My Mama and I

My Mama and I
Olivia Williams Anxiety

Hello! I'm a 22-year-old woman, fresh out of college and into the work world. But, I also suffer from anxiety, and have experienced both anxiety attacks and panic attacks. I've never done well with stress, and I'm learning how to handle it one step at a time, mainly through natural treatments and coping mechanisms to calm...

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Over the past few months, I have been taking care of my grandmother (mama) with my family because she had a stroke last September. The stroke changed everything about her. My grandmother is a strong woman, very strong, so right now, it's rough seeing her have to depend on us for pretty much everything. She's recovering slowly, but she's able to walk. It's just her left side that is weak and slow, and lately, my mom and I have noticed that she doesn't have the best memory. 

I told my mom to tell the neurologist about it, and they also found some activity in an area of her brain. But, just a little. I have to remind myself that I can't expect her to be herself the next day, but you can imagine just how hard that really is.

I take a lot of myself from her, especially since we have the same tendencies. I often say that I come from a family of worry warts, but I'm noticing lately that I can get really worried, really quickly. I'm also starting to realize how my grandmother being like this is affecting me. When I get even the slightest thought that she is having another stroke, or worse, I freak out on the inside. Like two weeks ago, right before I was going to work, she called me right before I left the house. And, right after she called me, she called my mom. 

My mind was going a hundred miles an hour. But, when I ran down there to see if she had fallen out of bed, or worse, she was laying down watching the news and just wanted to let me know that the roads are supposed to be icy--and that there was traffic, like there is any other day.

I just said yes, thank you, okay'd her until I walked out of the door. But, it's this nagging feeling that I have in my chest that something more wrong is going on. I don't know, could be just me. 

That feeling will probably stay with me even when the doctors find no abnormality in her brain. They usually do. But, then there's days like the other day where I really feel like she's getting better. My aunt, mama, and I sat at the kitchen table and peeled like 320 shrimp for Christmas Eve (yes, 320). Her fingers were working on both hands, and she didn't take any breaks or complained of any pain. It was just one of those moment where I felt like I have my grandmother back. She even tried to cut the clams out of the shells, but I eventually had to take over.

So, we'll see what happens with it. For now, I'll just continue to take care of her with my mom as best as I can, worry on the side where no one can see me, and take notes on how she's doing or if any thing's going on.