Choose Your Hard

We all know someone who thinks they have it worse than everyone else. The complainer. Maybe it’s a friend of ours, or a coworker, or a relative, or (yikes) maybe it’s us. The negative Nancy, the person who always has an ache or a pain to whine about, the person who never sees the glassContinue reading “Choose Your Hard”

Is it my personality or my anxiety?

It’s a Friday night in 2004. I’m a junior in high school and all my friends are heading to the football game. They’re pumped, all chattering excitedly about the boys they like, the cute football players, the events of the school week. I smile and mirror their excitement but nobody knows I’m pretending. I’d ratherContinue reading “Is it my personality or my anxiety?”

I forgot what it felt like to feel normal

I had learned to live with my anxiety. It wasn’t the monster it once was, but it was there, never letting me relax completely. I was coping with it, functioning, at least from the outside. I thought maybe this was as good as it was going to get, which wasn’t so bad. Sure, it suckedContinue reading “I forgot what it felt like to feel normal”

When I Fell Apart

Just like anyone who’s ever lived, I’ve had my share of struggles. Most of mine, maybe all of mine, have fear at the root of them. It’s always been the thorn in my side and there have been periods of my life where fear and anxiety have lain dormant and other times where they’ve comeContinue reading “When I Fell Apart”

The Opposite of Who You Are

Intrusive thoughts. If you have struggled with an anxiety disorder of any kind, you know how torturous intrusive thoughts can be. They seemingly appear out of nowhere and, in your heightened state of anxiety, you fixate on them, even though you don’t want to, even though they’re bothersome, even though they frighten you. Out ofContinue reading “The Opposite of Who You Are”

Confessions of a People Pleaser

I’m pretty in tune with what other people are feeling. I don’t really know how to explain it, but I can sense things about people. I don’t mean it to sound hokey or weird or like I’m some kind of psychic. It’s not like that. It’s more that I’m a sensitive person and I canContinue reading “Confessions of a People Pleaser”

Morphing Anxiety & Labels

I’ve written about this before but I used to feel a lot of shame about being diagnosed with GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder). Even though I was struggling, there was something about the official diagnosis that didn’t sit well with me. Then, when I finally got used to the idea of that diagnosis, it changed toContinue reading “Morphing Anxiety & Labels”

Miracles

2011. I had just gotten married and instead of newlywed bliss, I was more anxious than I had ever been in my life. I told myself it was just the transition that was causing these anxious feelings, these bizarre symptoms, these thoughts of hopelessness. I kept thinking that one day I would wake up andContinue reading “Miracles”

The Diagnosis

F41.1. GAD, or, Generalized Anxiety Disorder. It’s a helpful code for medical professionals, for insurance companies, maybe for Therapists. It’s not the most helpful code for the person being diagnosed. At least it wasn’t for me. When my anxiety got really bad, right after my wedding, I remember telling the Doctor that I thought itContinue reading “The Diagnosis”

The Weird Symptoms

Heart racing, dizziness, sweaty palms, nausea, heightened senses, feeling like you’re losing your mind or about to die – unpleasant to say the least, but these are some of the symptoms that most people think of when they think of anxiety. The more “common” ones, if you will. That’s not to say that they don’tContinue reading “The Weird Symptoms”