Am I developing anxiety, what should I do?


I am my mom's only child. My mom has cancer, (untreated) & cannot walk on her own.
She is in rehab nursing facility for now.
I have no relatives left after my mom passes.
I live alone w/my pets.
I'm 54 w/hypertension but take meds to control it.
I have to work to support myself (I rent an apt).
Last night was bad, I came home after spending the evening w/mom @ NH.
I am not sleeping well, I have a very nervous stomach, no appetite, I am starting to tremble & am occasionally dropping things.
I had stated to sweat, feel nauseous & had diarrhea.
This lasted about 2-3 hours until I tried to fall asleep.
I keep thinking how my mom is crying & suffering being away from her home.
She tells me everything I go to see her that she wants to go home to her own house & have nurses come there to care for her.
She & I cannot afford to pay for any care out of pocket because mom has Medicare/Medicaid and Medicaid won't pay for nursing care in your home.
Every time I talk to mama on the phone, she talks for a few minutes, then as we as saying goodbye she starts crying & I can't stand to hear her in so much pain but I can't do anything to change it & it's making me feel like I'm having a panic attack.
I've usually dealt w/loss & death OK (not as well as some, but I pray a lot & try to talk it out w/friends & that has helped me in the past but this is really taking a toll on me & the more I feel like this, the more I worry that I WILL die before my mom & she will be left all alone.
I'm also panicked because if my mom should pass before me, then I am all alone & it frightens me terribly.
I am seeing my GP Doctor on Mon after I called & spoke to the nurse & told her my symptoms.
I'm hoping she can give me something to help calm me when I get anxiety or advise on some alternative treatment while I'm dealing w/all this.
I never knew what it felt like when I hear that others had "anxiety" or panic attacks but I think I know now how it feels & it's very, very frightening.
Please can anyone help me w/their knowledge of what I can do to at least get thru this weekend??

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Hangingon, IMO effexor can be an unpleasant drug -- several ppl, including me, have had bad experiences with it, and some doctors won't prescribe it. Try one of the others, like celexa (mine), zoloft, lexapro, prozac -- they have far fewer side effects, and if you need an antidepressant, you *really* need it.
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I don't have any panic or anxiety other then what is going on w/my mom..
It only happens when I hear she's not doing well or if she should pass away.
I really don't worry about much of anything else, I guess in fortunate in that way, but losing my mom & seeing her so helpless & suffering is something that causes me to worry, excessively because I love her & how much she means to me.
I am not taking the Effexor my doctor has prescribed because I am afraid of side effects (nausea, insomnia, loss of apetite) pretty much all the symptoms I do get when I felt the anxiety attack..
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With panic/anxiety, understanding that something can trigger that in you will be helpful. For example, if your feelings get hurt, instead of heading quickly on a downward spiral in your mind, call someone immediately and just explain what happened ( pre-arranged understanding person). If the panic is still coming on, the person on the phone can wait until you take your medicine. Doesn't take long, allows you to learn to deal with acute anxiety and not feel alone. No therapist required. You can get through this. The panic goes away as you get older.
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Thank you all so much for your wisdom & advice.
I'm sorry I don't recall who in here but they mentioned maybe I can sell or rent moms home & use the $ to help pay for her nursing care so she can move back home but I can't sell her house because she has a reverse mortgage on it.
Her house can only be sold if she moves or dies.
Then the money gained from the sale goes to pay off whatever the amount was that mom has used up till then.
Also, I could bring her to live me because I live in a small, 1 bed apartment & have many fur babies.
Mom has asthma & can't be around the animals, not to mention so place for the nurse or caretaker to sleep at my place.
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Hangingon61......I have said this many times before on this site....NO ONE wants to be in a nursing home but they are the ones trained to take care of someone not us. All we can do is go, visit, and make sure they are being taken care of the best possible way (maybe not how we would do it but I had to give that up and over to God). Forgive me for offending anyone that is doing this at home. No intention at all and I bow down to you. Go at different times so they don't know when you are coming to check up on different aides/attendants. IF your mom does have cancer and is taking different meds or radiation, chemo, etc. then she might have a little chemo brain (dementia) and as someone mentioned above, she will never undrstand completely and it's futile to try to explain each and every time that she can't come home. I know it's hard, trust me. My mom was always saying well let's go when I would visit and I would have to make something up for her sanity and mine. That might be what you have to do with your mom for her sanity and YOUR's. Please don't think I'm being flip here. I'm not. I was told very early on (6 yrs ago) that you have to join them in their journey and not to try to reason or change their minds. It has served me well. Hard lesson at first at first but I became a master at it. Now it doesn't matter since she is in the late stages of her disease. When you visit or talk on the phone (which I'm not sure if that's a good idea to talk to her after you leave the facility) when she starts in on going home or you living with her, try to redirect her and start talking about weather, drs. appts, your job, church, etc. What did she love to do before all this? Try to get aides involved in that. Bring it to the nH and let her look at it. Tell her you will be back in a little bit that you have an appt. ANYTHING but just DON'T feel guilty! Guilt means that you have done something wrong to hurt someone or something on PURPOSE and you haven't. My sister died unexpectedly 3 years ago so I am the only child taking care of my dad (93) and mom, 2 grand kids. You are doing the best you can and that's all you can do. We all have your back here on this site. Good for you that you pray and have support from friends. Find a support group for really will help plus you will find friends in your area going through the same thing. Go have some fun. It's hard but once you try it you will get used to it and it will become easier on you to visit your mom. Good Luck and God Bless.
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You don't mention yr mom suffering dementia. So, I can understand that she is not happy with the present situation, but when nothing is wrong with her memory, normal thinking etc. you can only repeat and repeat that financially IT IS IMPOSSIBLE to have enough support in her own house. Nurses, family assistance etc.. cost quite some money. So you should stand firm with her. And when she refuses to accept, better you have someone of the rehab facility to talk with her, or ask them to arrange the intervention of a psych. assistant to have some talks with her so that she finally can accept her situation.
As far as your condition is concerned : feel so sorry that you do all you can to support your mom, and getting sick yourself. To be honest, I sincerely think that the problems with your mom are the main cause of yr health issues. First have a good talk with your doctor. Of course he will order exams to see that you do not suffer anything physically. And when, your troubles are purely resulting from the situation you are in, there are some things you can do on your own :
- look up on yr p.c. some breathing methods, which will diminish your panic attacks. Deeply breathing in & out, holding your hands on your belly so that you can feel your breathing is a very good thing to do. Even only 5 or 10 minutes will make a serious difference.
- Take at least 30 mins. each day for yourself. Or you take a good relaxing bath, or you make an easy walk, go from time to time out to just get a drink for yourself, in order words : be a bit egoistic and care for yourself.
- Some supplements or vitamines can also help - even temporary - as you don't eat enough. If you have no appetite : try to buy some foods with a strong flavor. It is easier to eat something sour or sweet or with herbs, etc.. than just some bread with ordinary cheese.
- Try to find in your neighborhood if there are no groups of people, who regularly meet and encounter the same problems as you have. Talking, talking, talking is the best solution. As you have no brothers or sisters to share with, you will have to look elsewhere to have a good talk.
- Where I live, there are centers with psychologists, where you pay, according to your income. This is a lot cheaper than going to a psychologist who is working alone, or in a practice, without any financial support from the government / state. May be the rehab facility of your mom know some addresses where you can find suitable help
- A good thing to do as well : write down your sorrow and misery. Of course this does not alter the situation, but it is a form of relief.
- If you are not the writing type, get some colour pencils or cheap paint, and a package of white paper and express your feelings. Only stripes / forms / circles etc.. may have a certain relief effect of you. This is done on regular basis in psychological facilities and is very helpful for some people.
- I can understand that you can not keep a dog, as you go working, but the presence of a cat, or even a small bird can give you a lot of pleasure and love. You need each pinch of love and tenderness you can imagine. So, I recommend you to go to a shelter and get yourself a cat or a small rabbit, or whatever small animal that can stay alone during the day.

