White Noise

Some of my current issues with anxiety are due to an irrational fear of death and dying. It’s not irrational in the sense that I have experienced a lot of loss.  Over the last five years or so logic has flown out the window and I can often be found lying awake at night either watching my wife’s chest rise and fall or seriously spinning out of control thinking that I will not wake in the morning.  I can go for periods of time without the suffocating fear and most recently, I realized that news of death, generally of someone I have known is the trigger for up to a week or more of sleepless nights… for me and my wife!  So what does this have to do with today’s prompt Sound? Everything!

We sleep with a box fan at night, not for comfort but for the “noise.”  In the middle of a panic or anxiety attack I have a really hard time being present, so I have picked up a few tools to bring me back into the moment, most recently I found that when I force myself to concentrate on the whirring of the fan, I can drown out the incessant, untruths that are creating stories in my head.  On Monday afternoon I learned that an acquaintance had passed away in his sleep; he was young, my wife’s age and there was not a cause of death listed.  That evening I slept fine and Tuesday, Valentine’s day was actually amazing… but something happened between a great evening and getting ready for bed that started the cycle.  I know the fan helps me to self-soothe but sometimes it’s hard to get to that point because the thoughts in my head are that much louder.  So I turned the fan up and  tried my breathing techniques and focused only on the sound.  It must have helped because I don’t remember when I finally fell asleep and look: here I am this morning tired but alive.

I don’t know how to escape the fear but I am grateful to sound for being a self soothing tool that I can utilize until I can conquer it.

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2 thoughts on “White Noise

  1. Lisa and Sonia says:

    Hi Amanda. Thank you for sharing your inner world. It is quite like ours. We sleep with a box fan. We have those sleepless nights. We lie awake and wait for that unnamed monster to arrive. Even though I am next to the person who loves me more than anyone ever has, I am still alone with my demons. But they pass. I find sleep and the sun comes up again. Sonia and I both count our nights of uninterrupted sleep. We talk about triggers and share our fears. We make a safe space for each other to be vulnerable and afraid of whatever it is that keeps us up at night. We are writing to let you know that we support you in your path of healing. Next time you can’t find sleep, remember that our box fan is on too! One of our favorite poems is “The Peace of Wild Things” by Wendell Berry. http://billmoyers.com/story/peace-wild-things/ Wishing you peace, Lisa and Sonia

    • Amanda Mandigo says:

      Hello friends ❤ I'm feeling awfully tender for you two right now and am so grateful for the time you took to read and respond. Anxiety makes it really easy to feel all alone… and though I dislike that anyone has to deal with it; it is very comforting to hear stories from others who understand, who get it. I barely made it through your comment without crying, you two are so lovely and I really appreciate you reaching out and sharing with me. Thank you for the poem, I haven't read it in quite some time and I really enjoyed listening to him narrate. Thank you so much for being you and being in my life~

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