Stories from a life in progress.


It's hard to write from inside the cage of anxiety.  I'd rather hide under the covers and not come out until everything is better.  But hiding under the covers doesn't make anything better.

It's hard to want to be on display when I'm gripped by unreasoning fear.  I want to wait until I have something clever to say, something triumphant, something pretty and polished, something that will make people like me and like my writing and come back and tell me how good I am at it and want more.  I don't think I have any such words today.

It's hard to take care of myself, when everything is tense and strange and I don't know how my body will react to things.  Right now I'm in a terrible cycle, where eating makes me anxious -- but not eating makes me feel terrible (of course, humans need food).  I'm never sure how I will feel when I put something in my mouth, if my stomach will roil or my whole body will shiver or if I'll just be fine, more or less normal.  I'm hungry but I have no appetite.  I'm obsessed with food but in a bad way -- a scared, non-creative way, that just locks me inside the fear and makes me feel worse.

How does a grown-up human being get to this point?  Being scared of food?

I don't feel like doing work, but lack of distraction just makes me more anxious.  I don't have anything pressing to do, anything that would force me to pay attention to something else for a while.  I'm trying to make some things up, but there's always this underneath sense that I'm just doing make-work and it doesn't really matter.

It's a strange life right now.  I don't know how obvious it is that I'm struggling, to anyone outside my family and closest friends.  If I go to the grocery store or the bank or the post office, would anyone know how sick I feel, how tired I am, demoralized and scared?  Do I cover it well enough?  I wonder how many people I walk past are doing a fair job of hiding similar things?

I wonder what I could snack on next?  I just finished some grapes and they didn't make me feel weird, but what will the next thing make me feel like?

How long do I have to deal with this?  Is there an end coming soon?  I can't see it from here, but I hope it's just over a rise, just down the road.  The worst thing is suffering with no apparent reason and no definite end.  Just a squiggly gray worry-fog, with no promise of change and no sign pointing the way out.  My eyes have been fog-blinded for a long time now, and it's hard not to despair -- to wonder if I will ever see clear again.