themighty logo

When You're Ready for College, but Your Anxiety Isn’t


My anxiety has always been a part of my life, always. Usually it’s just like a dull hum, always there but easy to ignore.

I finished my first year of university at a school only an hour away from home. After getting through the year only having a few panic attacks during exam season, my only thoughts were about how excited I was for my second year.

Now, here I am, less than 30 days since I started my second year, and I’m seriously debating if this was the right choice.The last 30 days have been good. Don’t get me wrong. I love living with my friends, and I love my school.

To everyone around me, that’s all they see — the happy me. Everything externally was going so well. I was eating right, working out, being social, balancing school, but internally, it was like there was a war going on against myself.

The me no one saw was the realest me. It was the real me having panic attacks almost every day for the past 30 days. The real me was on the phone with my mom every night, in tears about how miserable I was.

Living in a state of constant anxiety is exhausting. And that’s what was happening to me. I was constantly anxious about everything and everyone. It’s not just that anxiety you get before a job interview or exam, not even close.

It’s like the feeling you get when you’re leaning back in your chair. You go a tiny bit too far, and you’re about to fall back. You get a jolt of panic in your chest and a pit in your stomach for a few seconds. It’s that feeling but constantly.

This feeling has consumed me over the last month. I have felt like I have no control over my life and like my world is crashing down completely. Yet, I have to go about my life like everything is fine.

The feelings of anxiety soon morphed into isolation. My anxiety has kept me hostage in my bed, waking up every morning and immediately wanting to sleep all day. I began to either feel angry and frustrated or feel nothing at all. It was a terrible cycle of anger, emptiness and so much anxiety.

All this was happening at hyper speed, and I had to juggle school, living with five other people and family issues on top of it. I had no room for anxiety. I had my life to live.

I knew I wanted to be at school. I loved my friends, and every part of my wanted to be there. I was ready, and I was looking forward to the year. However, my anxiety has a different idea. My anxiety just hasn’t caught up to me yet.

Seeing as it’s only been 30 days, I have no idea what I’m going to do. Maybe I’ll stay. Maybe I’ll go, but that’s for me and my anxiety to figure out.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Image via Thinkstock.