I woke up today with a pit in my stomach. A dreaded feeling for me and with more than a little homework to do I set about trying to accomplish something. I sat down with my laptop and that pit in my stomach grew, and became anxiety and I cried a bit. So I decided to write something down. I wrote everything I've been thinking since yesterday about what is bothering me and tried to sort out my head a bit. Once I'd finished I felt the need to share what I'd written. I thought it would be nice to share with someone impartial to my life. So I looked up a forum and came here.
Before I post my long rant here are a few extra things about me:
1. I'm a student taking art and design along with creative writing.
2. I live alone with my cat.
3. I'm nearing 30 years old
4. I'm taking prozac and vitamin D
5. I've always been prone to anxiety and my mother and siblings are the same.
6. I work in live theatre part-time while going to school
7. I get stressed about homework and I procrastinate. (I know, I know. That makes it worse!!)
Anyway, Here is what I wrote today. (and even writing this post is making me feel a bit better, so thanks to you all in advance!
) I live on the second floor of a house. There is another tenant living on the main floor who is normally very quiet. Yesterday there was more noise downstairs than I've heard before, there was also items being moved out of the house and I found that the fake plant in the common entry way had been moved onto my stairway. There is also a new snow shovel sitting in the entry.
I became intensely sensitive to noise living in my lat apartment where I experienced hostility and indifference from the man who lived above me. My immediate response to this new noise was to become worried that it is a permanent change, that I will have to make confrontations, changes or that I will be forced to live with it. One of the biggest problems is that I begin to anticipate the noise, I try to determine the cause, the location and the possible duration of the noise. When I become focused on this kind of thing I cannot focus on anything else and a feeling of anxiety becomes overwhelming. As I write this I'm feeling nauseous, shaky and tense, but there is no noise at all. This exact time last year I became a quivering mass of uselessness and needed constant support from my family and friends to continue with regular life. I went to my doctor to get help with medication and I started seeing a cognitive therapist. Several weeks later I felt like I had control again, and slowly things became normal. I moved into my current home and shortly thereafter adopted my first cat, Barton. He is a constant pleasure and source of happiness.
My guess about what was going ton yesterday was the tenant downstairs was selling some extra belongings and a friend of hers was helping her out. Then some other friend also came over and they enjoyed some beers (I could smell it) which added to the volume of their conversations. Then b/c last night was the gold medal game for the sochi olympics in men's hockey and Canada was playing they went out to watch the game at a bar. It seems very likely that this was a one-time thing, or at least a uncommon occurrence. My over active imagination, however, turns it into the end of my sanity and productivity, the beginning of a new series of panic attacks and general unwellness. B/c what if these are new tenants moving in? What if they are noisy like this all the time? I will have to call the landlord and start a new feud? I'll have to move again? I'l have to go to therapy again? I will not be able to finish my homework? I will have to face my classmates and instructors as a failure and I will get bad grades and I will never finish university.
This all sounds like perfectly simple problems that should easily be dealt with. I'm a failure at being a normal human being. I fail at being able to ignore sounds coming from my neighbours. I allow my worry to overcome me and I'm afraid to admit to other people that I'm scared and don't know how to cope with this because I feel guilty and weak for not being “normal.” I know that my friends and family want to help me, but I don't want to burden them or to let them think that I'm failing AGAIN.
I have a lot of things to do. I don't want to feel like this. I never felt like this when I wasn't going to school. That's not true. I had several instances of anxiety with roommates, and fights with friends. I was scared and sick then too. There is no simple solution to this problem for me. I have anxiety, I have shitty shitty shitty fears.
I struggle to find comfort in the fact that I've overcome this sort of thing before. Every time it feels like a fresh hell that has no ending. I succumb to this feeling of fear and everything stops being rewarding or comforting. Things that I look forward to are turned into a source of regret as I cannot enjoy them like I should and I feel like a failure for that as well. Happy memories and associations become melancholic and I can't shake the feeling of pressure.
I feel the need to finish this page with some upbeat “I can do it!” statement, but I don't feel that strong right now. I feel like that would make this all true and I would be admitting that there is a problem. I still somehow hope that this isn't a problem at all. That I will not hear any more noise for a long time and that I can go back to feeling like I did on Friday. That I had new clothes, groceries, my home was clean and organized and I was happy.
This art project is causing too much stress. I need to make something and let it be finished.