This post was originally published on November 14, 2014. Minor changes have been made.
It isn’t a common occurrence for me to wake up in the middle of the night experiencing an anxiety attack. Coming out of a dead sleep to feelings of tension, stress, and overwhelming concern is a reason to contemplate what’s really bothering you. Sometimes the lesson we think we are supposed to learn turns out to be completely different than we expected!
Last week I thought the lesson I needed to learn was commitment. Perhaps if I were more committed I could make this relationship work. Perhaps my hesitation for moving forward was simply fear of the future. Perhaps if I tried harder it would work out. Well, perhaps I was wrong.
It seems to me that paying attention to how we are feeling in any relationship is key. Do we feel inspired to be better? Do we feel excited to see the person frequently? Do we feel safe, protected, and loved for who we are? Do we feel we fall short? Do we feel judged? Do we feel important? Do we feel remembered? Do we think of them and their needs? Do we think of ways to help them and serve them? Do we feel like putting them first in our lives? How do we feel when we are together? How do we feel when we are apart? In short, do we feel happy?
It can be challenging at times to recognize what we are feeling and furthermore to express those feelings to another person. When you are in a relationship and suddenly begin to experience anxiety attacks, the other person should probably know about it. (Talk about being vulnerable!) Luckily for me, Mr. ACDC is a very kind and patient man.
My initial reaction was confusion. Why am I so upset? Yes, life is stressful, but not that bad. I determined for myself that it had something to do with the relationship. It was making me feel unsettled. I talked with Mr. ACDC and he listened and offered suggestions on what the causes might be. I tried to explain that I felt it was us. He wasn’t convinced, and ultimately committed me to pray about continuing the relationship. We agreed to take a break for a week and that I would come back with my final decision and conclusion.
During this week I have paid particular attention to how I am feeling. After having that conversation I haven’t had an anxiety attack one time. What has happened is that I have turned to the scriptures with more intent. I have prayed earnestly trying to understand what the Lord is trying to teach me. I am thankful for this random trial that has drawn my closer to God. I feel peace.
What I also feel is that there are moments in our lives when the Lord is trying to warn us or get our attention. He is trying to make us aware of how we feel. If we are too busy in our lives He may take drastic measures to get our attention. I still don’t know exactly why I felt such deep concern, but I do have faith that I as I act according to feelings of the spirit I will be directed and guided to gain that understanding.
My conclusion didn’t change. Unfortunately, I still felt that something was off with that relationship and so, while our mission was to keep a man, we are back to square one at finding one. I am still thankful for the experience and move forward with no regrets. There doesn’t have to be something wrong with a person for them to be the wrong person for you.
Ashley Dewey is extremely talented at being single. Hobbies include awkward conversations with members of the opposite sex, repelling third dates, talking to boys about their girl problems and to girls about their boy problems. In her spare time she also has a very fulfilling school life, work life, and social life. Besides being a professional single, Ashley is also a BYU graduate with a degree in linguistics (Aka word nerd). She enjoys studying other languages, particularly American Sign Language, and finds most all of them fascinating. She is currently pursuing a masters degree in Teaching English as a Second Language. Ashley works most of the time and has often been accused of being a workaholic. Currently she works full time as a merchandiser and supervisor in a retail store, and part time doing social media work. On her day off she works (really it doesn't feel like work) in the Provo LDS temple. The only kind of work she finds difficulty focusing on is house work. Her favorite activities in her free time are reading, writing, creating social experiments, and spending time with great friends and family. Specific activities with those family and friends include: going to concerts, plays, dance recitals, BYU basketball and football games, and watching sports on television.