When Anxiety Hits You on a Bad Day

It all looked like a typical day at our house: kids are screaming, throwing the cushions, demanding snacks every half an hour, and keeping me busy as usual.

But today didn’t feel like a typical day. I sat down at the table and cried — for no reason and for many reasons. I sat down to calm my anxiety and try to look all calm and coherent, but deep down I wasn’t. My body was under lockdown.

I felt like I’ve been carrying a weight on my shoulders for so long. They ached. My body was in a state of high alert, my breathing was fast, my heart was pounding in my ears, I felt dizzy and most of all, I felt like it was the end of the world.

That feeling of doom is what makes me hate those panic attacks, feeling like I’m out of control, there’s no escape, even if I’m doing nothing more than sitting on my sofa and watching my kids play.

That innate feeling that tells you to run, to hide, that it’s dangerous.

I felt I needed to hide under my blanket, close the door to the surrounding world; my mind was racing with a million thoughts. It takes so much strength to calm it down.

Sadly, having chronic illness means you deal with a lot of stress in your life. Medications also sometimes causes the anxiety as a side effect.

Your mind play tricks on you, makes you think you’re “crazy,” or you’re going to die. Your mind thinks it can predict the future and that you should trust it because it wants the best for you, right?

Wrong. My mind at these situations is neither my friend nor my enemy. My mind was designed to protect me but sometimes the way it overestimates its assessment of danger.

One thing I kept telling myself: this is negative energy that needs to flow out of you. If you want to cry, go ahead, give it an outlet. If you want to scream, go ahead, let it out.

And I did cry, for no reason or all the reasons in the world.

My daughter asked me, “What’s wrong, Mommy?”

I smiled and answered, “Nothing, Mommy needs to calm down, and sometimes a tear is all I need.”

That overwhelming feeling still fills my body and mind, feeling tired and sad, feeling useless or weak, but I still fight every day through them because fighting is all I have.

Crying is not a sign of weakness, rather a sign of strength. For me it means I had a long battle, and I need to rest.

Image via Thinkstock.

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Anxiety

sketch , face of a beautiful girl with decoration of flowers

The Choices I Can Make on the Good and Bad Days With My Mental Challenges

Although the occurrences of my battle with anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder may appear comical to some (like the time I nearly bailed on an amazing weekend in California for sudden fear of taking a flight at night), the day-by-day battle is no laughing matter. There are good days. There are bad days. And there are real [...]
paper hearts hanging from clothespins

What It’s Like to Be in Love When You Have Anxiety

This piece was written by Jazz Crosby, a Thought Catalog contributor. “Chill out.” “There’s nothing to worry about!” “Nothing bad is going to happen.” “You worry too much!” We’ve all heard one of the above statements at least once throughout our lifetime. But, for someone with anxiety, the smallest things can conquer our thoughts and [...]
woman and her boyfriend in laguna beach

What You Don't See in My Favorite Vacation Picture

This week marks 10 months of my relationship with a powerfully caring and understanding guy. And this picture is one of my absolute favorites of us. Yes, we’re all smiles. Yes, the scenery itself had us beaming in bliss. Yes, we had a truly amazing time that weekend in Laguna Hills, California. Nope, it wasn’t a perfect weekend. It was [...]
The author giving a Ted Talk

What It's Like to Give a TEDx Talk About Anxiety as Someone With Anxiety

As someone who experienced severe anxiety and chronic panic attacks, the idea of putting myself out there was at the top of the “Do Not Attempt” list. But if I was going to hold true to the promise I made to myself, I didn’t see any other way around it. “Get comfortable with being uncomfortable,” [...]