Friday, November 12, 2010

Panic Attack....What I'm Not Stressed!

As some of you know I started having panic attacks a little over a year and a half ago. For about 9 months we had no idea what was wrong with me and of course my imagination took off with that! We thought I was pregnant, had salmonella, was hypoglycemic, having heart name it! Of course this didn't help with the panic attacks. Finally after the Dr ruling out most of my "self diagnosis" and Frank urging me I finally saw a therapist. This was not completely out of the blue, I have also been diagnosed with anxiety (whole other post!) and we thought maybe a recent switch in medication was the cause.

So I go to this therapist, and she thinks I am having panic attacks. The first thing out of my mouth was I am not stressed and whatever is happening is real not in my head! Then we start discussing my eating habits...what does this have to do with anything? So I tell her I drink 3-4 diet cokes a day, have a very big sweet tooth and usually skip breakfast I know not the best diet in the world and apparently the worst diet for someone that is predisposed to panic attacks! SO she tells me cut out ALL caffeine, any of you who know me probably don't want anything to do with me pre-diet coke in the morning! Also eliminate most sugar, WHAT now I am feeling stressed! And make sure you have breakfast with a protein and carb in it...I have never eaten breakfast. At first I am thinking, I know more than her, this is ridiculous, I am not going to stop eating sugar and drinking diet cokes! It only took one more attack for me to change my tune. It took me a little over a week to completely give up caffeinated diet coke, I would like to thanks Frank for not leaving me during this time! The sugar part was hard and I still eat a little just not a bunch at once. Started eating breakfast, usually peanut butter on a graham cracker. And miraculously I went from having attacks 2-3 times a week to having one every 3 or so months! Maybe the Dr did know what she was talking about!

So for a little info on panic attacks and what they really are. They are an unprovoked release of adrenaline and other hormones due to your fight or flight instinct. Only problem is when you are not in danger and this happens you feel VERY sick. Some people think they are having a heart attack, I never personally felt any heart palpitations. Others feel lightheaded and nauseous, this was me. So a lot of people who suffer from panic attacks also develop a fear of public places. They are afraid that they will have an attack in public and everyone will know their little secret, so they don't go anywhere. Can you imagine how debilitating that would be.

I was fortunate enough to be able to quickly identify my target, large crowds. SO the combination of the foods I was eating and the places I was going or planning to go would put me into a panic attack. I am very fortunate to say I was able to get a handle on my problem as soon as we identified the trigger. I now don't fear going out to eat, family gatherings or stores. It is still amazing to me how a release of a hormone at the wrong time can make you so sick!

If anyone is interested I have a good resource on panic attacks.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Meal Exchange

Freezer cooking never worked for me. I could never carve out a day to only cook, plus the thought of all those dishes just did not appeal to me! About 2 weeks ago one of my friends suggested we do a meal exchange. Everyone cooks 3 of the same meal and we all exchange so we end up with 3 different meals. This has been great, that means 3 nights a week dinner is already half way done! Now if you are anything like me I severly dislike reheated meals, so these meals are not cooked, they just have to be put in the oven and some have to be put together. Below are the meals we have made the last 2 weeks, it has really been a great time saver for me.

Chicken Vermacelli

This is what is included in the bag
1 box of thin spegatti broken into smaller pieces
2 large chicken breast seasoned, cooked and diced
3-4 cups of shreaded cheddar

What the cook has to do:
boil the noodles
layer the ingredients
pour 1 cup of milk over
cook at 400 for about 30 minutes

YUMMO! and it takes alot less time because the chicken is ready for you!

Layered Beef Enchiladas

This is what is included in the bag
1lb of cooked seasoned ground beef
1- 19oz can of enchilada sauce
1 small can of chili (no bean)
2 cups of cheese

What the cook has to do
combine chili and enchilada sauce
layer all ingredients
cook at 400 until bubbly

Another easy dinner. Confession: since I got married I have not rolled enchiladas, I always layer them! My MIL said that is how she always cook them so that makes it ok in my book! :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

End of Year Resolution

Truth be told I hate New Year's Resolutions. You might as well take the thing you are lease likely to do because NO ONE follows through with these! But for lack of a better phrase here are my goals (End of Year Resolutions) for this year.
1. Make homemade biscuits. I have wanted to do this for a while, but I am very intimidated by this. With that said I was also very intimidated by sewing, making bread, canning and making this to we will try.
2. Finish 5 blankets for Project Linus. I have 2 done and I just started the first week on November. Project Linus is a non profit that gives handmade blankets to children in the hospital. These kids are going through the unimaginable and I hope that a small gesture from a stranger will brighten their day.
3. Finish Christmas shopping by December 17th. So the deadline for this is a little before the end of the year, but I want to enjoy Christmas and my birthday so this WILL get done.
4. Find ways to let Lily my artist express herself. She has become quite the artist and I would like to find a way for her to be able to show this to others. Maybe I just think she is great because I am her mother, but she is a better artist than me (not that is saying alot!)
5. Take the kiddos to see ICE at the Gaylord. I have wanted to go for the last 3 years, but due to price, location and the crazy holidays it has not happened. This year is Charlie Brown and they have an ice slide that Thomas will thing is soooo coole. So this year we will go!!!
Guys hold me to this, I have to make these public so I will do them..Hopefully an update after the first of the year!