I don’t usually write serious posts. In fact I’ve been so busy with work I haven’t posted much at all this past year. I’m going to write about something that changed my life in every way… anxiety. If you have never had it before than it can seem silly and you might think ‘why can’t you just chill out and stop worrying.?’ If you have had it, you know that it’s the worst feeling ever.
The girl I used to be
I used to be a bit a crazy, going to clubs, I loved socialising, going exploring, meeting new people and I was confident. However during my last year at university, things started to change. I felt sick all the time, I had headaches, I thought I was going to faint and the only place I felt safe from this was in the safety of my bedroom on my own. The thought of going out, made me scared of feeling sick and fainting, so I stayed in my safe place. Then, came the constant fear of what if what’s happening to me is a brain tumour, what if I’m dying? It’s at this point that my anxiety spiraled out of control.
It’s hard to be friends with someone who is constantly bailing on your plans, constantly thinks they’re ill and would rather spend all day in their room watching repeats of One Tree Hill than go out for drinks with you. Also, it would have been harder baring in mind I was their go-to girl for a night on the drink. So, I lost contact with friends and I found it hard to explain to them why. They felt I didn’t make an effort and I would ‘classically’ bail on a night out, in reality I would have done anything to make myself feel normal enough to be with them.
If you have ever had one, you know that they are horrific. You genuinely think it’s either never going to end or you’re going to die. My head goes light, you shake and you cannot breath properly. The world closes in around you and your heat beat won’t stop racing. Eventually, it goes but it drains you and you end up crying as a release. But then there is the added joy of being anxious about having a panic attack thus causing a panic attack… eugh it’s exhausting.
Not surprisingly, cutting yourself off from the world and living in a constant anxious fear can make you depressed. It got to the point, where I genuinely couldn’t see the point of being on this planet anymore. I didn’t see anyone so no-one would miss me, and I wanted a way out of the constant dizziness, the heart palpation’s and the feeling like death every day. I locked myself away and I couldn’t see a way out of it.
I met my boyfriend nearly two years ago, and it took me a long time to actually get the confidence to go and meet him. I had to self medicate with wine through the whole date. But, after a while he took my mind of my anxiety. We went out together and eventually it seemed like it wasn’t really an issue anymore, like I could do anything as long as he is with me. When I had feelings of anxiety I could identify with it and stop it before it escalated.
Well right now, it’s hit me like a tonne of bricks! My anxiety has mutated into something I hate. And what’s worse is that it’s no longer just myself that it affects. My boyfriend gets the brunt of it. I’ve started a new job and I find it near impossible to make friends because my social anxiety either makes people feel uncomfortable or I don’t want to go for after work drinks or I don’t see why people would want to be friends with me. So, I’m starting to feel very insecure and I have very little self-worth which makes wonder why the hell my boyfriend is with me. Then comes the anxiety and panic attacks of him leaving to be with someone who is more fun, more sociable, thin, beautiful. Is he going to get fed up of me always being self-depreciating? hello… panic attack. Obviously, I know that the depression I feel now is caused by the anxiety so it’s not as bad as in the beginning.
I’m just worried that this cycle will never end
It’s hard to figure out how to push through this state when you’re in the middle of it. But, I’ve made contact with a councilor to try and get myself out of it. I hope that I don’t end up pushing my boyfriend away, I know he’ll be supportive as long as he can see I’m trying. I am also going to see my family as there is nothing like the cuddles from a two year old niece to inspire you into getting better :)