Today (officially yesterday) was a bad anxiety day. Really bad. I’ve gotten better at handling the attacks with the years; meditation, deep breathing, mindfulness. Shit works actually. Because it’s either that or be sucked into a mind vortex. But despite it all, yesterday was a 8.5, maybe 9. I was going to go out and as I lay on my bed, breathing deeply, trying to stay centred as I feel I’m being torn apart, I consider staying in. Apathy kicks in. What’s the point? I’ll come back anyway. On any other day I would have caved in. But not today. Today I realized the insidiousness in the apathy; it’s a slippery slope. Today it’s let’s not go out, cuz it’s not so important and you’re not feeling well. Seems legit. But tomorrow it’s let’s not try, you’re going to fail anyway. And next thing you know, that lackadaisical attitude is running the gamut of thoughts from apathetic to suicidal. So I went out even though I had no motivation to do so. And as I was walking I realized that anxiety has been an omnipresent element in my life for the past decade. It hit me that I had mistakenly attributed my anxiety to external forces and worked hard to avoid those, but in hindsight I see that the smaller I made my world by avoiding stuff, the bigger the anxiety grew. I thought going out triggered it. So for years I suffered from really bad agoraphobia, not going out for 8 months at one point. I thought school triggered it, I thought x, y, z triggered it, and all this time I hadn’t looked long enough at my life to notice that hey, I’m being duped here! All of a sudden, I remembered all the chill days where I had my junk, where I was in my room doing nothing, that I was in the grips of anxiety. Why? Because anxiety can’t be reasoned with. Anxiety is a disorder in the brain. MY brain. It’s a malfunction. So normal events that shouldn’t trigger my fight-or-flight response, do. And it’s only so long when you’re running away from the proverbial monster that you break down and just freeze. Stick your head in the sand. Hold your breath.
It’s hard to explain anxiety to someone who has never experienced it. It’s like when you go on dodgy websites that re-route you to ad pages with a bunch of pop-ups proclaiming you the winner of an iPhone or whatever, and wherever you click to exit it only takes you deeper into malvertisement nightmare via click-through destinations. Add on to that a really slow computer processor that makes the whole thing like wading through quick-sand whilst carrying cement blocks in your backpack.
And people tell me to hurry up and fix my life. Maybe not so crudely put but that’s what the underlying message is. Why aren’t you doing anything? You got unpaid bills piling. You’re only growing older. You’re missing out on life.
I try to speed shit up, but my brain just lags. I try to focus on the blank screen with the blinking cursor in front of me but all these damn popups and video ads that auto play keep blocking the damn screen! So yeah, you might as well tell me to fly by flapping my arms!