The worst thing about anxiety, is that it comes when there’s no reason for it. I can become anxious just getting up to go to work on an average day, I can get anxious that I’ll be away from the house when I go out, once I’m out, all I want to do is go back home. The urge to go back home stems from years of feeling sick, returning home and then feeling fine again. A sure sign it was just an anxiety attack. I’ve begun to be more open about it with people, my friend Emma knows what happens and is there to help me when it all goes Tits up. Once just from riding on a bus and not being able to see because it was dark, I entered into a slow boil melt down. I could feel it coming but all too often I work to suppress it and hope that it goes away. This is my way of managing my anxiety, though 9/10 it puts it somewhere else meaning even worse things begin to happen. This particular evening I knew I had to get off the bus. It was a shock to Emma when she saw it had gone this far, but she was great and quick to reassure me that stopping was alright if I needed to. We sat on the beach for about half an hour, me shaking, feeling like I wanted to cry but just not being able to. Times like this make my heart ache. It makes me wonder how on earth this happens and how I got like this.
Although I suffer from anxiety, I try not to let it take over my life, in my job I ensure I remain confident in what I’m doing, if only on the outside, when often the inside of me is crushed. My latest attempt to ignore my anxiety is my holiday to Seoul, I have been researching for weeks, where to go, what to do. All this is on my own. I enjoy my own company, I can cope very well not seeing anyone for a day. I use Skype regularly to talk to friends back in England and find it a fantastic link to the real friends back home.
In Seoul there’s a chance I’ll have no wifi, though I’m told it’s everywhere, the hotel boasts cable Internet. it’s crazy that in these modern times our reliability on the Internet is something we fixate on, but for me, it’s my passage to the outside world. This isn’t the only thing that’s making me think about Korea. More than anything, just the fact I would be leaving my hotel room fills me with what I can only describe as a dread. What if I go out to somewhere and start to feel ill, that’s always my main worry and it feels my head constantly.
Me and my mind seem to be two very different entities. I would love to go away, to explore, eat new foods, try to dishes and generally soak up the atmosphere of this new city, after all, I’ve been hardly anywhere in Asia and I should bloody well make the most of it. I see myself as a free spirit, someone who loves adventure and spontaneity when my brain just wants me to stay in the safety of my hotel room.
“Maybe you’ll be hiking when you get a stomach upset!”
“What if you eat food and it makes you feel Shit?”
I’m not even there and I know what will happen, it’s something I can see becoming a big part of my trip. I just have to hope that the adrenaline kicks in. I was given valium by my doctor the last time I visited her, just low dose to get you down from the metaphorical anxiety tree. Thing is, I haven’t taken them yet because I know once I do, I’ll want to take them all the time. At the end of the day, I wish this would all just dissappear.
The last few weeks my anxiety has got worse and worse. I can’t remember a time I was able to let go of my anxiety. It’s now completely taken over my digestive system to the point that I am constantly wondering if I’m going to have an upset stomach because of it. I feel trapped inside a body that is both mine and some other entity. Meditation and sleep no longer work. When I begin to relax my body shuts down and creates the most horrific illnesses, or at least the symptoms. It stops me leaving the house and getting on with things I want to do. I look at other people I know and wonder how the hell they just walk outside the house in the morning.
On the outside I’m who I think I am, because I try to push myself out of my comfort zone, but that makes people all the more suprised when they find out about my anxiety. One friend said “but you’re so strong, you can’t suffer from anxiety”. Sometimes, I think it’s the strongest of us that doubt ourselves the most.
I’m alone, it’s me against the world and I am trying my best.