Join Danielle as she muses her recent GAD diagnosis and shares with us her self care find.
Where did all this come from? This is a question that has been puzzling me since I was first officially diagnosed with generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) back in July. Actually, it has been puzzling me a lot longer than that, almost all my life in fact.
As long as I can remember there has always been a vague feeling of unease in the back of my mind. On my best days it is a barely noticeable whisper; on my worst days it is an inescapable feeling of doom, when even the most mundane tasks provoke hours of crying and feelings of worthlessness.
But where did it start? Was it my parent's split? A house move? Changing school? A joint smoked as a teenager? An unkind word from another girl? A relationship breakdown? A couple of months' unemployment? An unwanted hereditary hand - me - down from my mother or grandmother? Where?
The truth is, of course, that it could have been any, all, or none of those reasons. Perhaps the best way forward for me is to accept that this is who I am now and learn to deal with it as best I can rather than to spend hours going back over situations in the past that might have put me in the position I'm in now. As my CBT practitioner said: If you came home and found your house was on fire, you wouldn't stand around wondering how it happened, you would get on with trying to put the fire out.
Putting the fire out, to me, currently means trying to take care of myself as much as I can. By trying to absorb myself in my favourite hobby-baking, making myself get up and dressed to walk my puppy on the beach or by exercising for the sheer enjoyment rather than because I feel that I should.
So far it seems to be going well. Some days are better than others of course, but I hope that in time I will be able to focus less on the past and more on making a happier future for myself.
So what about me, where do I come from? Cornwall! And what do we like to eat as a snack in Cornwall? A pasty of course! There is nothing quite like a good Cornish pasty and they are one of my favourite things to bake. There is something so gratifying to me about making a pasty, a food item so ingrained in our precious Cornish culture. In bygone days, they would be made at home by miner's wives and eaten by the husbands at crib time the next day, the crimped crust serving to protect the pasty from sooty hands.
The recipe I use for my pasties is the official recipe used by the Cornish Pasty Association (yes, really). It is absolute sacrilege to add peas, carrot, or gravy to a pasty. If you want to make a steak pie and add any of those ingredients, then be my guest - just don't put them in a pasty!
Danielle is an enthusiastic hobby baker and beginner blogger living with anxiety and depression in Cornwall. You can find more baking blogs from Danielle here