Sometimes, I cannot conjure up the energy to get dressed and take a shower. Sometimes, I will sit in my towel for hours to avoid leaving the house. Sometimes, I will have trouble eating because my stomach is hurting from all of the stress. Sometimes, I will not even have the energy to do the things I love to do because moving feels like a massive mountain to climb.
I cannot send certain texts or emails without triple checking what I have written. I worry about coming across too clingy with crushes or too unprofessional at work or too much with anyone at any time. In person, I do not have enough time to overthink what I am going to say, but when I am sitting on my bed with a phone in my hand I have all the time in the world to worry.
I cannot make a phone call without writing a script for myself beforehand so I have an idea of what to say. It doesn’t matter if I’m calling to make an appointment for my doctor or ordering pizza because either way I will find a way to make the person on the other end of the phone feel awkward. I will ask a stupid question. I will pause for a little too long. I will lose control of my nerves and feel my voice start to tremble.
I cannot answer the door when I am not expecting someone. If the bell chimes at random, it is going to send my heartbeat into overdrive. If no one else is home to save me from the visitor, then I will wait inside of the bathroom until they go away. I will not even think about answering the door and seeing who is standing on the other side. My first instinct will be to run, to hide, to save myself from socializing.
I cannot walk up to a cashier without sounding awkward. I will fumble with my change. I will swipe my card the wrong way. I will make a stupid joke or a comment that doesn’t receive a smile. I will look (and feel) like a complete idiot and will never want to step foot in that store again. I will order most of the things I need online because it saves me from the embarrassment of meeting people face-to-face.
I cannot return a meal at a restaurant. I cannot remind them to apply my coupon after they have already printed the check. I can barely afford the courage to ask for ketchup when the table is empty of condiments. I have trouble using my voice, even when it will not cause any confrontation. Even when I am asking for something completely justified. Something that I deserve to have.
I cannot talk to cashiers. I cannot talk to waiters. I cannot talk to workers. My anxiety turns the easiest, everyday tasks into complete nightmares. It makes it difficult for me to get through the most basic chores. It makes it hard for me to get anything productive done.