Life WIth Anxiety
Health and Wellness

Life WIth Anxiety

Written in love and solidarity.

20
Centre for Healthy Aging

Since I was fairly little, worrying has been something of a hobby for me. When I was sick, I would convince myself I had a rare, serious disease. When I went to school, I would cry at the slightest scolding. I didn’t ever want to leave home, because home was comfortable and safe.

As I got older, my anxiety got less obvious, but it took on new forms. For example, I was absolutely certain that people didn’t like me. That they actually thought and talked about not liking me often. Yes, that is an unhealthy and ridiculous thought, but I had no idea how to stop it.

I would replay conversations in my head over and over, meticulously deciding what I had done wrong. I would think about the vast stretch of years in front of me, and panic because I felt like I would never be an “adult.” I was scared about the past, about the future. About ending up alone.

I threw myself into school. I defined myself by the letter staring up at me from each paper. Which was fine until I got any bad grade. As soon as I saw “C,” or even “B,” my thoughts would go something like, "You’re not going to get into a good college now, or get a good job. If you had tried this wouldn’t have happened."

So I learned to manage. I read to escape whenever I could. I ate. I did a lot of theater—because on stage, I didn’t have to decide for myself what to say.

Then came the time when people got asked to dances and got into relationships. I’m not going to go into detail, but once again, my brutal self-critic was happy to do its job.

Senior year, I finally decided it was time to take control. I started talking to a counselor and was diagnosed with anxiety. I started journaling, doing breathing exercises and focusing on my friends who loved me (by the way, thanks guys, you’re amazing).

That year turned out to be fantastic. I became the captain of Scholastic Bowl, performed in the most fun play I’ve ever been in, made new friends and got into a great school. I had to go to prom without a date, but I had a good time and got to wear a nice dress. At the end of the year, I graduated as salutatorian!

Of course, it’s not like I’m absolutely cured now. Some days I still feel anxious, homesick or overwhelmed. But most of the time, I’m happy and having fun. I’m in a place where I feel safe and loved.

I am writing this for anyone who may be struggling with anxiety or other mental health issues, because I want you to know you’re not alone. I want you to know you are beautiful and important. I want you to know things get better. I promise.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

For a long time, Goya has been a staple in some Latino households. People carry around jars of Adobo when they eat at friend's houses and packets of Sazón Goya can be found in almost everyone's pantry. Many BuzzFeed lists, videos, and memes aimed at Latinos reference Goya somewhere.

But in a year that just keeps hitting us with bad news, Goya Foods CEO Robert Unanue said that Trump was an "incredible builder" and that the US was "blessed" to have him as president at a White House event on Thursday.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Unauthorized Plastic Surgery Is Totally Unethical, And Happening WAY More Often Than We Know ‬

Plastic surgery for cosmetic enhancements has you looking more botched than beautiful and it’s painful to see.

Coming from someone who could afford numerous cosmetic enhancing procedures I would never in a million years cut up my face or my body. I'm pretty emphatic and when I watch these brainwashed victims with bandages and chronic inflammation (swollen lips) I literally feel their pain.

Keep Reading... Show less

I've never been big on casual wear or athleisure. Most people who know me have never seen me in sweats. But, I do have those two or three pairs of sweats I can't resist climbing into the second I get home, the newest addition of which is the extra cozy Odyssey crewneck sweatshirt I got in an XL size to feel as close to being wrapped in a blanket at all times as possible.

In the past several months, I've started to expand my horizons, considering the ways in which I can bring my small wardrobe of comfortable bedroom clothing into the public. I've experimented with topping leggings and a sports bra with a denim jacket to the park, and an oversized sweatshirt worn as a dress, cinched at the waist with a belt when I'm out wearing leggings.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

How To Dress Like Your Favorite 'Insecure' Characters — Without Spending $2,000

We take a look at the fashion of Insecure season 4, and how you can create these looks yourself.

HBO

Insecure is one of my favorite shows ever. It really encapsulates what it's like being a Black 20-something, trying to navigate the many ups and downs of life. Issa, Molly, Kelli, and Tiffany are living their best lives in California while dealing with the twists and turns that come with that.

From life to relationships to careers, this show truly captures everything that runs through my mind on a daily basis. The show has a sense of realness and a strong frankness that makes you gravitate toward the characters and root for their success.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Making A Food Instagram Was The Greatest Silver Lining To Come Out Of My COVID-19 Experience

With the crazy and scary times that 2020 has brought, find comfort in the one thing everyone loves: food.

The waiter briskly moves towards us and stops just a foot away table, balancing the black serving tray stacked high with the ceramic plates that make-up our dinner. From memorization, he beings gently, but purposely, sliding everyone's orders in front of them and within seconds I'm am starring my meal.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

These Honey-Based Beauty Buys Are All We Need To BEE Our Glowiest, Hair To Toes

We're buzzing at each and every one of these.

Honey has been a staple in my Ayurvedic skincare routine since I was a kid and my grandmother used to make me homemade paste-like face masks by mixing chickpea flour, turmeric, honey, and yogurt together.

I now use honey head to toe — on my hair to make it extra shiny, on my face for its natural smoothing and anti-bacterial properties, and the rest of my body for its extreme textural and brightening benefits. Some people even use it on their armpits for honey's lightening effect on the skin.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

People Are Eating Salads For Breakfast, And It's About Time

As Americans we know we all need to eat more fruits and veggies, why not do it at breakfast?

I first started seeing a dietitian in late 2017. At the time, I was the heaviest I've ever been at about 210 lbs. At the first appointment, my dietitian asked me to record what I ate in a food diary so she could better understand my habits and give me better direction in changing my lifestyle. I did exactly that and returned a week later, diary in hand. After a cursory glance at the pages, she first remarked at how few fruits and vegetables I ate. Deep down I had already known that, but what I didn't know then was that I was far from being alone in that respect. According to a Times article, about 90 percent of Americans don't consume enough fruits and vegetables to meet current dietary guidelines. It's hardly rocket science as to why that is — many of our diets consist mainly of carbs and non-planted based protein. This isn't to say that carbs and protein are the devils; they're both parts of a balanced diet. However, vegetables and fruit are also part of a balanced diet — a part that often gets neglected. So, when I see people on Instagram eating salad for breakfast, I think to myself "It's about time!"

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Founders Of Color Q&A: Yarlap's MaryEllen Reider On Destigmatizing Women's Health

The father-daughter duo co-founded the brand and has since generated a passionate, dedicated community of women.

MaryEllen Reider

I was lucky enough to meet MaryEllen Reider over a decade ago as a fellow freshman in college. Since then, I had the luxury of being able to witness her evolution from the faithful companion I went to my first job fair with to the woman who is now a pioneer in destigmatizing the portrayal of women's reproductive health.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments