Throughout my childhood I would periodically have these intense episodes of overwhelming anxiety with no apparent cause. It's been ages, but I had one last night. All the crazy bunched up in this tiny space just behind my left ear lobe, and it felt like my soul was going to vomit.
When this feeling comes over me, I want to lay in bed in the dark and stare at the ceiling. But then I feel out of place and I want to eat a pint of Ben and Jerry's Oatmeal Cookie Chunk and drink a Sam Smith Oatmeal Stout. But then I am acutely aware that I am self-medicating and I put on a movie and try to tune out the low level jangling in my lungs.
I can't be around people in that state, mostly because any reasonable person asks if everything is alright and what's going on and is there a reason. I can't talk about this thing very well. It makes me feel like a psycho, and how do you say to someone, "It's cool, I just feel like yelling at the top of my lungs and banging pots together and setting my journals on fire. Don't you ever feel that way?" More frightening is if I somehow aim my anxiety at them and lash out. People avoidance is the name of the game when these moments hit.
Thank goodness for text messaging and email. In the past when I had access to neither I would just hole up in my room and read fantasy books or play video games, sensing that with each page turned or level beaten that I was drifting further away from the relational moorings that make me human. At least now I can communicate with people (in an admittedly one-sided fashion) without having to interact with them that moment. It helps me to feel like I'm still connected, still held together somehow. And now I'm blogging about it to keep that feeling going, I guess.
Ok. Time to start the day.