Anxiety – the misunderstood illness

Yesterday I had a serious meltdown.

I am not generally the kind of person who cries often, but yesterday I cried for so hard and for so long that I struggled to breathe.

I have had anxiety for a long time, it takes over me.

Unfortunately it isn’t something I can control, or something that I can just get over.

Those who struggle with anxiety..know exactly what I mean.

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I often think that people consider anxiety to be a feeling of sadness, but anxiety is actually teamed with depression.

Often the work in tandem, rather like a wrestling tag team…when one needs to rest the other hops in never giving you a second to be at peace.

Most days my anxiety simmers beneath the surface, I never really allow myself to let people see my weakness.

I am much better at pretending everything is OK and painting on the fake smile.

Which is what I have done, right up until last night I got by with the fake smile.

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Have you every filled a glass with water so much that it overflows?
Even when you turn the tap off its still so full that water spills out.

This is the same with anxiety.

My anxiety is always so close to the surface that bits will spill out here and there.

Very much like that overfilled glass of water.

Have you reached that point where everything you do or say is ignored?
Where you feel increasingly insignificant – as if nothing you do is ever good enough?

I am constantly feeling this way.

I am a mother to 3 beautiful kids, and married to a wonderful man..but never feel like I deserve these things.

As though I am undeserving of happiness.

Interestingly, sadness is not my greatest enemy.

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Those who hear the words depression or anxiety think sadness is all we feel.

But it is so much more than that.

On a daily basis I feel a mix of self loathing, anxiety and emptiness.

Sadness tends to be the end result of everything spilling over.

And that is what happened to me just yesterday.

I felt like I was drowning, like I wasn’t seen, didn’t exist.
I was crushed under the weight of the pressure I put upon myself.

Right now I feel empty.
My heart feels full and heavy.
But my body..me as a person feels empty, inside.

I am working so hard to not feel this way.
I really, truly wish I could just feel ‘normally’ about myself.
I don’t like the word normal, but you understand my point.

To be able to wake up in the morning and not feel like a failure before my day has even begun.
To not feel as though my friends and loved ones are just putting up with me.
To be able to stand in a group of people I don’t know, and feel comfortable..willing to speak up and feeling confident.
To be able to be happy in my own skin and my own self.

To not feel empty.

Loves, if you have anxiety don’t feel like you cannot talk about it.

Anxiety is real. And it is an illness.

Don’t be fooled into thinking it is just a feeling of sadness.

It is so much more. And it is crippling.

Try to be the warm hug or the comforting shoulder for a friend who suffers in silence.

Believe me when I say, suffering in silence is the worst pain

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5 thoughts on “Anxiety – the misunderstood illness

  1. I love your post so much; I can relate to it on so many levels. The analogy of an overfilled cup is so accurate! The self loathing is what gets me the most, not the sadness. I thought I was the only one who felt like I didn’t deserve the things I had. Oftentimes, I wish something really bad would happen to me so that I can have a “reason” to feel the way I do.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can relate to this post so much. Thank you for sharing, people like us that suffer through this need to notice that we are not alone. I hope it gets better, even though, I know that as much as you want to, you can’t control it…

    Liked by 1 person

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