Yesterday I went to go renew my son’s health insurance. I could have mailed in the renewal form, but I needed to include a copy of his birth certificate and a copy of his social security card. I did not want to take any chances of either of these getting into the wrong hands, so I went to their office.
As soon as I walked in, I regretted my decision of going. The office was packed; almost every seat had a body, and there were screaming children every where. We took a number and then a seat and we waited. Tristan was very well behaved, playing with me and watching the other people, and for that, I was appreciative.
However; the longer I sat, the more anxious I became. I was unable to get a corner seat, where I could safely have my back against the wall and have a view of the entire room. My seat was situated in the very center of the room, in the middle of everyone. I felt so exposed; I had people constantly walking around me, bumping my stroller, or being overly figity near me.
I was so vulnerable. At one point, I thought a little boy was going to climb into my lap, and it even seemed like he was plotting on stealing my wallet from my diaper bag. He looked to be around the age of 9 or so, and kept getting closer to me and he was not hiding the fact that he was openly looking into my bag, at all. As soon as I zipped my bag closed, he moved away.
Finally ! They called my number, “63”, and I jumped out of my chair. I had to finish filling out a form while at the counter, and I barely managed to do so, I was shaking so badly. The woman must have thought I was ignorant because she would tell me what to fill out and I would do it incorrectly. She spoke to me as if I were garbage, then I said, “I do not know how you ladies do this every day, I have PTSD, and my nerves are so shot I could vomit.” At that point she became friendly. I rushed to finish everything so I could leave and get back to my comfort zone.
I was nearly ran off the road on the way home, which did not help my anxiety, and by the time I arrived home I was exhausted. I had a headache hit me, which quickly turned to a migraine, I could barely function. I laid down for a nap, at the direction of my husband, around 8:30. I woke up around 12:30 and was having a panic attack and then had trouble falling asleep. Once I fell back to sleep, I struggled to stay calm and found myself constantly waking in a state of panic. The smallest occurrences can set off my panic, it is like a ticking bomb. I kept waking, feeling like my chest was caving in, unable to catch my breath.
I suffer every day. I wish I could say this happens once in a while, but I am not that lucky. I go through this many times a week. I cannot control it, it controls me. My disease tells me what to do and how to live. Something that could be such a small trip to one person is like building up and accomplishing a marathon for me, and it is draining.
It took nearly a month for me to build the courage to go to that office and turn in the information for my son to keep his insurance. Then, it cost me the rest of the day and night to recover from the trip. At least my husband knows how hard it is for me and helps me when I need him.
It was brutal. Maybe, one day, I will find a trip away from home to be easy. Maybe.