My anxiety is tricky. It hides itself well. My armpits drench through my clothing in a matter of minutes, my heart thumps loudly but I know that only I can hear it. The crease above my lip fills with sweat – which is likely the most identifiable symptom to the outside world. My body stiffens and my eyes stare straight ahead.
It’s not intentional; I don’t mean to ignore the people around me, it’s just that my head is making too much noise to pay attention to my surroundings.
I look at my anxiety and I box it up, shoving each of its intrusive corners into a box much smaller than it’s meant to fit. Pushing down the edges and taping them again and again, hoping the excess doesn’t bulge through the cracks. I put the box away, somewhere deep down inside me. It fits nicely at the bottom of my stomach. Then it rumbles.
I’ve pushed it too deep and covered it with too much, so much that it starts to feel alone, disregarded, abandoned, neglected. My anxiety sinks lower and suddenly the box has diminished to a shallow puddle in the pit of my stomach, a shallow puddle who feels sad and broken. A shallow puddle that is depression. Scents swirl from the puddle and drift up through my body, reaching my head before escaping through my mouth and nose and ears. The scents turn to words and whisper that I’ll never be enough. That I will always fail at the things I want most to achieve.
The words that are left turn to tears and escape through my eyes. My body continues to host this sadness until all the words have turned into wept tears and I breathe again. Mascara streams down my foundation covered face and I feel more beautiful than ever before. The words are gone and the cycle has finished.