My anxiety is not something I normally talk about. In fact, I’ve never spoken about it in so much depth but I swore that for this new blog I was going to create meaningful content. Fashion and beauty are forever in my heart, and I will always want to blog about them, but I also want to create something different – something that speaks to your soul.
I feel that mental health issues are still a taboo. As time goes by I’m seeing more and more people trying to speak up such as From Claire’s POV, Dorianne from AskDorianne, Christabelle with this year’s Eurovision song called ‘Taboo’, Tamara Webb and Danita on topics like being true to yourself and others. I was inspired by all these individuals to speak up and share my own experience with anxiety. I’ve had a tough week – one of the toughest I’ve had in a while and in that state, I decided to write about it, not out of self-pity but out of concern that others might be feeling the same way and don’t know that a lot of people out there can relate.
I’ve honestly never been more real with the internet and, most of all, with myself.
‘I can normally tell as soon as my alarm switches on. It’s not about not wanting to get out of bed because I’m tired or I didn’t get enough sleep the night before. It’s about not finding enough strength to get out of bed. It’s about feeling chained to my bed, like I physically cannot move. My legs feel like they’re a hundred times heavier. The weight of my quilt cover feels like protection – like it’s guarding me from the horrible shitty day I know I’m about to have. I spend some time trying to figure out what could have triggered it again but most times I just can’t find an explanation because there is none. The truth is – it hits me when I’m least expecting it when I think things are going so smooth and when I almost forget that I struggle with anxiety.
Sometimes I’m tempted to give in and spend the day in bed but having struggled with anxiety for a while, I’m learning not to let it have that power over me. Getting out of bed is a struggle, but on my bad days, I consider it an achievement. Little tasks seem impossible to complete but I fight through it with every ounce in my body. And I’m not saying this to sound strong and brave. After years of not understanding what’s happening to my body, I figured out that the best way to deal with my anxiety is to fight through it. It might not work for everyone, but on most days, it works for me.
I put on a brave face and start my day. Sometimes simply getting on with my day does the trick. Something amazing might happen during the day and my anxiety melts away. But sometimes it doesn’t work that way. Sometimes I struggle through my day and run to the bathroom because I can’t breathe. I cancel meetings and events because I’m a mess and I literally can’t find the strength to communicate. Sometimes I pretend I’m fine and I even slightly forget that I’m having one of those days but then I crash when I find myself alone. The pressure of acting normal all day finally takes a toll on me when I find myself alone.
I remember one time, on a bad day, I forced myself to go to the gym because sometimes it does make me feel better. I was fine throughout the whole workout. It was a 2hr gym session with a friend and it felt amazing. I stepped into my car and thought that was just what I needed. I started the car and started driving. About 2 minutes in, I started shaking, uncontrollably, I honestly don’t know how I made it home. I was one of the worst panic attacks ever. My panic attacks vary from 10 minutes of struggling to breathe to days and weeks feeling like total crap.
I sometimes go out like a log at night because I’m so exhausted but I also go through times when I can’t stop my mind from racing and my heart from beating heavily. My mind goes through all the things I said, everything I did and try to make impossible connections and worry about every single thing.
This post is not about making myself a pity-party. It was honestly one of the toughest posts I’ve ever written. I wanted to share my experience, not because I’m an expert and I have everything under control. Clearly, I don’t. I wanted to share my experience with you to show you that if you’re struggling with anxiety, you are not alone and that it will get better and you will find your own way to take control over it.
Find someone to talk to and listen to your body.
Sometimes, all you need is to give yourself a break. It’s perfectly ok to let yourself fall down. Trust me, you will get back up again.