Thursday, October 22, 2009

anxiety

sometimes, i feel like i'm the only person in the world who struggles with anxiety. of course, that's part of what all people who struggle with anxiety feel, which sucks, because worrying alone always makes matters worse and makes your mind feel like it's on constant spin cycle, like the washing machine, wanting for rest and peace all the time but never getting one second of it, really.

i will make a confession to the internet: about six years ago, i was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. and it makes so much sense to me, because when i think back on school from an early age, the first week was always like a living hell for me. everything was new, nothing was familiar, i had to make new friends - which takes time, and people with anxiety are low on patience - and had to be away from my family, who i had made into my rock and my refuge. then, sometimes, waves of worry would come over me for no reason at all. the only language i had for it was a mental image i got, of me standing in the ocean (in carlsbad, if you must know, wearing my red plaid one-piece bathing suit) with sets of overhead waves hitting me again and again and again; allowing no time to get my feet under me.

so as the years have gone by, i've sought relief from my anxiety in different ways - often through other people, or seeking control of different variables, or trying to get perfect grades and test scores, or counseling, or talking, or hiding, or medication, or prayer. but it still haunts me, nips at my ankles and clouds my mind, this unwanted friend.

now, my life circumstances include almost all new things - only even more intensively than the beginning of the school year or going to Europe for a semester. i'm married, and we live in a new house, and i quit my old job and don't have a new one waiting for me, and this is hard. zack bears a great deal of this burden with me, but i'm still working on the extent to which we should carry it together and the part where i bring it to God and lay it at his feet.

i had a fun coffee time with a friend this morning, and she mentioned that she leans toward anxiety at times, too. cognitively, i know i'm not the only one. but experientially, i feel lonely in my anxiety.

all of this is to say something publicly that i think is good to say publicly, and also to issue a giant thanks to zack, who i love with all the sappy, grateful, fierce love that i have. and the rest of the reason i don't really know. but there it is.

5 comments:

Sarah said...

Thank you for sharing.

Kristyn said...

i appreciate your honesty and vulnerability!

rachel said...

thanks for sharing girl. you are not alone.

Lisa said...

hey Lo. I didn't know you quit your job...wow. thanks for sharing in this post. I need your new address when you can please :) And I'm excited to see more wedding pictures besides the one that is your profile pic.

Erica.Michelle. said...

I love your heart and your warmth and your honesty

...and I like the way you put words around anxiety - it is so helpful and really moving for me to read. Luv u.