“I Won’t Be Shaken”

I must admit that Mondays cause me the most anxiety of any other day of the week. I wake up anxious about the week ahead and the challenges that may arise, thus becoming extremely grumpy and stressed.   Monday is usually the day that I force myself to take off from running to give my body a rest; however, I am beginning to think that I may need to rethink that. So today, I did not take off and instead as I ran, I reflected about how I could wake up feeling so overwhelmed already.

Since I am blessed to be able to have off for the summer to spend with my son, it is not that I am super stressed about the upcoming week work and how “life” will fit in.   Instead,  I get overwhelmed at times that the handling of my son’s food allergies and eczema will all be entrusted in my two hands all week long.   With that being said, I must admit that aside from just loving weekends, they are the time that I can breath deeper and find extra comfort knowing that my husband will be around too.   While it may be contradictory to my writing about it all, the reality is that I do have moments, or days where I allow my anxiety in a little too much.   For some reason, this morning I was extra determined to not allow Monday to shake me.

My current level of anxiety is mostly to do with the following two things:

  1. The school year/daycare starting; trusting others to watch my son all day long when sometimes it is difficult to fully trust myself
  2. The eczema flare-up TJ has been having for the past week. This happened a day or two after he had a routine vaccination at his 15 month checkup.

Last Monday, TJ had a vaccination.   At his appointment, he was suppose to have two shots. However, because of his allergies, they offered us the option of having the MMR shot done with his allergist instead.   In addition to this shot, he will need to receive the flu shot with his allergist too.   (That is the shot I am extra terrified of.) While I do understand the importance of vaccinations, I must also state that I do empathize with those who worry about the side effects. Heck, I worry about them.  Since about 5 months of age, TJ has experienced an eczema flare-up a day or two after receiving most immunizations. This shot was no different. (I must add that in addition to the vaccination, TJ had a nail infection and is, as always, cutting more teeth. Both of these could have also added to the problems with his eczema recently.)

During the past week, TJ’s skin has been the worst it has been for awhile.  After his naps last week, he would wake up with red swollen bags under his eyes and eczema would start to flare up on his cheeks.   It would continue to get worse until right around dinner time.   If that wasn’t enough for the poor guy, he has been getting red marks around his lips and mouth when he eats.   In addition, while eating his safe foods that he loves like raspberries and carrots, his lips have been getting irritated, thus making him scratch at them.   I emailed both his allergist and pediatrician about it all and they do not believe it is more food allergies developing, which is what I most feared.   However, I am keeping an extra close eye on it.

Last night when this happened after he ate about ten raspberries, I panicked, making my husband stand nearby.   I panic because food allergies are so tricky and I know that his immune system has been working extra hard lately due to getting the HIB shot.  I worry because I have read and spoken to many people who state that food allergies can just develop out of nowhere.   I get upset because I know TJ loves raspberries and I don’t want to take away more foods from him, feeling like I am depriving him.  I know that it is for his safety but still it hurts.  Most of all, I feel terrified because I remember that December evening after TJ ate yogurt.   I remember that nightmare and don’t want that ever to happen again.   Therefore, even though it is only 5 pm on Sunday evening, I begin to dread Monday. Yes, it is a downward spiral.   However, isn’t that the way anxiety works, exponentially, attacking us when we are most vulnerable.

After “reflect running” as I will call it, I prayed for the strength to put my faith above all my fears. Right afterwards, the first song I heard was “I Won’t Be Shaken.” Strangely enough with my mindset switched back to cautiously optimistic, TJ’s skin has also started to improve today. With some of the lyrics that helped me enjoy this Monday with improving skin, we smile on…

“This mountain rises higher
This way seems so unclear
But I know that you go with me
I will trust in you

Whatever will come my way
Through fire or pouring rain
We won’t be shaken
No we won’t be shaken
Whatever tomorrow brings
Together we’ll rise and sing
That we won’t be shaken”

-Building 429

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