Oh, I'm being eaten
By a boa constrictor,
A boa constrictor,
A boa constrictor,
I'm being eaten by a boa constrictor,
And I don't like it--one bit.
Well, what do you know?
It's nibblin' my toe.
Oh, gee,
It's up to my knee.
Oh my,
It's up to my thigh.
Oh, fiddle,
It's up to my middle.
Oh, heck,
It's up to my neck.
Oh, dread,
It's upmmmmmmmmmmffffffffff . . .

-Shel Silverstein

I was really struggling with adulting yesterday.  My anxiety reared it's head and started nibbling at my toes, my ankles, my knees and almost swallowed me whole.  There is no way to explain to your children, and all the people you interact with when you feel that way that you might be acting weird or off, or touchy (or shout-y...) because you are trying to climb out of the mouth of anxiety.  Breathing helps, a little.  Being by myself helps, listening to music, exercising, all help a little.  But I've found that most of the time trying to make it go away makes it worse.  When I remember, the best way to make the beast leave my toes alone is to accept that it's there.  The best case scenario is for me to say: "I see you, I know you are there and I'm not going to make you leave.  You are a part of me and sometimes you'll be here and sometimes you won't."  For me, anxiety is a very strange coping/avoiding strategy.  When something scares me or stresses me out I will feel anxious about something completely different, often off the wall or illogical.  When I can look anxiety in the eyes and ask, what is the thing I don't want to face or think about that is making this anxiety surround me? That is what helps the most.
I don't write this because I'm some expert on anxiety.  All I know is I have it sometimes, and that is ok.


Meesh said…
Amen. Thanks for sharing, Am. It's really hard to accept Anxiety, but pretending it's not there or trying to fight it off only makes things worse.
Rob said…
I love that poem. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

One thing that helps me with anxiety is to avoid all situations that I don't fully understand and also to avoid taking any risks. This has helped me accumulate a lot of extra energy reserves which should be useful if I'm forced out of my comfort zone. Plus I've had a lot of extra time to prepare myself mentally. I've got all the superhero movies memorized. I know exactly what to say and how to act should the need arise.

My poor couch Stuffy is sagging a bit in the middle but we have an understanding.

Hm. It's risky clicking 'Publish'...

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