Finding zen on ice

So, just to follow-up on my last post, I’m ok.

The symptoms I described to my Dr. are pretty classic stress and anxiety, so we’re going with that. We’re still awaiting a final diagnosis on my Dad’s dementia, but once we have that then my Dr. and I will get together and come up with a game plan in case there are preventative measures I can take now that could help mitigate me developing whatever it is he has in the future.

This is not my first dance with anxiety to the point where it negatively impacts my life. I had a wake up call about 5 years ago when I mistook a panic attack for a heart attack and ended up in the Emergency department. Thinking it’s a heart attack didn’t help. Still, I now know what a panic attack feels like and, because of that, I can recognize when it starts and often breath and talk myself through the episode.

Anyway, after that incident, I made some changes. Regular exercise, better diet. Mindfulness. I’m adding a new one this time around. Curling.

It has been a long time since I curled. 1984 to be exact when I curled in a high school bonspiel. Yeah, I grew up in a part of the world where the social highlight of the high school year was a 48 hour all-weekend curling bonspiel. Of course, for a rowdy bunch of 17 year olds in Northern Alberta, the curling took a backseat to the underage binge-drinking at 2am Saturday.

All in all, it’s been great fun. The other guys I am curling with have either never played, or, like me, haven’t curled in years. So we are all playing and learning together. And the opposing teams we have played have been great giving us advice and helping us learn the finer points of the game.

Yeah, there are other things I am doing to get back on track. I’m saying no to a lot of stuff right now, as those of you who subscribed to my recently launched newsletter have likely discovered. And I am trying hard to get back into a normal routine, including back on my bike(s) which have been gathering dust in the garage since I rode the Tour de Victoria in August. And yeah that newsletter thing. But right now the thing that has been most effective in snapping me out of my anxiety induced funk is curling.

Ok, Ok. The post-game beer helps, too.