Anxiety presents itself in many ways. For me, it shows up in one way that I recognise as well as my own reflection in the mirror and in another that I often don’t recognise as anxiety until well after the time.
When I recognise it as anxiety I FEEL it, REALLY feel it. My legs feel empty, my muscles feel stiff, I find it difficult to walk, to breath, I feel paralysed, I feel frightened, and I feel panicked. Living in the real world when I feel like this, I have no option but to function. In reality, I feel like I am not functioning at all I am simply making movements, slow on the outside yet chaotic on the inside movements. This anxiety can show up at any time. I panic, I catastrophise, I go in to the spiral, I can’t get away from this feeling, I can’t escape it, I am a slave, and I am frozen. This could last for hours or this could last for days, if I am really lucky it could last for weeks!
Other times anxiety shows up simply as a bitch, as a real bitch to everyone around me. Anxiety takes it out on anyone who happens to be in her pathway. This is when ‘I don’t know what is wrong with me’. I lash out at those closest to me. I say horrible, cutting, belittling, obnoxious, things to people I respect, people I love. And I don’t know where the things I say are coming from. I become a person I would really dislike should I meet them.
I am no meaner to anyone than myself.
I am sure that these 2 forms of anxiety link to each other somehow – one feeds off the other and both lead to sadness, deep, dark sadness. So sad that I feel it in my bones; I feel anxious, I am mean to others and myself, I feel guilty and embarrassed for being that way and then I am anxious again…you see how this bitch works?
So, why can’t I stop this? Why can’t I be less anxious? Why can’t I deal with the things that make me anxious?
I dislike the person I become when anxiety takes hold. Why would I want to continue to be this person when I can clearly see this happening?
The answer? I don’t know yet. But I can see it happening and that is step one. Rather than be mean to myself this time, I am going to be proud of myself for identifying this behaviour, for having the insight. And I am going to use that to grow as the person who is going to beat this bitch!