Kung Hei Fat Choi!
It’s Chinese New Year in Hong Kong and tonight I did something I would never have been able to a year ago. Literally.
This time last year my friend and me were supposed to be watching the New Year’s fireworks and my anxiety was at a peak of resistance. It took me all my strength and energy to just leave the house. My friend came to my town, had a meal with me and every step we were like “We could just stay here if we want – no pressure” we were taking it in baby steps. Now I am not one to miss out on things and therefore I took a deep breathe got on the first tram we saw and took off to Sun Yat Sen Park. It wasn’t too busy but my body was going wild. It’s so difficult to describe that feeling, it’s just like your whole existence wants you to turn around grab the nearest taxi and get home under the duvet forever more. We managed to stay and watch enough until the sky became one mass of smoke and smog and then decided to leave. I couldn’t even go for a drink after, we had buy drinks from 7/11 and go back to my apartment for me to feel any kind of secure.
So this year I was determined. I had a conversation with my Doctor about my medication and asked him honestly where it was all going. He upped my dosage and said as soon as I I stopped feeling anxious altogether, we’d start to take the dosage down slowly.
That time is now.
Tonight I was on fire. I went to a place I knew would be busy, the IFC Terrace. I left the house with no problem at all, got to a nice spot on the terrace and all this…on my own. Usually when I’m on my own it’s a mission to get myself to stay without running back home. Today was different, I wondered around the shops, knowing full well the fireworks didn’t start for another hour, found a place to sit, got myself a coke and generally chilled. After the fireworks ended, and yes I was only able to see 30% of them…., I took it slow, chilled on the rooftop for a bit knowing that it’d be busy, the kind of busy I couldn’t be bothered with rather than I dreaded. I slowly made my way down to the MTR taking routes only the professionals are aware of when it comes to slow tourists. I went to Pret, walked through the airport express, bought some water and walked back to Central. Then when feeling tired at this point, I got the MTR, not a taxi, there was no panicking, no wondering if I would get home before I vomited everywhere. I took it slow and actually enjoyed the atmosphere.
The next few months are going to be full of challenges and I know I have to work hard to keep on top of myself, my feelings and my anxiety. But for this small thing to have happened makes me proud of myself and sometimes that means more than anything anyone else could tell you.
“Sometimes you just have to congratulate yourself.”