I have not had an easy live (bad childhood) divorce, 2nd husband with Alzheimer when he was just 50 and died 13 years later.... So I know something about how you can feel when life is not so easy and happy.. and therefore I have tried out lots of the recommendations I gave you.
I sincerely hope that this answer will be a little helpful to you and hope that your situation may turn for the best soonest possible. A big hug from Belgium / Europe and best wishes for 2016.
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Hangingon, sounds like you need to get your Mom home. My Mom did the same thing, it ripped out my heart and I brought her to my house. She couldnt thank me enough and is as happy as can be. You could sell or rent her house and used that money along with her ss and maybe A&A VA to hire a caregiver fulltime when you work. She, and you will be so relieved. There is nothing like tucking your Mom into bed at night knowing she is happy and safe.You can also use daycare, its cheaper, some even come pick them up. I hired a caregiver to get mom up and to daycare and picked her up after work. Go with your gut, there is always singular to live at home with pets. I think you will both feel better. Medicaid does have at home programs, but if your mom has a house, she wouldnt qualify. Not sure where you live but medicaid puts a lein on any assetts or house that your mom owns and she will lose it regardless. Think about it . I have anxiety also, have had it off and on for years. I have been on and off zoloft , now I take a 1/2 klonopin if I need to drive long distances, as thats the only place I have anxiety is driving. Always start the pills at home because you could fall asleep and you need to adjust to the dosage. Follow your heart, you will be okay. One thing that really helps, sing! XO
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JessieBelle, I misunderstood who was being given the psychotropics.
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The quality of medical care in skilled nursing facilities varies. Any kind of specialist is usually going to require you to push and advocate for it. For my Mom, we usually had to arrange the transportation too. But it was worth it. The primary care docs were not giving her ideal diabetes management, the nurses including the APN misinterpreted retropulsion as resistance and/or could not pick up on her parkinsonism; I took her to a geriatrician and a geriatric neurologist at the Benedum center in Pgh and they got her on meds that actually helped a great deal. The differential diagnosis of dizziness is broad, and if it is not cardiac in origin, you might want neuro or ENT for this. But as long as you have a healthcare POA, you really do have a right to talk to the doctor in charge - you usually go through the director of nursing to make sure the concern is addressed promptly, because routine care might entail a physician review once a month or less.
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PCVS, the benzodiazepines and antidepressants were being recommended for the panic attacks the caregiver is having. When used therapeutically under the guidance of a good doctor, they can prevent complications of panic, such as agoraphobia. I should add that they should not be used long term, just long enough to allow the person to get through bad stretches and regain their confidence. Long-term use of benzos can be a problem, of course.
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