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  • Writer's pictureGhost Chicken

That One Time I had a Christmas Meltdown.

- by Bri Ghost Chicken - (Originally posted to Facebook on Dec. 23, 2021)

- I wanted to post this story here because it's a little glimpse of what happens when I have a "meltdown". Sometimes it's caused by messing up my medications, sometimes it happens when I'm in a bad flare or just had an anaphylaxis episode. During a "meltdown" I don't always recognize what's happening so it can feel very intense and upsetting. This was an episode that happened before Christmas. Also Mr. Ghost Chicken is my partner. -

- Original Post -

Sometimes when my meds get messed up I have spectacular meltdowns. I had one just a few hours ago. The present I ordered for Mr. Ghost Chicken for Christmas showed as being delivered last Friday but never actually arrived.

Cue the crying and ripping through packaging and cardboard in the living room trying to find the package that was never delivered because maybe it was and I missed it and if I don’t have his Christmas present (which was gonna be such a cool gift) the holiday will be ruined and suddenly I’m hyperventilating and about to pass out.

Meanwhile Mr. Ghost Chicken is on the couch torn between helping me and trying to get me to eat food and calm down. And for about 20 minutes it felt like this was the worst disaster in my life and I had failed everyone and I was helpless to fix it.

Then my meds kicked in and I ate some food and drank some water and sent some emails and found out they never sent the order to begin with.

Suddenly it was fine. I was super embarrassed. Me being able to have medication that (usually) works for me and helps me regulate my dysautonomia/sensory input issues sometimes feels like a privilege. But when I don’t have it, or it’s not working quite right, I realize how vital it is for my quality of life.

I apologized to Mr. Ghost Chicken profusely. And while I feel like a big boob, I realize that this was a significant part of my life I wanted to share.

What I've learned from my meltdowns: What my brain does is it gets VERY overwhelmed with data and sensory input so I hyper focus on one issue. Then I usually respond to the intense disregulation by crying and sometimes becoming non-verbal if it’s really bad. Usually the brain signals from the rest of my nervous system get all messed up in there too and I feel overwhelmed by all the messed up inputs. So hyper focusing is my attempt to force my brain to start regulating that shit again. Which it can’t do. Which is why I need the meds.

Also this is the kind of stress that can cause me to have a mast cell reaction - my systems are so frenzied that it triggered my damn immune response into overdrive. I now have a full-body rash and had mild anaphylaxis. Thank you, Benadryl!

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