My Anxiety Is Driving Me Insane

God & Man

I stay up at night, because my heart is beating too fast. My lungs are sucking in air too fast. My thoughts are racing too fast, making me terrified of what the future will bring.

Sometimes, the future I’m focused on is tomorrow. Sometimes, it’s a week from now. Sometimes, it’s ten years from now. It doesn’t really matter.

Even if I’m stressed about an event that’s marked months later on my calendar, I can’t calm myself down, I can’t rationalize my fears.

I can’t tell myself that there’s no reason to worry about it now, that I can think about it later. No. My anxiety doesn’t understand time. It tortures me for as long as it wants.

That’s why I end up worrying about things that would never even run through the mind of a ‘normal’ person. Things that are so small and insignificant to the rest of the world — but matter so damn much to me.

What if the bus is late? What if I get on the wrong bus? What if I have to stand on the bus? What if someone sits next to me on the bus? 

The last thing I want to do is embarrass myself. I don’t want to draw attention to my existence. I just want to bleed into the background. I want everyone to walk past me without giving me a second glance.

I’m the type of person that feels the most comfortable with a routine. I like to do the same exact things day after day, so that I know what to expect.

I hate surprises. I hate being caught off guard, because I can never think on the spot. I can’t come up with conversation topics unless I think them up ahead of time. I can’t say hello aloud unless I repeat the word in my head over and over beforehand.

I might not talk that much in person, but I have endless conversations with friends and coworkers inside of my head. I try to run every situation through my mind so I’m prepared for anything they could possibly say to me.

But when the time comes, I still feel like I’m unprepared. Like I’m fumbling to do the right thing.

And you know what sucks the most?

There are hours, sometimes even full days, when I’m fine. When I’m capable of looking a stranger in the eyes without feeling like I’m being choked. When I actually think that I’m getting better, that my anxiety is fading into my past.

And then those nights come where I can barely function. I want to cry out of frustration. I want to hit something, throw something. I want to turn into someone else, someone with a handle on their emotions, someone with an actual life.

I hate feeling like this. I hate being so scared — and if you ask me what exactly I’m scared of, I can honestly tell you that I have no idea. But I could also list off a million little things, things that you’ll wave your hand at and say well that’s no big deal. 

Lately, I’m having trouble sleeping. I’m having trouble waking. I’m having trouble existing, because there’s this tightness in my chest that refuses to leave.

I wish I knew how to fix it, that I had some magical cure, but sometimes I feel like it’s unfixable. Like I’m going to feel this way forever.

I just have to hold onto the hope that I’m wrong. Thought Catalog Logo Mark 

Holly is the author of Severe(d): A Creepy Poetry Collection.

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