This post comes from a place of sadness I guess (what a way to build it up!) and I always feel better getting things down in writing so that’s what I’m doing.
Tonight, I was meant to go to a scare event in Melton Mowbray with my girlfriend and her family. I knew when signing up that this could potentially be too much for me, but thought I’d get involved and stop being such a party pooper. I opted for the chicken ticket (much to the ridicule of everyone else) and that was that.
Cut to today, I was telling someone about it and sent them a link to have a look. They replied with a photo they’d seen, and that’s where my enthusiasm for it completely changed. My plan was to go, enjoy the atmosphere without any of the scare (hence the chicken ticket) but it seems I was quite naive, as in the photos were people walking around the park dressed in outfits like clowns, some dude with a chainsaw and the grim reaper to name but a few. Now, before anxiety this wild have been right up my street, but now it’s totally different. Actually going to an event like this would make me anxious without some sadistic individual chasing me with a chainsaw. It’s just NOT my bag right now.
So, cue the excuses. I text my Girlfriend explaining that it’s probably a bit too much for me and said it’s best she explains I can’t go. We made an excuse up of me having to work (which is half true, I was working earlier) and that was that. However now they’re picking her up, so I’ve got to go out in my car while they pick her up to avoid being seen so the lie seems legit. Now all of this is fine if it means I haven’t got to do something I don’t want to do, but I can’t help but think:
Is this what my life is destined to be like?
I’m not very open about my anxiety, and in fact only 4 or 5 people know about it altogether, so I find that my life is often built on foundations of excuses to help me to live with this mental illness I seem to have at the moment. What makes me sad is the thought of this being my life from now on. I make excuses not to have to give people lifts, I make excuses as to why I don’t do certain things or why I don’t play games where I’m made to look stupid. As things come up in the next few weeks, I’m thinking of ways to get out of it already. ‘I don’t feel well’, ‘I’ve got to work’, ‘I’m not available as I have other commitments’ rather than being honest. ‘I don’t want to do that as it makes me feel uncomfortable’. Why is it so unacceptable to just be completely honest. ‘No I don’t want to play games like that because to makes me feel uncomfortable’. Instead I’m in a position where I feel I’ve got to lie, hide my car and pretend I’m somewhere else rather than in my own home, wearing PJs and having a cup of tea.
Hopefully one day I’ll feel brave enough to stand up and say ‘I have anxiety and doing that won’t be easy for me’. I hope that as a community we can be completely open and clear about what is wrong with us without fear of being stigmatised. I hope one day I won’t care if someone thinks I’m less of a person because I have anxiety. I hope all of this happens, because I can’t bare to spend another 50 years making excuses.