OverComing Anxiety

I have had a tough few days since I was here last. I’ve been extremely overwhelmed by the changes that are happening in my life right now. I am so consumed with worry, anxiety and fear of what’s to come. As some of you already know, I am getting ready to step into my legislative aide role, and the Spring semester is about to commence. There has been so much I have had to do to prepare for both, the stress of college tuition, of wondering if I will be successful in my new role or will I fall flat on my face. To top it all off, there are other personal issues that I have been battling with too. The anxiety is real. This is supposed to be the happiest time of my life but I find myself down in the dumps, fearing change and failure.  

When I get into this mode, I tend to shut myself off completely. Fearing that the people around me will see what I see in myself, the hopelessness that consumes me. I am afraid they will see the regret, the mistakes I’ve made, the defeat I feel. The defeat that drags me back down when I feel like I’ve made progress and headway towards my life goals. There is a loud voice in my head that won’t let me be great, it reminds me of every single thing that I have ever gotten wrong, every loss I’ve encountered and all the reasons why I am not good enough. This drags me to the very bottom, to the point that I lose belief in myself and my dreams.  

When I woke up this morning, I knew I couldn’t let this vicious cycle and rollercoaster of emotions continue. It affects my relationships with friends and family because during this period, I disconnect from everyone I love and retreat into this cocoon of hopelessness and despair. I said this is enough, I am a child of God and Jesus did not die on the cross for me to allow the devil a permanent place in my mind. Give him such power as to dictate my every emotion, even at a time of celebration, he subtly whispers words of self-doubt in my ears, stealing my joy. No more.  

I switched things up a little bit during my morning routine and dedicated the full hour to conversation with God and affirmation of who I am, my achievements, intentions and goals. I am no longer defined by the wreckage that I hold against myself, or rather that he has as leverage over my life. In the famous Jay Z’s Voice ” A loss ain’t a loss, it’s a lesson…” Yep, that’s exactly what the losses and mistakes of my past are, it’s time to stop referring to the past to look for direction for the future. Truth is, ain’t nothing there but crap left behind that no longer fits my narrative. I have outgrown that space. 

For the first time in a while, today I was present in my life. I put my phone down and had a conversation with my niece, hugged my little sister and actually felt it, and let go of all the tiny specs of worry I had over minute details of the pending changes. I took time to really process the fact that I am where I am now, off blood, sweat and tears with no hand-outs or connections. Just sheer grit and determination, realizing that all my goals are well within reach right now. I was proud of myself for not throwing in the towel, even when life gave me endless reasons to do so.  

I stopped to thank God for my family today, we are all happy and healthy, in a great place and I chuckled at my mother’s lousy attempt at chastising us (All 5 of us) yesterday before she turned back into the cuddy bunny that she is, she is the sweetest person I know. Then smiled at her excitement for all my progress regardless of how tiny it is, her willingness to go without in order to make sure that her children have all they need. She is the real MVP. I am truly blessed and I do not take that or her for granted at all. 

This kind of healing is not about forgetting the things that have happened to me, or ignoring the grief and pain that has and will come my way. Life will never be fair, it will always be filled with ups and downs, but we gain nothing from trying to figure out why those things happened to us. Healing is about looking at those experiences and saying that they will not define and defeat us but instead, make us stronger and wiser. I reminded myself of all the silent prayers that have been answered and laughed at the mediocrity of my fears. None of them could equal my accomplishments. My life is an exact replica of the David and Goliath story. I am armed only with faith, hope and love. 

 

My entire life is a series of small and big miracles and faith. As cliché as this may sound, some days I really have no idea how I will do it but it still always gets done. If you need proof of God’s love and mercy, I am a living testimony of it. I am very glad to have taken some time to center myself today and realize that the stealer of joy was trying to have me downplay this period of restoration and goodness. Trying to make sure I don’t celebrate the end of a period of loss that I endured the last couple of years. To all my loved ones that have fallen victim to these silent and secluded sessions, I sincerely apologize and please don’t hesitate to come and drag me out of it the next time you see me slipping. No one can do it alone, I found strength to do it because of the people in my life that give me so much love and support, they don’t deserve half of me, but all of me. I promise to be more present.  

I will fall, but the strength to rise will always come from the love I am blessed with on a daily basis. Unfortunately, everyone does not have friends and/family or they do but most people have mastered the art of feigning happiness so one know they are suffering in silence. Make an effort to find out how people are REALLY doing, with the intent to listen and be present in the conversation, some people will tell you they are doing well but I urge you to probe a little further. We all need each other at the end of the day, no man is an island.  

My ending word today is faith. It can and has moved mountains, so don’t you dare wallow in self-pity and give up on yourself. When you’re having an unusually hard time and have no one to talk to, you can reach out to me via email or text. I am always available. God always comes through, even when you feel like the sky is falling down, he is working things in your favor, I promise you. Always have hope that defies human understanding, that is the key to grace and peace. I feel very liberated and at peace now. I am hopeful and grateful for this exciting new chapter in my life. I no longer will answer to Fear, worry, anxiety and regret. I will answer only to Love, faith, grace, abundance and wisdom.  

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