Anxiety takes a break

A couple of years ago, I was prescribed hydroxyzine for eczema. In addition to relieving itching, it has a mild anti-anxiety effect and helps you fall asleep. So I took it at bedtime. The first morning after taking it, I was waiting for my morning bus well aware that I felt very different.

I was not worrying about anything. I was aware of the usual things I worry about; but I was not bothering to worry about them. And I thought, “Wow. This must be what it’s like to not have anxiety.”

At the follow-up appointment, I described this to my doctor — and this is when she raised the idea that I might benefit from taking anti-depressants. But I took this medication for almost a year — and the anti-anxiety effect quickly wore off. And I suspect the same thing would happen with anti-depressants. My anxiety is very insistent and seems to quickly override any medication that wants to drive it down.

Something odd has happened to me this week. I am feeling the way I did when I first started taking hydroxyzine. I know I have plenty going on in my life to cause anxiety. None of that has gone away and I am still aware of it all — but it is not making me anxious. This morning, I did not wake up wishing that I had not. And there is a comforting feeling of fullness in the crown of my head.

I do not know what is behind this — but I sure hope it lasts.

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