I'm so fucking tired.
I'm exhausted from feeling anxious for 3 weeks straight. I'm exhausted from existing on adrenaline & coffee during the day and lying awake at night worrying about work. I don’t have the energy to challenge negative thoughts. I don't have the mental willpower. At the moment, it's a struggle just to get through the day.
Fucking anxiety. I hate that it takes over your body as well as your mind. Your mind creates a state of panic and your body blindly reacts. I feel like my body is flooded with adrenaline during the day, so much so that by the time I get home, I'm exhausted and can barely stay awake to eat dinner. But as soon as I'm in bed, my minds spins and spins like a merry-go-round and conjures up all kinds of bullshit to worry about.
And I'm too tired to fight it.
I hate my anxiety.
I hate that it makes me feel so weak.
I hate that it makes me afraid to do things.
I hate that I’ve always had it, and feel like I always will have it.
I hate that I can't enjoy my life.
I wrote that last night, just before I went to bed. I was feeling so shitty I could barely think straight. Today, I feel ok.
This is what I find hard about living with anxiety.
When I'm in it, the world feels terrifying. I get overwhelmed by minor things, I exhaust myself by worrying, and then I worry about the fact I'm worrying so much. When it's bad, I can't leave the house, and when it's really bad, I can't get out of bed.
Then, I'll have a good day, a good week or month. And because I'm outside of the anxiety, I tell myself nothing's really wrong with me, that it's just me being over-dramatic. That I just need to meditate, exercise more, drink less coffee, socialise more, and that will keep it at bay. But inevitably, before long, something will trigger it and I'll be back in an anxiety spiral. A new job, an uncomfortable social situation, a moment of self-doubt and BAM! Back at the bottom of the black hole and feeling like I can't climb out of it.
Anxiety is sneaky. It'll worm it's way in when you least expect it. I can be out on a cliff walk on a beautiful day, coastline stretching before me, and suddenly a voice whispers yes, but what about that thing you have to do at work next week? You should really be worrying about that. My chest gets tight, my stomach ties itself in a knot, and that's it - day ruined. Or an innocent remark from a loved one can cause me to self-analyse and criticise myself so much, it's like living with a spiteful bully in my own head.
Anxiety is smart. It knows to wait until you're at your weakest and your defences are down. It lies dormant, it waits until it senses that you're tired, or feeling vulnerable, and then it pummels you with worry and self-hatred.
Anxiety is monotonous. It doesn't really have original thoughts. It's just a constant low-level hum of you're not good enough, you're not good enough. The difficulty is challenging that thought when you've been hearing it for 30 years.
Counselling is helping, I think. It's helped to acknowledge that this isn't a healthy way to live. It's helped to realise that there are ways to challenge negative thinking. But it's hard to break a habit of a lifetime. These neural pathways are well-trodden and it's going to take a long time to carve out a new path. One where I don't hate myself.
I don't really have a point to this post. I have anxiety, and it's shit. I want to get better, but I feel like I can't.
At the moment, all I can do is write about it.