Living with anxiety is extremely hard.
I never necessarily know when it's going to hit or when it's finally going to go away. I try to avoid things that might set it off, but being realistic, it's impossible to avoid everything. Some days I have no idea what is causing me to feel the way I do. The feeling of something not being right is constant. That heaviness in my chest that is so hard to carry, it feels like an extra fifty pounds of weight. The moments when it gets so bad that the only thing I can do is cry, or curl up in my safe place until it passes. The feelings of doubt, fear, and worry seem to consume me more often than I would like them too. I feel like I am constantly fighting a battle inside my own head. Some days I wake up and it's right there eagerly waiting to steal my day from me. Those minutes, hours, days and even months where it strikes seem to linger and feel like it is never going to go away.
I have had times where it has been harder to deal with than others. All throughout my middle school and high school years it has impacted me. Most recently though where I have felt it was this past fall at the beginning of college. The newness of going to college, moving away from home and having to completely immerse myself in an entirely new place set off my anxiety. I would wake up anxious and I would go to bed anxious. I was not necessarily worried about anything but I constantly had a pit in my stomach and a heaviness in my chest. I tried to make it go away by filling my days and made sure that I avoided anything that would possibly set it off. It still hung on. Multiple times I would call home in tears because I didn’t think I could deal with it. I thought nobody else could understand how I felt.
After seeking help from the counselor, I learned that it was completely normal to feel this way and that there were others who were struggling too. I realized that I wasn’t alone and I wasn’t weird for feeling the way I did. After seeing the counselor and continually pushing through the moments where it hit its peak, it slowly got better and better. It became much easier to manage. It still occasionally will interrupt my days, but not to the extent that it did at the beginning of this semester.
My anxiety is something that is never going to go away. There are going to be days where it is easier to manage and days where it feels like my world is spinning out of control. I know that it continues to make me a stronger person and shows me that I can’t have control over everything in my life. I am now thankful that I must deal with it in my life because it has helped shaped me to the person I am today. It has pushed me towards my goals and shows me that I can get through anything.