Updated: Oct 18, 2020
Here it comes, from nowhere to here. I was unsuspecting, as it fills me with heaviness. I feel it, throughout the night and within my dreams, getting closer as I wake. That sinking feeling, the melancholy. The sun has gone and the stars are stolen. Like smoke under a door, silently filling the space, it’s here.
I should have known when my body told me to sleep. Sleep so I can’t think. Sleep, because I’m being chased by an energy thief. There in the silence of sleep, the movie like dreams maintain the edge of my awakened hours with no escape. Albeit diluted, fragmented and more manageable.
Breathless, deep breaths disabled. Butterfly tummy and thoughts of dread. Unable to move, a body of lead and a fear of the outside world. My anxiety has come to visit, and as normal it was uninvited.
The older I get the wiser I am. I am incredibly thankful I can understand my own patterns and feelings. I know what to do and how to handle this debilitating anxiety, but for those who don’t even know what this is, I can’t imagine how scared and even scarred you would be. I’ve learnt that there is no shame in sharing how anxiety can affect you, as someone else will need to learn that they aren’t alone.
Seated in the despair, it feels like you’re completely alone. Trapped in a version of yourself you don’t recognise. For another person to be feeling that way too, or perhaps can empathise is the reassurance you need that you aren’t nuts, this is real to you and no, you just can’t click out of it.
When all you want to do is hibernate and lock yourself away, you should know that this won’t help. It’s not that you’re self centred, but you are consumed with your own thoughts. It’s crucial that you find something else to focus on, even if this is at home find a distraction. Get up, showered and ready, this step is the most important and the hardest. You maybe taking a shower and unable to lift your head, your arms and everything is in slow motion, have faith and do it slowly.
This is how I feel. I take it slow. I push myself now, because I know it makes me better. However, this is a constant fight between getting up and going back to bed. Slow movement, laboured breaths... this is all in my head. How can this be? But it is.
All of this was on Wednesday morning, completely debilitating and frankly a pain in my arse. Where did you come from? I’ve got plans! I forced myself up and out of the house to visit my refuge, my zen, my place... Kentwell Hall.
When the others asked how I was, I told them the truth. For years I’d hidden these feelings and now I share. When you share, you learn you’re not alone and boom, this lightens the load. I spent four hours pruning, picking, digging, weeding and harvesting in the most beautiful gardens I’ve ever known.
I worked through the rain, grounded by the Earth focused on my task. Left alone to expel my physical energy on nurturing nature is all the therapy I need.
Eco-therapy......and yes it’s a thing.
I felt better, energised, and soothed by both company and solitude. I was muddy, wet and satisfied. I went home, showered and slept for hours. The anxiety has dissipated and the sun and stars returned.
Anxiety is real, it’s a struggle and you learn to live with it. There is no shame in sharing... and the ‘me too’s’ out there are frequent. We are not alone, you are not alone.
Ps- I think pink tights Monday is happening !
Pps- I’m sad that summers almost done