I just want to shut if off. Make the constant, nonstop thoughts just pause for one minute. My brain never slows down. Jumping from one thing to another. It is exhausting. Please just stop. Please. I want to have a moment when I am not over analyzing, over thinking, over feeling every damn thing in my life. I want to be able to play with my kids without worrying. I want to watch a favorite TV show without replaying a conversation over and over again. I want to pray and talk to God without getting distracted. I want to fall asleep without waking up exhausted because my brain didn’t stop once while I slept.
This is anxiety.
My anxiety isn’t as severe as my depression. I have talked very honestly about the deep dark pit of depression and how the hopelessness chokes me. But this disease is complex and hard to understand. For one minute, I can’t breath due to the darkness, the next minute, my heart races and my mind accelerates into overdrive. It is a sick cycle. One that brings me to my knees and makes me believe I will never overcome.
I can’t make a decision. I go back and forth weighing the pros and cons. In the morning, I am set on my choice. A few hours later, I have concluded the complete opposite. Back and forth. Over and over. Again and again. For days. For weeks. Sometimes even for months. If there is a deadline, I feel frantic about what to do. After, I wonder if what I have chosen was the right one. It doesn’t ever end. It becomes bigger and bigger than it really is. Reality is simple. Anxiety makes it complex. For somethings in my life, this is my reality. It is not always this way for me. My mind does live at peace. But right now, triggers of the past and the upcoming holidays are pulling out all the worst this disease has.
Anticipation makes it worse. It gives me more time to analyze. Find fault. Create conclusions. Believe things that haven’t even happened. Or may not even occur. Time generates false truths. What does that mean? It means in my head, I have decided how it will all conclude. It means in my head, I have already decided what someone else is thinking or feeling. Because in my head, the disease turns it around so I am at fault. I am less. I am not enough. I am not worthy.
Anxiety builds a reality inside my head where everything ends in turmoil. I end up hurt and alone. And I become scared. Scared that what I have drawn up inside of my mind really will happen. Scared that by taking risks, letting someone into my heart, trying new and exciting things, it will be bad. I will end up where I just was. Hurt. Broken. Bleeding. Shattered. Unable to recover. I have felt so much pain these last few years that I let my anxiety hold me back. Hold me back from life. Hold me back from making mistakes. Hold me back from living for me.
When these negative, overwhelming thoughts never stop, I never stop. Inside of me, I am fighting an internal battle. Against myself. Back and forth. Over and over. Again and again. Good versus bad. Me versus them. Me versus me. All the while this is happening inside of me, the conclusion is already made. I usually let the disease win. I believe the false thoughts that play nonstop in my head. I ruin whatever it is before it can happen.
I want to scream in frustration. I let the tears pour down my face. I see what this is doing to me. I acknowledge what I am missing out on. Just when I think I am making progress in my healing, I am pushed right back down. Facing that this disease and divorce devastate me still.
As I write this, I know what I need to do. I can’t let this win. I have to be bold. Be brave. Be fierce. Be me. Even though I am shaking. I am scared. I somehow have to do this all while fighting myself. Already, I am exhausted. I don’t know where to begin. Because I can’t make it stop.
This is anxiety.