Running From My Brain
I can’t quite remember a time in my life where I didn’t have anxiety, even when I was younger, my anxiety presented itself in constant overthinking, need to have constant approval from authority, and continuous anxiousness. There is a memory from when I was 10 years old, that has been engraved in my brain ever since. I was working on my science fair project, my teacher was away for the day and I ended up finishing my project early and decided to skip a little bit ahead on some of my visuals. I can’t remember how but at some point in that process, I realized that I was going too far ahead from where our teacher told us to, suddenly I broke out into tears was profusely shaking, and felt really nauseous. Eventually I was sent to the nurse, and I just remember sitting on a cold plastic chair, with a box of tissues, being so perplexed as to why my body was having this reaction- as kid with a wild imagination, not knowing what was going on mentally with me was absolutely terrifying. To the average person, I think it would’ve just looked like I was upset, but to a trained eye who can see the signs, it was an anxiety attack.
In hindsight, I desperately needed therapy, or something along those lines, but I was so shy to share my feelings with my parents or any adult around me, I continued to be quiet. Little did I know that being quiet and saying nothing was doing such worse damage that I ever thought, I was letting my anxiety fester inside of me and grow deep into my habits. I obviously don’t blame my 10 year old self for being afraid to speak up, but I wish at that age there was someone in my life who could have come to me and told me that I wasn’t weird or broken, just suffering from thoughts that I had absolutely no control over.
As you can imagine, I learned to live with this anxiety, but not in a healthy, actively-coping-and-working-through-my-problems kind of way, more of a push your thoughts deep down inside and continue to shame yourself until you no longer remember any feelings of anxiety. I lived with these habits for my whole life, and it made everything so much harder; my logic was that if I ignored my anxiety, it would just disappear one day, which in reality, holds no rationale.
Today, I hear too often, the name of a disease being thrown around so lightly by people who simply need an excuse. Anxiety is serious condition, and it’s scares me when people use the word as a means for attention.
I hope whoever is reading this, whether you related with absolutely every word and have known the feeling of anxiety your whole life, please don’t let yourself be quiet anymore than you have already, you deserve to feel freedom from these thoughts. Or, if all of these feelings are completely foreign and you have no idea what I’m talking about, take the time each day to be respectful of people’s boundaries and what they might be working through.