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Why My Anxiety Means I Can't Shut My Emotions Out

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I feel. I feel everything.

I immerse myself in things that bring me happiness, yet if one thing goes wrong, that feeling is knocked down and overtaken. I become corrupted by panic, worry and failure. Overthinking everything that happens, trying to rationalize the compulsive thoughts draining my remaining energy, I am lost. Lost on a road I shaped, not knowing where I intended to go. There is no desired destination, yet anxiety seems to be the unsolicited conclusion.

I laugh. I cry. Mostly at the same time. I try to laugh off my pain, simply to eliminate the reasons why I get so upset. I get frustrated because I am mentally ill and I never wanted this to happen.

Some days I can accept my illness, and I use it to build bridges for myself: I go to class, I succeed in an exam, I spend time with those around me. Other days, I hate the way I am. I hate that I overanalyze everything — always assuming the worst. Every day is different for me, emotionally and physically.

Trust me, I know when there is nothing rational to worry about. Something small can be blown out of proportion and it becomes my every thought, growing and growing until I can no longer escape it. I know that shouldn’t be the case. There are infinite questions I ask myself; it’s never as easy as yes or no. Each indefinite thought is attributed with a hopeless emotion.

I am scared. I am scared of being hurt.

I find it difficult to enjoy things other people my age enjoy, because those things are scary to me. That doesn’t mean I cannot do those things, but I have to battle with myself to do the things that terrify me. I have to lower my guard slightly, and it hurts. It hurts because I know what can happen – I have fixatedly measured the chances of every possibility.

I know how fragile I have become, and people tend to walk on eggshells around me. They shouldn’t have to do that. Yes, unexpected things can trigger my dreaded panic attacks, but that doesn’t mean people should avoid discussion with me in fear of that happening. I am getting stronger; I will need to face my anxieties.

Right now, I am doing the best I can.

My mental illness doesn’t define me; I am still the same girl.

I just feel a lot.

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Thinkstock photo via BalazsKovacs

Originally published: March 15, 2017
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