I Think It Only Matters If We Think It Does

I can TOTALLY relate to you!! I've ALWAYS been an extremely extroverted, outgoing person. From my mother (with her alcoholic self) I inherited many great qualities...one of them is having a whole bunch of charisma. It is in my nature to find ultimate fulfillment interacting with people on many levels and in many different social and professional settings. But, ever since I overdosed (basically), I've taken to staying home as much as possible. It's been a few years and has been quite an adjustment I've had to make. I am a girl who wouldn't HESTITATE to jump on the highway and drive for 40 mintues to the opposite SIDE of the big city I live near to take Salsa dance lessons by myself! I just LOVE being adventurous and used to never let anything stop me from getting out there and soaking up as much of life as possible. But, I've gotten SO much fulfillment from being at home for the passed 3 years!! I HATE to leave the house, most of the time, now and, that's been really weird for me. Even though I still manage to accomplish many great and productive things, most of my time is actually spent idle....just happy to have and be in my own home. Someitmes, I get really stressed out....I have God-awful panic attacks, for apparently no reason...where I sometimes actually believe I'm having a heart attack and am about to die. When I have to leave the house, I don't usually have attacks but, I just LOATHE it! I just feel so much better when I'm in my own space, doing my own thing, without anyone else to worry about catering to...without having to worry about burdeing anyone with my depth and depression. Like you, I don't "plan" on staying this way for the rest of my life. I have a LOT of dreams that I'm (always) actively pursuing, even if "actively pursuing" means I can only devote five minutes a day to the nurturing of my dreams....... Even though I can't imagine being this way forever (I sometimes feel SO dysfunctional, like I'm not participating in life because I never want to leave the house), I know there's a good chance I may very well STAY "this way." The key for me is in knowing that, even if I DO wind up spending the majority of the rest of my living days on this Earth IDLE, so!!!!!!! Just because I spend the MAJORITY of my time alone, at home, where I am most comfortable, it does NOT mean that I can't still lead a productive, meaningful life! This also applies to you!! It's all about, #1: accepting that we actually DO have some "limitations," and #2: using our HEADS to figure out how to work with our limitations. It's like an amputee track star......say an Olympic-bound runner has an accident and has to have a leg amputated. Does she have to quit running? HELL no!! All she has to do is hustle up the money to get a good prostesis that fits and works then get-ta'-trainin'! That's IT!!

What we ALL need to realize is that whoever we are, however we are, at any given moment.....well, that's just beautiful!!
MysticWriter MysticWriter
36-40, F
2 Responses Dec 11, 2006

I'm agoraphobic too. I'm just now getting to the point where I can say that without getting defensive. My "symptoms" are very much like the words Mystic posted -- I could say much the same thing. Maybe it's because we're both born in December, maybe it's because of alot of things, but it is. I didn't think I was agoraphobic before because my character is to be outgoing. But time and experience has taken it's toll on my patience and I've simply begun to "prefer to stay at home". This type of Polyanna view of life where, "I live it because I like it", IS agoraphobia -- my world of my own making is far better, far safer, much happier than life out there could ever be for me, ect. We find ways to justify staying at home for whatever reasons. Our outgoing natures may have even developed as a way to compensate for agoraphobic feelings in early stages. I justify my preference for being at home by being "productive". It's still an unhealthy way to relate. Being an artist, I work at home. Whenever there's a social obligation I'd like to leave early or avoid altogether I can simply proclaim that I have to get some work done. I've found that taking small projects with me, even if I don't work on them, helps me feel better about going to family events and such. Many people would never suspect I'm agoraphobic and would probably argue that I'm the most extroverted person they've met. But I'm really not like that anymore.<br />
So, these are the first words I've shared outside of my head and the doctors office about the subject. I joined here really just to get the chance to talk about it so I'm likely to be long winded. My point here is that it shows itself in many forms, but even outgoing, adventure loving people can be or become agoraphobic.

I LOVE your plan-of-action on accepting limitations!! No defeatist attitude there!! And, I'm not sure you're really agoraphobic, Mystic. You don't appear PARANOID of the " outter world ", you just seem more comfy in your home invironment.(even in idleness, as you say). I think it's sad that too many people are NOT satisfied w/ their own home, families, or own company... that they must seek adventure elsewhere for pleasure or entertainment. I think it's cool that you can find pleasure in both your home AND your own company!! In my opinion( which may not account for much, but that's never stopped me from telling it!!) if we can't stand our own company, how can we expect anyone else to stand ours??!! :]