I See You
There's this thing I do, I bite my lips and pick the skin off my feet and one day a friend told me those were symptoms of anxiety.
I had tightness in my chest and felt like I couldn't breathe so I went to the doctor and they didn't help me but they told me it could be anxiety.
I backed out of three job interviews and told myself that the inner voice I was listening to was God. But. Maybe. It was actually anxiety.
I felt sick to my stomach and threw up the whole time I was pregnant and I'm pretty sure it wasn’t all in my head, but do you think it had anything to do with anxiety?
I screamed at my two year old for acting like a two year old and yelled at my husband for listening to me when I asked him to buy me fudge brownies and flew into full body-shaking rage episodes when my baby woke up early from his nap and then I finally thought maybe,
It was time to take a look at this thing called anxiety.
I hyperventilated over taking a pill and asked “how will I know if it's helping” and “what is it supposed to be like” and “what if it's wrong” and “how long before I know” and “is this normal or is this the medication or is it...you know... the anxiety?”
I drove all across the freeways of Las Vegas and remembered panicking on small town Idaho roads and realized how much of my life had been affected by this thing I hadn't even known how to name
we drive together or take walks and have talks or listen to Taylor Swift or play solitaire at 2AM or meditate or stretch or try to just breathe together or ruminate over a thousand questions or watch a comfort show and eat fudge brownies or even sometimes bite my lips and pick the skin on my feet, saying
"Oh, hey anxiety,
I see you".
(Tia Wray has a BA in English and a MA in health psychology. She turned to poetry as a way to process trauma therapy, and her themes have expanded into topics related to healing, grief, connection, and nature. In addition to being a writer, she is a mother and a meditator. She currently lives in Västerås, Sweden.)
The Beautiful Space-