Six months ago I knew I was in trouble. Anxiety and stress were pushing me towards an early grave. I started to feel depressed. Dangerously depressed. The light was starting to fade, the darkness was setting in and I embodied fear. I was fearful, pessimistic and on the edge.

But I’ve always been a “doer”. I do. That’s me. I move, I shake, I mold and I get things done. My way. I take control. Movement keeps me healthy. That’s what I’ve always told myself. Never stay still. Don’t stop. Don’t hesitate.

And I’m not just talking about physical movement. I’m talking about emotional movement. Spiritual movement. Intellectual movement. Movement through time, changing my surroundings, myself. Just movement in any form you can find it.

So I did something. I reached out. I found a society on the web – http://www.panicsurvivor.com – and that’s where I met Josh and Cindy (and many others). It helped a lot. For one thing it swept away my loneliness.

I saw endless posts that could have been written by me. They described experiences and feelings I truly knew as my own. I recognized the fear and the anxiety. I recognized the awareness of sure madness that was clouded by doubt. “I know this chest pain is just anxiety related but still… what if it isn’t!”.

Slowly but surely this feeling of community began stripping away my own fears. A wonderful doctor and an incredible family also helped tremendously but the community was key. I also initiated big changes in my life. Then I began writing posts for WeWorry.

And then I disappeared.

Why? Because I suddenly felt different. I think I discovered something I wasn’t really looking for (or looking out for). I’m a doer. I keep moving. I never stop. Until recently.

Without trying I’ve seemed to have learned that it is okay to stop for awhile. To enjoy the present, smile, breathe and reflect on both past and future. It is okay to relax.

This might seem obvious. It might even seem trivial. But to me it was neither. By constantly moving I was able to drown my constantly chattering brain with white noise. I was able to silence the voices of anxiety and worry almost perfectly. The keyword here is ALMOST.

They never stopped. They never gave up. That meant that they were always there when I had nothing to over shout them with. And they were constantly growing louder and louder.

So I finally decided to face them. Some I managed to silence for good, some I learned to control better. Some I even listen to, from time to time. But most of all I realized that movement won’t save me from myself. Movement is still important because I have to keep pushing myself but I also have to face my fears and I have to be able to stop. To enjoy now.

So I suddenly felt different. I felt no need to visit PanicSurvivor or WeWorry. Maybe a part of me was afraid of it. Feeling that if I did my anxiety and worry would come back with a vengeance. Like opening the door out of curiosity only to find out that the monster is still there.

But now I’m back. Mainly to stay focused, tell my stories and move on (keep moving). And, of course, to keep up the fight. Because I know the monster is still there. It’s just sleeping, at the moment. And while it slept I was able to tie it down. I hope the rope will hold.

P.S. One advice. I changed my diet. I’ve lost 18 pounds. It works wonders.

Advertisements