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When You Wonder If Your Anxiety Will Last Forever

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As someone who has a diagnosed anxiety disorder, I spend a lot of time thinking about anxiety.

I get up every morning and do my best to get through the day. My condition has been improving, so it isn’t as difficult as it used to be; however, I still have my rough days. I still have days where I lie on my bed in my dorm room, wondering if I’m good enough, smart enough, competent enough, empathetic enough… the list goes on. For lack of a better word, these days really suck, and for me, they also raise this question:

“When will these sucky days end?”

After Googling “how many people deal with anxiety forever,” I was greeted with articles that told me anxiety could be eliminated, but the longer I walk on this journey, the farther I think that is from the truth.

I know all the coping mechanisms. I see a counselor regularly. A 20mg dose of medication runs through my veins every single day — and yet, I still wonder.

Is this my life forever? Is a bi-weekly visit to the counselor’s office something I need to pencil in for the rest of eternity? Should I just invest in a lifetime supply of my medication?

I can make it work. As a photographer, I will still photograph, as it brings me peace. I will still work out to find relief. I still go to my counseling sessions and take my medication without any semblance of reluctance.

Even so, I cannot help but wonder.

I don’t ask these questions to jeopardize anyone’s road to recovery. As someone who started on this path a year ago, that is the last thing I want to do. I write this letter to those who feel like me. I write this to say that they’re not the only one asking these questions because I know that sometimes, I feel like I am. I write this to say I’m there, too.

Maybe we will find the other side together.

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Originally published: December 18, 2017
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