2.28.2014

Breathe. Breathe again. And again.

I'm gonna be raw and open for a bit. It will take a great deal of strength to write this because these words will be painful. But I'm well on my way as far as accepting myself and sashaying on with my life. I am up there as far as one of the strongest people I've known. No one will ever understand the absolute hell cage anxiety disorders pin you down in. Unless you've been surrendered. 

Anxiety takes your face between it's hands and stares you down, locking your head in place, keeping you from moving.  Keeping you from living. Really living. It's sudden and abrasive, loud, unforgiving, annoying and just awfully cruel. Every single emotion is replaced by dread, by tons of questions, and for me there was a time I couldn't even recognize what I felt because all it was all panic. Worry was home for me, and much as I wanted out, it had a goddamn welcome mat. 

These words are strange to me though. Back there, everything's foggy and out of place in an weird time/space continuum. Like a messed up frame in a negative sequence that you don't even remember taking, but it's there. And you're here. And you can't help but try and make sense of how you got here. It's terrifying to even look back at certain days because it's as though a giant chunk in the calendar of your life has been beaten and burned. Everything's suffocating and you're just scared someone is going to ask you what you're doing because your response will be like "Well I'm living, am I doing it right? What's wrong? Why did you ask me that? What the hell is wrong?" Nothing's wrong. It's the black and white thinking pattern many people with anxiety struggle with. So, everything is wrong if it isn't 100% right. 

And then you get to where you can't remember at all. I'm at that point right now and that's huge. The trick is to not let it become you no matter how much it tries because it's a shitty home, it's not safety, and it's not living. Anxiety is not me, but only a part of me I can manage now and I'm really proud of that. It will always be my absolute biggest accomplishment in my life. A lot of amazing things are going to happen soon and that's one of the reasons I created this blog. To be able to fully experience life over and over again. I deserve more than my mind only allows me to feel and the best time to feel better and to just be okay is always. Never forget that. 

I’m at a point where I’m trying not to say I’ve eradicated anxiety from my life forever because that’s not realistic. I’ve made the mistake in the past where I thought it was just gone and would never return. Guess what? It came back and punched me in the chest even harder. If anything, I have overcome my perception of anxiety. I can deal with it if it's here, when it comes because it always will, and if it’s not around, that’s great too.

5 comments:

  1. Beautifully written and wonderfully articulated. Your authenticity and language are amazing. It's really big to come to the realization and acceptance that anxiety does not make you "weaker;" but in fact, a strong person for endeavoring what you have. It's also a HUGE milestone to come to the understanding that yes, anxiety may/will strike again but you can handle and manage it better than ever before. And when it isn't present it's not something you need to ignore or be fearful of. Thank you for sharing your life and your experiences with us, in addition to being a real source we can relate to or gain awareness from. Congratulations on the accomplishments you've made on this journey. Can't wait to read more :)

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    1. Olivia you are such a beautiful ray of sunshine. Thank you thank you for your thoughtful, deep, and kind response. I'm so glad I have you in my life!!!

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  2. This post is just wonderful and so strong of you to write out about something so personal. I've suffered panic disorder for many years and like you have accepted that its not something that you can completely eradicate, but you can live life without being held hostage by it entirely.

    It takes great strength, courage and determination to face this destructive, irrational and negative emotion, which shows me me what will to live life to its fullest you must have. Relapses happen on occasion but you will always remember the terror as if its a fresh.

    In you I can relate, and I thank you for this post for expressing a sensitive issue many people are ashamed of speaking about in fear of being judged.

    All the best,

    Hattie @intheuptown x

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    1. Hattie,

      Most importantly, thank you. For if it wasn't for your sweet comment, I would have forgotten about this post entirely. Reading it through again was almost like a pep talk. A reminder of what I've been through and where I am now.

      I am so sorry you've suffered, but I can feel your strength in your words. Anxiety is never black and white in a sense where it can be diagnosed, and then cured completely, gone, vanished. But how so ironic is it that it's just the type of thinking it conjures -- black and white, everything is terrible if everything isn't 100% good? What a nasty prank if you ask me.

      Thank you, again, for your words. It always comforts me to know I'm not alone. We're strong, resilient women!

      xo!

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  3. Strong, resilient women - I like that. It is in my mind, just something that does make us stronger and wiser to what life is and its importance.

    You can let it defeat you or you can use it to grow from. I have a successful career as a result because it only made me more determined to be the best version of myself.

    I hope you're having a wonderful summer!

    Hattie x

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