How My Grief and Anxiety Are Connected

Life’s natural cycle can be a beautiful nightmare.

The joy brought upon a new birth for a family is celebrated, though when a relative, a friend or a partner is taken away, it can break our hearts. Especially when it’s unexpected.

I lost three close relatives in the span of 11 months last year, and I am still struggling. I have never truly accepted my losses, as I fell to pieces over the unnatural occurrences of lives that fell too short.

Dealing with both grief and anxiety is tiring, and I’ve considered that maybe they are linked. Perhaps they’re connected through invisible ties: the emotions I locked away, and the fears I hold onto, pulled tightly together.

Now, I keep my guard up, but I love intensely.

I live in fear of those close to me being taken away and that I may never say goodbye to those I love, so I constantly try to tell them their importance in my life. Part of my anxiety means I compulsively calculate every possibility that could occur, and I choose to believe the negative ones will happen. As well as this, my separation anxiety means I try to hold on to those close to me and I struggle being apart from them. I become afraid if I’m not with them, then bad things will be inflicted onto them and we will both experience the consequences.

This can become inconvenient, as I’m a 17-year-old who is being encouraged to explore, and experience new things. But I’m too scared to leave the safety net of my childhood home.

We’re always taught the dangers of attachment, but why would you prevent yourself from being happy, just because one day, something may end. We don’t know when that day will come, so why dwell on it? Perhaps you can never be prepared for it, but I believe it is so important not to limit your happiness just because of life’s inevitable conclusion for everyone.

Death is never going to be easy.

I have found that I love to love, and although it hurts when someone is taken away from me, I know I will accept this one day. I cannot allow it to hurt me, so I will always choose to love.

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

Unsplash photo via Eddy Lackmann.

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

Related to Grief

Seven Years of Seven After Losing My Husband

There is a story that floats around the widowed community about every cell in our body being replaced within a seven-year time span. Meaning, by the time seven years pass, there is not one cell remaining that “knew” your departed loved one. As it turns out, that is not entirely true (because of course I [...]
Two women, one holding a microphone with hand on cheek of other woman, both looking down

We Need to Bring Grief Out From the Shadows

Grief is still kept behind the darkened curtains most of the time, despite the fact that it will touch almost everyone’s life at one point or another – several times over if you’re fortunate enough to love so much and so many. But it seems to me that many people fear that grief is contagious, [...]
yellow sunflowers

6 Tips to Surviving Mother's Day Grief

In 2012, when I was 14, I lost my mum to cancer. I’m now 19, and of course, I’m still affected every day by this loss. Mother’s Day is particularly hard for those who are grieving their mothers. Over the years I’ve found ways to help cope during this time, and I wanted to share [...]
elderly man wearing suit with 21-year-old son wearing university graduation robes and smiling

Why I Haven't Begun to Grieve, Even 6 Years After My Father's Death

Six years ago, on May 12, 2011 at 6:52 a.m., I got a screaming call from my mum. “He’s gone,” she said, barely able to speak through her wails. “Get over here quick, he’s gone, he’s gone.” I don’t remember much about the morning my father died, nor the days after. It’s all a blur, [...]