What a year it’s been!
I feel like I’ve been fighting one thing after another recently, and the last 3 months have basically destroyed any character I’d built up when it came to fighting anxiety.
I’ve faced fertility issues, hospital visits, job insecurity, money problems, dietary issues and as a result, my anxiety is all over the place, I feel like I’m on a scene from Takeshi’s Castle (Remember that? The weird dragon things? Very odd).
I thought I was doing alright. In fact, I am doing alright. I’ve been working really hard to challenge all of my new anxiety symptoms, to keep pushing myself into various situations where I fear would struggle and often do because I don’t believe withdrawing would benefit me in any way. My biggest fear is going backwards, so in order to avoid that I have to push forwards.
When the struggles show the most, it’s on nights like tonight, when ridiculous thoughts run through your head that are completely irrational and your brain offers no logical alternative. Instead, we create a story in our mind that becomes so vivid, it might as well be true.
After a really tough and quite stressful day at work, I came home to notice the bins had moved. The only reason the bins have been moved is to get down the side of the house and round the back. Neither myself, nor my girlfriend have moved them, so rather than think of some other reason why i.e. the neighbour, a postman, someone seeing if we’re in etc my brain automatically falls to someone scoping the house out to see how they can break in. No alternative in my mind makes any sense except that.
As a result, I’ve had to clear the garage out completely (which to be fair I’ve been putting off for ages so every cloud…) so I can put my car in and lock it away. I’ve blocked the side of the house up with anything noisy I can find, along with trees etc so should a burglar try to get down the side of my house, they’re either going to make a loud noise or break their neck (with any luck). I’ve then moved my girlfriend’s car onto the drive and basically blocked the garage door from even opening. The back door is also blocked with everything from an old door to a lawn mower to an exercise ball.
Even reading that back, it seems so ridiculous and laughable, but at the time I was doing it, it felt like the perfectly normal thing to do and something I needed to do in order to put myself at ease. Was I wrong to do it? Should I have ignored my thoughts and just let it pass? I’m not sure. Should I have spent a ridiculous amount of money on security things for the house? Probably not.
However, at the time I was struggling. I felt broken, I felt tense, I felt ill, I felt desperate. At that moment in time, it helped. It hasn’t hurt anyone, it doesn’t affect anyone and if anything my garage is now tidy.
I guess what I’m saying is, anxiety is a funny old game. One day you’re on top of it, the next day it’s stood behind you with a sinister grin and a rubber glove on it’s hand. You can’t predict it, you can’t change it so the best way to deal with it is any way you know how. If you’re hurting no one, sometimes we have to just give in and go with it. At least tonight I’ll sleep easily.
If I find a burglar unconscious on my garden tomorrow from all the booby traps, I’ll shit.