Hi, today I write to you about a battle. It’s one of the greatest battles of all time, wait, you’ve never heard of it? That’s because nobody wants to talk about it. Wait, who’s the battle about you ask? It’s about one boy and his mind against a legion of thousands of warriors hellbent on seeing him fall. Your last question, what are them warriors called? Them warriors are called his thoughts.
Yes, his thoughts, my thoughts, your thoughts. Anxiety effects us all in different ways. Some get stage fright, okay scary at the time but after the ordeal you’re okay. Others get life fright, a situation much worse. This is where my story comes in.
Now I don’t want sympathy, I never ever have. Anxiety was and still is part and parcel of my life, probably always will be. I’m writing to help others.
I was a 15 year old boy in 4th year, the life of a party, the joker and a very outgoing guy. But that began to change. Slowly, ever so surely, thoughts began to enter my head. Uninvited, unwanted, unneeded. “You’re not funny”, “You’re worthless”, “They don’t give a fuck”. This propelled me into a dark time, but I was too young to realise. I chalked countless nights of coming home too drunk to stand as,”being young” I categorised pretending to be drunk as okay, I even accepted loneliness as not having a girlfriend. And that was all okay, because it went away. For a while.
Fast forward to the summer of 5th year, I met a girl. We fell in love and all was well. The demon hadn’t came back yet, he lurked in the shadows but didn’t threaten to step into the light. I prayed he wouldn’t, but he called my bluff. Two months into 6th year he struck, darker and deeper then ever. My life spun, and spun, and never really stopped. Thoughts took over my life. Feelings of unrest made me sit up late at night wondering whether i’d ever sleep again. I sat in on holidays, not wanting to speak with the outside world. I became engrossed in a battle with my phone, how many Youtube personalities could I befriend as opposed to stepping into the open. Fear became a friend, but not a welcome one. Hope became a old acquaintance, one you’d walk by in the street and only say hi to. But he barely even allowed me that privilege. Alas, I persevered, the year finished out and I went on to new beginnings.
The demon didn’t go away right away, and he wouldn’t of had I not implemented life changes. I began to step out more, socialise, talk and let my feelings be known. The thing that helped me most was being diagnosed. For someone to tell me i’m not a freak, for me the title meant most out of anything. Exercise helped, gym going, putting your mind elsewhere. Hobbies. All these may sound like normal things but when your in the mindset of anxiety the only thing on your mind is fight or flight, not day or night nor flying a kite. Life began to become a beautiful thing when I made the life changes, when I started to see anxiety as a gift instead of some coal under the Christmas tree. Think about it, anxiety makes you attentive to detail beyond your wildest dreams. In a world like journalism attention is vital, advantage me.
To everyone suffering out there, hang on. Surround yourself with positive people, if 4 of your friends are millionaires, you’ll be the 5th. Exercise, talk about your problems. Most importantly, accept yourself for who you are.
You’re fellow sufferer x