I would LOVE to write an entire blog post about how amazing life has been lately. I want to brag about how far I have come, what I have accomplished, and how happy I have felt. Unfortunately all of the good that has happened in the past few weeks has been drowned out by some shitty days. Shitty feelings. Panic attacks.  Feelings of discourage and defeat. You may be thinking to yourself "Oh imagine that, another bad week" or "Does she ever have good days" or "When DOESN'T she feel like that". I'll be honest, those phrases have crossed my mind as well a time or two. What I will tell you is that this is the nature of the beast. I have learned that when things are going well I am so caught up in the moment and able to be fully present that I don't really have thoughts past "Wow, life is good!" As in, I don't have all of these things and ideas ruminating in my brain to write about. I wish it didn't work that way; it's something I am working on in therapy.

The past three weeks have been a constant rollercoaster of ups and downs. I have had some really great days and I have had some pretty terrible days. I have started out having a bad day and it has ended pretty great. I have started out my day on top of the world and feeling like the most unproductive human in the world by the end of it. Part of those latter feelings come from me setting so many rules and expectations for myself, most of which are ridiculous. I've probably had more hard days than good days. I'm really trying to label my days differently, because as long as I am alive and well no days are bad days, right? Most of my hard days have felt the same. A lot of anxiety and worry thoughts. I have also been realizing lately that I am so fucking tired all of the time that I don't even know what it feels like to not be tired. I am either tired, or exhausted. Very rarely have I felt very "rested" as of late. I am either mentally tired from fighting worthless wars inside of my head all day, or stressed out from work, or exhausted from trying to do everything and please everyone. And then there's the combination of all three. I have had a few moments of being able to really do some productive thinking and I also brought to my own attention how rare it is that someone reaches out to me. I told myself a month or so ago that I was done initiating contact with several people in my life. Why do I always have to be the one to start a conversation or make a phone call? Why is up to me to reach out to my friends? Why is it on me to check in? At this point if someone in my life doesn't know that I have G.A.D then it's not my fault. They've chosen to not know. I've talked a lot of what some of the anxious thoughts I continually have and those include feeling forgotten, left out, like nobody cares, like I don't matter, like there is something wrong with me, like I am a burden, like I'm unlovable. Those feelings have increased ten fold over the summer. I  really wanted to preface all of this with "I know everyone is busy" but I'm not doing it.  Saying "I've just been too busy!"  is such a bullshit excuse to use. I know everyone has their friends they talk with constantly, and if not constantly then regularly. This isn't happening in person, so don't tell me picking up the phone to send a text or make a phone call is beyond your scope of availability. I don't believe you. I believe that many people have this idea in their head that if they do check in or exert the effort to reach out they're just going to have to listen to how terrible my life is or that I'll be angry and explosive. That pisses me off, it's one of the things that pisses me off the most actually. It's also interesting to me that people have that perception of me. I have never gotten angry at someone when they have asked me how I am doing or what is new in my life. I also don't believe my life is terrible so why would that be the first thing you assume I will do? I know I have a lot of good in my life, but what people don't seem to ever grasp is that NONE of that matters at all when I am having a panic attack, or too much anxiety to do anything except get through the next moment. Pointing that out to me isn't helpful in the least. What is helpful is asking me how I am doing, and continuing that conversation no matter if my answer is "Good! Great! Grand!" or "not the best".  If you're going to ask me how I am and then not even have the intention of carrying on the conversation past "how are you?" then don't even waste your 10 seconds it took you to text me. I know not everyone always has something to talk about, but the purpose of starting a conversation is to talk about SOMETHING, right? Unless it's in passing or in a customer service setting you don't just say hi and not follow up with anything else.

I like to think that I am a pretty good friend and person in general. I know I'm not perfect. I have a lot of hard days, I have good days, I have days where I don't even know what the hell is happening inside of my head. I don't ever forget about my friends. I make a habit out of attempting to catch up with my friends regularly. I don't have the energy to do it anymore. I feel like it's reasonable for me to be tired playing the role of the initiator in everything. Reading my blog is also not the best way to keep up with me. This is merely a snapshot of my life and my days. It's therapeutic for me to write and get things out of my head and off of my chest, so it's more for my own personal purposes than it is anyone else.

One other thing that has really been bothering me is when people tell me they know how I feel. You don't know how I feel, and I don't know how you feel. You might have anxiety and/or depression but it's not the same for everyone. Assuming that you know how I feel and therefore believing I am overreacting or making non-issues into issues, is rude. I don't need you to KNOW how I feel. I need you to just accept what I feel and be with me. Don't try to change my mind, don't tell me to snap out of it stop worrying. I'm not asking you to act as my therapist, but when did listening with an open ear become such a hard thing for folks to do?

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