a letter to anxiety
You’re here today. You have been in the background for a while but you got so impatient that I wasn’t really acknowledging you that you got bigger and louder. Yesterday you plopped down next to me and then you fussed and stirred and stressed until I could feel you throughout my whole body and had no choice but to let you in. You made my stomach churn, my face hot, my breath shallow, my heart pound against my chest and my mind race. She ran and ran until she found reason. She found question after question that might make sense of why I was feeling so afraid. She made me imagine terrible things happening to my loved ones, and think about how unstable my stage of life is, and how confusing being a human in the world can be. You kept me awake all night as I listened to old episodes of TV I love to drown you out, to only have you rear your head even more intensely when the TV went silent. Yesterday was a hard, scary, drowning day.
So today, we tried something else. I woke up after very little sleep and instead of yelling at you for ripping me apart, I say good morning. I wipe the sleep from your eyes and allow you to follow me into the kitchen to prepare for the day. I buckle your seatbelt when we go to physical therapy. I have you climb on my back as I work out. We come home and I open the door for you, letting you in.
Because you will come in whether or not I welcome you.
So welcome, let’s figure out how to be in this body together. Today is not good but it is better than yesterday, and we will try again tomorrow. We will be gentle with each other as we do the next right thing, one moment at a time. Because we have to, don't we?