Lately, I’ve been reading up on books where the author would talk about dealing with anxiety and depression. Maybe I’m just over empathizing but I feel like I can relate to their stories of anxiety about a 100%, which is not all around good news for me. Let me also preface this entire post by saying that I come from a culture that does not necessarily acknowledge anxiety as a disorder or as an illness. Growing up, I just didn’t hear about it as much so I wondered if we really take anxiety seriously. Also, I am not at all an expert in any of this. Sure I have a science degree but I am in no way shape or form the best source of ways to deal with your anxiety. Seek a professional’s help. And no I don’t mean Wikipedia MD.
I am always anxious. I don’t know where I get it from because I have seemingly chill parents. I also get anxious about the small stuff. I’m constantly anxious about being late. I’m always anxious I don’t have enough cash to pay for whatever it is I’m purchasing. I’m always worrying about farting in public places. I get nervous at the prospect of removing my shoes because people would know how hideous my feet look and also they smell bad about 75% of the time. Add to that all the other stuff a lady in her late twenties worries about and you get a fun disaster.
I know what you’re going to say, this all seems to fall in the spectrum of normal. I thought so too. But the more I really think about it and the more I get to analyze myself do I realize that I have real anxiety issues. I also think it’s the reason why I have soooo many stomach problems. I am always nervous. A lot. Friends who have known me a long time would tell you otherwise but it’s only because I’m really really good at hiding it, which is the only real talent I can account for. I usually mask my nervousness by trying to be funny. I’m always anxious about making a fool of myself in social gatherings so instead of just waiting for the embarrassment to happen, I create the scene of embarrassment. Having a hard time understanding? Let me give you an example.
I am the worst in a bar and/or in a club. I don’t function well in flashing lights and DJ music. But for some reason, my college friends bullied me into celebrating my 22nd birthday in a bar. First of all, I didn’t know what to wear – which is a problem that I still deal with to this day. One of the many reasons why I like staying at home is because I want to be spared of the pressure of wearing something “nice” and “appropriate”. My closet is filled with old t-shirts I’ve outgrown and most likely will never wear again so I don’t have anything to wear in a bar setting or anywhere that requires to be outside. Turns out, most bars will allow you entry even if you’re only wearing short shorts, a skimpy top and flip flops (I was rocking a pair of leggings. It was my birthday after all). I didn’t want my birthday spoiled by acting like a total brat and complain about how loud the music is and declaiming how I would be rather be dead than dance to Black Eyed Peas in public. I figured, the only way I can make most of this birthday (the price of the drinks are ridiculous, even for a bar that allows flip flops wearing) is by getting out of my comfort zone. So after 4-5 shots later, I was up in the stage dancing and looking like a total idiot. I had a lot of fun because every awkward thing that happened that night was in my control. No one dragged me onstage and dared me break dance, I did it all on my own. And no, I was not very good at it. But I was funny and by the end of the night, I was drunk of a very good amount and made new friends. Also there were no video evidence that can implicate me. Over all it was a fun and exhausting birthday. But also something I would never do again.
The more I sit and really think hard about my issues, the more I realize how many things I get anxious over. I’m sure a lot of you out there can relate. I am on the Internet for about 75% (or more) of my everyday, I know what’s up. So I wonder how some of you deal with your anxiety. Do you pretend and make a fool of yourself like I do? Or stay in your sweatpants and live vicariously through YouTubers like I do? Or binge watch old Buffy The Vampire Slayer episodes to make you forget about your existensial crisis like I do? So far my cure works. And until I can afford an actual therapist this is it for now.