Danny reading your post I don't think you are a hopeless case, I think you are putting the pieces of the jigsaw together very well. The thing is it is a jigsaw puzzle and the pieces of the puzzle do not come to us all at once, not in my experience anyway - in my experience I've found that it doesn't work that way.
I too believe that I suffered from anxiety because my framework did not develop correctly during my formative years, I too believe that wellness is a balance, wellness is an equilibrium and that wellness depends on thinking clearly, rationally and things making sense, etc. but I have found that all those things need to really make sense at the deepest level of our beings if we ar to truly feel WELLNESS again.
I have found (not as much found as rediscovered something that was always there) that we are made up of 3 aspects Body, Mind and Spirit (or soul if you prefer) and to get well and happy again ALL 3 of those aspects have to be put into balance.
Now what I believe was lacking in my life was a connection to my soul, my spirit and when I discovered that and worked on that the final pieces of the jigsaw seemed to fall into place. Now it's not a quick process, it doesn't happen over night, it is something you build upon instead and just as you turn a weak body in a strong body or a weak mind in to a strong mind then so it works with the Spirit, but believe me once you work on turning ALL 3 aspects of the human existence from the weaker to stronger (nourished and well looked after - not body-building, or getting a Phd, etc.) then you will begin to find happiness and meaning to your life again.
Neglect is probably the word, whenever we neglect anything then it is bound to weaken. Neglect the body it will weaken, neglect the mind it will weaken, neglect the Spirit and it will weaken. It seems so obvious when I write it out like that, but believe me I didn't know that before and paid the price.
Many people on here and in life in general talk about the body and many people talk about the mind, but you won't find many discussing the Soul, the Spirit, and if you look you'll find that the spirit is being neglected - and for me finding that (again), nurturing that again, RE-DISCOVERING that again is the key to FULL happiness and well-being.
So work on ALL 3 aspects of your being and see what you find.
I won't discuss it further, as I don't want to lecture you, there are a myriad ways to connecting with your soul, nourishing your soul and your way will very likely differ from mine - so I am going to leave it as me merely pointing you in that direction. If this makes sense to you, if this speaks to you then you WILL take up the baton and start this journey of re-discovering your Soul, your spirit, regardless of what more I say on it. If doesn't then there's no point me saying anymore.