There’s Constant Screaming Among The Silence In My Head

        Recently I came across an article on Buzzfeed that spoke to everything that makes me what I am and especially how I’ve been feeling the last three years of my life. This article broke down, what some, who battle both depression and anxiety feel on a regular basis. I’ve spoken before that I’ve never been properly diagnosed with depression and/or anxiety but I have never related to something so much in my life. There was a list of 20 things that people who deal with depression and anxiety go through. While I couldn’t relate to all, here are some of the ones that literally had me in tears by the time I’d finished the article.

        Almost three years ago when I moved back home to Ohio from Chicago I shut down. I shut down for almost two years. I was saddened by my sudden huge setback in life while at the same time wanting to move forward, but couldn’t. I knew in order to get back on track that I had to kick my life into overdrive, but had no will to get out of bed let alone try and live life like a fully functioning human being. I kept telling myself that this will be the time that I will try to buckle down and start writing but the thought of starting that process caused me so much anxiety that it would cause me to crash. Everyday was tomorrow. Everyday I’d start poems or stories, only to have them sit in my drafts folder because I put to much pressure on myself. Everything just left me feeling tense and overwhelmed. Simple things like just getting up and getting the day started caused me to become a nervous wreck. I knew at a certain point that in order to get my life back together I’d need to find a job, but some days I’d open up a job application and just stare at it. The thought of filling one out and possibly putting myself into another stressful work situation scared the hell out of me. I’d tell myself I was being silly, but that didn’t make the anxiousness go away.

         When I returned home I was expecting lots of support from people I considered friends. I actually was the one who was game to go out, but unfortunately got too many excuses from too many people and again shut down. I got the feeling that none of these people cared which caused me to wonder why I should. My depression grew bigger as I had no one to confide in. I desperately wanted a friend to reach out so that I had an excuse to move. To live. I only got that from a friend who now lives in another state. I’d make myself get out of bed when she came into town. I had to. I just knew deep down that I had to even though it was a struggle to get out of bed.
        I do feel sort of pathetic that I’ve been single for many years now, but while I’d like to be in a relationship I don’t see why anyone would date me. How would I even be able to function in a relationship when I’ve become so used to being alone? Honestly the thought of someone possibly understanding me and taking on the challenge of me is sort of scary. I once found a man that partly understood me and I didn’t tell him how I felt. Now I compare every man that approaches me to him. I don’t want to start over brand new with someone who will possibly judge me for something that I have no control over, when I had someone in my grasp that made me feel like I could be me. What if I happen to find another person who will understand all that goes through my mind and I end up scaring them away? What a waste that would be.

         For those two years when my life stopped I had no sense of time. I’d sleep until 2pm and be awake until 5am. My mind never stopped. Ideas and thoughts were (are) going nonstop, but I had not a lick of motivation to actually do anything. All I wanted to do was sleep. Sometimes I feel myself slip into that even now. It’s like a never ending exhaustion. Sometimes that exhaustion makes me angry because I know there are lots I’d like to accomplish whether they be big goals or small ones and I feel so helpless and like a failure. I want(ed) to make my future, but it is scary and again, shut down.

        This is my thought process all day everyday. There’s so much I want to do. There’s so much I need to do and there’s this overwhelming feeling of can’t. It feels almost impossible. It’s so crippling. More than anything I want to be back in Chicago or possibly go to New York. I know I want to be in some city rich with art, but when it comes to putting a plan together to make all this happen it’s like my mind blows a gasket and I let myself get overwhelmed. I get stressed out over the smallest details because I want a plan set out ahead of me and I want everything to go according to that plan. When nothing goes as planned that’s when I don’t want to do anything at all because I’m lost on what to do. It’s an exhausting process that barely even gets off the ground.

        I know I become anxious over small things which leads me to think that it’s all in my head. It’s a sort of paranoia. Is what I’m feeling real? Is it really worth being this being anxious about? Should I really be paralyzed by this feeling? I let my mind be weighed down by things that to most people seem like small or no problems at all.
        I lay awake all day and night thinking of how great my life would be and should be, but the thought of never getting there terrifies me. I’m never going to get to that level of comfort in life, so why bother. I really want to think that things for me will get better, but there’s a huge chance that they will not. I stick it out even though most days I really don’t want to. I stick it out because I truly want to believe that there is a purpose for me. That faith often weakens, but I know that I have to try.
        A feeling I cannot explain is feeling nothing and everything at the same time. I often tell people that I feel too much and care too little or vice versa. That is the constant state of anxiousness for me. That state of caring about your future, wanting better for yourself, standing up for those you love, trying to be productive in life, and also saying “fuck it all.” Those two conflicting feelings tug inside of me constantly. In one breath I could be pouring my heart out and throw up my hand at the same time. #20 alone sums up how I feel in my soul. Just reading that one sentence makes me want to break down. The feeling of everything and nothing is like being ripped in two. Again, I shut down as this feeling has left me paralyzed then get back up and go through steps 1-20 again.

-Asia Aneka Anderson

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