A Day in the Life of a Girl With Anxiety
Anxiety affects all kinds of people, all over the world. What I have found to be the most interesting aspect of anxiety is how easily it is hidden.
I have struggled with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) for years. After a recent discussion with my doctor, it became clear this was a condition I have dealt with since I was a child. It is not easy living my life with this struggle. It can hold me back, influence my decisions and affect the people I love.
Each day is an opportunity for my anxiety to determine what I’m going to do. On my good days, I do what I like to do. I go shopping with my friends, grab lunch with my mom or walk my dog. On my bad days, anxiety decides we’re not going to get up today. The hardest days are the days when anxiety wants to control me, but life is in the way.
For example, there are school days. It doesn’t matter how terrible I feel when I wake up, I don’t want to skip class because I am too anxious. So instead, I’ll get up late. I’ll wear a sweatshirt, a pair of sweatpants and no makeup to class. I won’t participate unless asked to, and I probably won’t pay much attention to what’s going on.
The best part is, no one around me knows a thing. To my classmates, I just woke up late. To my professors, I’m just not dedicated enough to my studies. To the strangers in the hallway, I’m not someone who cares about her appearance.
I’m sure anyone who lives with anxiety can agree with me when I say hiding anxiety may be one of the greatest talents people with anxiety have. There are few people who can see through me, see past the walls I have put up and see the pain I’m hiding from the rest of the world.
You can ask me what’s wrong, and I probably won’t even have a straight answer for you. If I do, then it’s not going to make much sense to you. It doesn’t even make sense to me. It’s just what I feel.
You see, the thing about anxiety is that it is internal. I get to decide what you see me struggling with, and I typically choose to keep my struggles buried deep inside.
A day in the life of a girl with anxiety looks just like a day in the life of a girl without it.
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