Thank You, Anxiety

Brenda Karimi
4 min readNov 30, 2020
Photo by Dave Ruck on Unsplash

There are articles that show you how to deal with anxiety and other mental illnesses. These will range from advice on how to ground yourself to simple activities such as a cup of chamomile or lavender tea to help you feel calmer. Well, this is not one of them. This is the article you read when you want to feel like you’re not alone in your struggle. That someone is going through the same thing you are and it’s ok. These are some of my favorite quotes that anyone going through anxiety can relate to. For anyone not going through it, maybe this will help you understand what goes on in the anxiety-ridden minds of your family members and close friends.

  1. I need you to love me a little bit harder today.

There are days when you just wake up and it feels like the worst day of your life. Nothing has happened yet, but the thought of going through the day scares you shitless. Those are the days when you need the people close to you more. Those are days you hope that they won’t look at you like you’re a burden, but they will understand that today is one of those days they need to love you harder and be there for you.

2. I overanalyze things because I am nervous about what could happen if I am not prepared.

You worry a lot. You’re an overthinker. Your head is always a buzzing station of trains narrowly missing each other on the track lines, while the passengers scream out in fear. You’re always thinking of a new plan for everything, and a contingency plan for the first plan. Your mind never rests. You need to be prepared for anything. But then you realize that there are things you can’t be prepared for, which only makes you more frenzied to find a plan that covers all conceivable loopholes. It’s exhausting.

3. Anxiety isn’t about being nervous or shy. It’s your body existing in a physiological and mental state of emergency in the absence of danger.

You’re in a state of perpetual panic. Leaving your house is a chore. You’d rather be stuck in the little corner of the world where you feel in control. Being in public is like a fatal situation in your mind. You like people, but they just freak you out. Sometimes you even wonder if you were meant to be human since fellow human beings scare you so much. You sweat and your heart palpitates and the only thing that can placate you is going back home. You wonder how you’ll ever survive this world if something as simple as a casual social interaction screams danger in bold red letters.

4. I don’t think people understand how stressful it is to explain what’s going on in your head when you don’t even understand it yourself.

You’re crying. You don’t know why you’re crying. The people close to you want to know why you’re crying so that they can fix it, or they can fix you. It’s like a burden of responsibility weighing down on their shoulders. And it’s paramount that they get to the bottom of it because your tears are weighing down on everyone’s mood. You start to feel like a burden. But you don’t know what to tell them. “I don’t know why I’m crying” is really not a good enough answer. The stress weighs down on you, and there are days you feel like everyone would be so much better without you in their lives.

5. Sorry I wasn’t in the mood to be a person today; sorry I forgot to keep a conversation, sorry my soul needs ironing. Give me a moment, a day or a so. It’ll be good. I’ll brush my hair and change my clothes. I’ll laugh a lot. I’ll say important things. It’ll be good.

You want to contribute to the conversation but it is physically impossible for you. Speaking up means everyone’s attention will be on you and that’s when the sweating starts. So you just smile politely and listen, which is the one thing you’re good at. You pray that nobody will take it personally and you spend the next few days antagonizing over that single day when your mind rendered you numb. You will remember that day for months to come.

And sometimes you just have a conversation with anxiety that goes something like this:

anxiety: Aren’t you like…worried?

me: About what?

anxiety: I don't know.

me: Oh my… You’re right!

There are good days, however, and those are the days you hold on to the most. Those are the days that keep you going when everything around you seems to be crumbling. Those are the days you want to have forever.

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Brenda Karimi

Hi! I tell stories of my life, from the good and the bad, and everything in between. 😊