Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday...

I started this blog one year ago. One whole year ago! I can’t believe it, it feels like it’s only been weeks. On the other hand, at times each post has felt like a week, but I digress.

And okay, for the record, it’s been one year and three days, but who’s counting, and either way, that’s not bad for a procrastinator of the worst kind. I started this blog on a Saturday morning one year ago in an attempt to relieve the intense pain and humiliation associated with my bouts of hypochondria. What began as a personal and private attempt to beat back insanity, has morphed into a community discussion, from which I’ve drawn great support and insight.

Just one year ago, as I sat at the computer with sweaty palms and a sense of impending doom, I could barely bring myself to admit that I needed help, even though I silently knew I was slowly losing my mind. And now, today, because of this blog, and the support I’ve received through it, I’m an unapologetic hypo, with one foot out the closet door.

This year has been more rewarding than I’d ever imagined it could. While the acknowledgment of my problem hasn’t made it magically disappear, the “fits” have significantly decreased. I’ve found colossal comfort in articulating my episodes and pulling the humor from otherwise humorless situations. Many times at the onset of an attack, I’ve gone back and reread old posts that, low-and-behold, describe the same symptoms and fears I was experiencing at the time. This little corner of the blogosphere has been a great refuge for me.

But, what’s amazed me the most has been the response from people who’ve stumbled across the site and felt compelled to share their stories via email and comments. I know it sounds cliché, but it really does help just to know there are others, many others, out there in that same scary place, with those same irrational thoughts, and those same irrational fears.

And even more surprising—being the sociophobe that I am—are the bonds I’ve formed with other bloggers, namely: Lacey, Barbora, Tournesol, Addie, Dave, SA Dave, Sean and Debaser. Not to mention the frequent commenters who have provided just as much support as those who maintain their own sites. And even the readers, who don’t say a word, but keep coming back, let me know I’m not alone.

So, with death by anesthesia only twelve days away, here’s hoping I make it through another year.

9 comments:

Ileana said...

Happy Anniversary to your blog!

I just recently came over and checked your blog and I love it. I love your wit and humor. I am so happy that blogging has helped you. It helped me too.

Keep doing what you're doing! At times I told myself that if I am at least half as fun as you are, there must be some hope for me, and definitely you.

Lacy H. said...

Oh Leila dear! You used the new "e"! I love you forever for that! hahah.

For the record...you are my cyber blogging sister-as incredibly gay as that sounds! What would I do without you? For those three seconds when I thought you won the lottery (gullible) I was DEVISTATED! *chuckles

I'm glad this blog has provided a place for you to process and record. It's such a healing tool, and just the act of talking about it, sharing, and building community is immensely helpful-as you said.

Paxil has really been my answer, and since I've been taking it faithfully, I haven't had a single bout of hypo-ness. But I promise you, the second I go off of it, it will be madness compared to the likes of King George.

Keep blogging. We all tune in!

Addie said...

Leila! Happy blog birthday and I'm sending a big hug your way. I've found your tremendous support and hilarious stories to be a Godsend. And you're not going to die under anesthesia. I promise. And I would know. <---yeah, I can't back that up...sorry. But you're seriously not.
Addie

Anonymous said...

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23407657-details/Girl+dies+of+brain+tumour+after+doctor+tells+her+'headaches+are+caused+by+stress'/article.do

ahhhhh! D:

Debaser said...

I think you're an awesome example of how creative activities (articulating, finding the humor) can help us with various anxiety disorders feel better. You're a terrific writer and still say you should write a book. I can see it right now on the NYT Bestseller List. You'd be doing interviews on NPR with Terri Gross and everything! DO IT.

Nikole said...

I agree with debaser - write the book! (you know, with all your free time)... Ha!
Congrats on 1 year & 3 days - I tell you - it sure has helped me know I am not alone!
I just was under anesthesia last week - still living, kicking, & breathing..
Cheers to making it a year!

And to person who posted the link above.. EVIL... Thank god it didn't work! :)

Heather said...

I'm really pleased to hear you're having less hypo fits. I also find Paxil works brilliantly (haven't been on it for ages though).
I really enjoy your honesty and humour.

AnxiousAnnie said...

Miss Leila...

happy anniversary and i am soooo feeling everything that you wrote here.. and i want to thank you for encouraging me to start my own blog... it really really does help. xoxoxoxox

SA D. said...

Hi Leila,

Happy belated aniversary!!! You're a wonderful and very witty writer and I've enjoyed your blog since the first time I came across it. Here's to another successful year blogging, unless you succumb to tonsillectomy complications. I'm hoping for the best for you. ;)

Anyway, you go girl!

Dave