Having an anxiety attack in the waiting room of the doctor’s surgery isn’t ideal. It’s quiet in the waiting room and there’s no hiding. I needed to be busy and fill in the waiting time, so I started writing everything that I felt and thought. These are the exact words that I recorded from inside my anxiety attack.
Like a mother bird protects her precious eggs, my eyes and ears need to be everywhere at all times. It’s not that I actually need to be everywhere at all times. It’s not that I have to know everything but rather that I must know if it concerns me.
Suddenly, it’s hot and I can’t breathe. My two conflicting barometers are at war with each other. My rational side wears yellow and is light and carefree. She knows that not everything concerns me and not everything that I hear is about me.
My irrational side, who wears red, laughs in her face and begins to doubt and criticise. Everything I hear IS about me. I’m going to be in trouble. I’m going to be criticised. I’m going to disappoint someone. She knows that when I’m not sunning myself in people’s positive perception of me, then I’m a failure. I am nothing. I am no one. She knows that I’m always in the wrong and she knows that she is powerful. She knows she has a firm hold on me. My rational side justifies and argues all of the sensible and caring arguments, but my irrational side always wins. She is stronger and far more powerful.
I can’t flip the power. My rational side has the will, but can’t find the way. She’s the buoy, being pushed under the water by my irrational side so she can keep her head above water. She’s drowning me.
I can’t breathe. My back is damp and itchy and my shirt is sticking to my skin. The man across me can surely hear my heart beating. How could he not? He just looked at me. I hold my breath. It’s obvious. I’m obvious. He knows.
My name is called.