Anxiety has been one of the great plagues of my life. It poisons everything.

Last night I lay in bed thinking about my current struggle with anxiety and how it’s been eating at me to the point where I’m just trying to pass time again. “Get through this moment and the next” has been my focus for too many weeks.

While that strategy got me through some of the hardest times in my life, it’s no way to live in the long run. In fact, it really sucks.

Last night I also took the first steps to getting that sucker back under control. I already feel so much better. So, what did I do? I wrote, of course. I asked myself, “What am I afraid of?” “What was the situation?” “What can I do now?”

I approached the situation as an observer, not as an interested party. As it turns out, my logical side is stronger than my emotional side when I let it flex its muscles. It also turns out that I have the same fear I’ve always had. I’m afraid that the bottom’s going to fall out.

I was once told that children of alcoholics have this problem and that it’s a part of codependency. I don’t know if that was true or not but it seems to be the case for me. The one constant fear I’ve always had is that all good things will fall apart. Unfortunately, sometimes that fear causes things to fall apart.

I have a feeling that fighting this fear will be the defining fight of my life. It’s much stronger than my battle to lose weight, that’s for sure.

Interestingly, when I gave myself permission to ignore that fear for weight loss, I actually started losing weight. Almost a year in, I’m still successful. I’m still losing weight. Things have not fallen apart. In fact, nothing in my life has fallen apart in a very long time.

But doesn’t that mean that my luck will run out soon?

That is the question that the scared little girl in me still asks. That is the question that I battle in every area of my life. That is the cause of the anxiety.

Anxiety is the end of happiness. I’m convinced that this is true.

Confession: Anxiety has even been keeping me from keeping up with my training runs properly. I’m terrified of the long intervals that are coming up ahead. I’m afraid that I can’t do it. I’m also afraid of the pain that comes from learning to push myself. It makes me want to say “fuck it, I’m not doing this.” I’m not giving up, though, and I will push through. It will hurt, it might even suck, but this is one more way that I can prove to myself that I can do things and that failure isn’t inevitable.

You know, I could say that this isn’t fair and that I didn’t choose this fight. I didn’t choose it, but I’m in it and I am determined to beat it.

I know that I’m not alone, we all fight some battle that we certainly didn’t choose. Whether it be physical issue, emotional, or whatever; we all have our fight. I’d really like to hear back from you about your fight and how you’re going about it.

Leave a Comment

queerveganrunner December 2, 2010, 8:40 pm

Exactly. You know exactly what to do. Feelings are not facts and you have to have a "Just the facts m'am" attitude with anxiety. Now, if only I could take my own medicine!

Krysta December 2, 2010, 9:20 pm

I had never heard of the "everything is going to fall apart" feeling being common in children of alcoholics but it makes sense, I have that feeling a lot, in pretty much everything I do, but I've never linked it with my mom.

I'm glad that you were able to look at your anxiety as an outsider and use the facts to beat it. Hopefully I can do the same thing!

Lisa December 2, 2010, 10:20 pm

I've suffered from anxiety my whole life. As an adult I realize now I was mis-diagnosed with depression instead of anxiety. Anxiety is what gives me insomnia. I agonize over every little detail in my life. I get fixated on the horrible things that COULD happen instead of focusing on the fact that they haven't. It's really debilitating.

Jennifer December 3, 2010, 1:42 pm

I must admit that I am generally not an advocate of medicating problems away…but after dealing with depression and anxiety for more than 25 years, I finally went to a therapist and got a prescription for an antidepressant (one that is also geared for people who have anxiety.) What a HUGE DIFFERENCE it has made in my life! Will I be on this forever? I don't know…but for now it's the right thing for me and I'm enjoying my life for the first time in many years.

Maybe it's something you might check into?