depression, since I was somewhere around four. Technically I’m an old pro at this now, right? I’m pretty sure that’s how it works. Because of my lifetime (literally, 22 years now guys) of experience I know what I should do to handle my mental illnesses but that doesn’t always make it easy to do.
I know that calling a doctor isn’t a failure. I know that admitting I need help is not failure. I know that I need to do those things in order to feel better. But damn if it doesn’t feel like failure and doesn’t suck to have to do it all anyways. Particularly when I’m so busy I have trouble finding the time to do things that I actually want to do it. Shocker right? I do not want to go sit in a doctors office on a bi-weekly basis so I can cry about the fact there’s nothing currently wrong with my life. But I’m to the point where that is exactly what I’m going to do.
Because I’m not riding as much as I need to be. I’m too anxious to want to get on Bella and risk passing that along to her. The effort it would take to simply go out there, groom her, tack-up, is almost too much to even comprehend right now. Even typing it out I feel kinda dumb for it, considering that riding is my one major passion in life. But I also have to accept that chemically, I’m just a little off right now.
I’m just grateful that it’s only been a couple of weeks without me riding regularly. I’ve got two weekend plans involving horses and I’m moving Bella to the new barn, probably, in two weeks. I’m really hoping the move will inspire me to just pick myself up and force myself to go through the motions and help break my non-riding slump. I miss being in the saddle, I hate feeling like Bella’s going to be out of shape soon (I’ve always heard it takes 30 days to start losing conditioning guys, in theory by the time I start riding she’ll have just started losing her conditioning and I can prevent a major backslide).