As I’ve already mentioned in the title, this is my first time blogging. I have never shared my experiences in a format quite like this, so this should interesting. I feel as if I have so many stories to share and so much to say, but nobody has time to read all of that in one sitting. So… I’ll try not to ramble on for too long. Part of me hopes lots of people read this and part of me hopes nobody does. It can be really difficult putting yourself out there, but hey too late now.
I suppose I will start off by saying that I have struggled with depression and anxiety for as long as I can remember and I still continue to struggle. To a degree it feels like a part of who I am, and I am not quite sure how to feel about that. I could talk about my struggles with anxiety and depression all day, but I think I will focus a little more on my anxiety today since that is my main issue. My depression is touch and go, but my anxiety is here to stay. It is the only constant in my life. I’ve always worried constantly about the smallest and sometimes even the most outlandish things. When I was little I was constantly paranoid, I was afraid to be in the dark and afraid to be alone in the house. I was so afraid and my thoughts were so rapid and scattered that I often times got no sleep and would remain paralyzed in my bed. I would not move or make a sound for fear of something lurking in the dark noticing me. I know that it was foolish, and lots of children think that there are monsters under their bed, however thing continued into my teens.
Anytime I was left home alone, I would stay perfectly still and sit against the wall so I could see every angle of house. This way when someone or something would pop out at me, I could see them and run away. I never told my parents I was afraid to be home alone, because I was embarrassed. Like any teenage girl, I wanted to prove I was brave and mature enough to be home alone and take care of myself. This continued for many years, and I had constant nightmares. I would wake up in the middle of the night, if I was lucky enough to go to sleep, screaming or panting because of a crazy dream I had. Then I would be too afraid to go back to sleep, but also too embarrassed due to my age to tell anyone or ask someone to stay up with me . I felt like I had no one to turn to because I did not know anyone my age who had these problems. I just didn’t feel like I was normal and I tried to hide it. In retrospect I should have told my parents, so I could maybe get some help, but who really told their parents everything at that age?
Now I am 22 and I no longer have nightmares. I am not even sure why that is. I would like to say that I have won the battle with my anxiety or maybe sought treatment and it solved everything, but truth is, I think I just genuinely did mature. I am older now and have lived on my own away from my family, and I think maybe that was the push I needed. It forced me to face my fears, and I think I am better for it.
Now, I’d be lying if I said I am never afraid to be home alone now. Every once in a while, I am home alone and I think I hear someone in the house and I look through the house with a weapon on hang just to be sure. Yes… I know maybe I am a little dramatic, but if it I ever do run into a break-in situation, you better believe I am prepared. In my experience there is a good and a bad side to anxiety. On one hand I feel as if I am constantly being crazy and worrying too much, but on the other there isn’t a single horrible scenario that I haven’t already played out in my head. I suppose that should make me more prepared for life so, I guess we’ll see.
I hope this helps anyone out there who can maybe relate to this situation. If I make even one person out there feel like less of a freak, then this post accomplished something!
Have you ever experienced nightmares? Have you ever wanted to share what you’ve been going through but didn’t? Share your experiences below!