“My face used to get hot…
It would warm itself up to a boil
Where I could feel every rise in its temperature,
And slowly melt into a puddle of my tears.
The heat always came to warn me.
And I would cry at the news of the heat’s forecast.
I always knew what was coming next.
Cue the onset of
the fight and the flight in my mind, and the tightness in my chest”
According to the Anxiety and depression Association of America, There are around 40 million adults who are living with anxiety. Out of this number of people, less than half seek treatment or therapy. The Association Also says that people with anxiety go to the doctor five times more than those who don’t have it, and they are six times more likely to be admitted to a psychiatric treatment facility.
As a member in the journey to overcome anxiety and depression; I know so much about how costly and disruptive anxiety and depression are for us when we give its lies our undivided attention. I spent the first five years of my twenties paying thousands of dollars off in hospital debt because of phobias and anxiety that I had concerning my health, and my frame of mind. I’m talking over twenty thousand dollars whipped up over a two year period of wild anxiety scares. And guess what? I was, and still am physically in great health.
I Flashback to these very real and hard life moments, because I remember that I wasn’t doing anything at the time to build up a defense against my negative thinking, my obsessive thinking, my constant fear of an invisible doom. I bring this point up because I realize through interactions with people in my life, and people who cross into my own shared journey, that humans will talk, vent, and share how they feel until their very last breath. But what a lot of anxiety and depression sufferers won’t do, is take action. I’m not talking about surface action. I’m talking about the action that requires you to squeeze your body into places that your anxiety and depression needs to be dislodged from. I’m talking about coughing up the pain in your shoulders and your back and your chest from age old issues.
What is giving up during the mental health journey?
I believe that there are multiple explanations for what giving up is in the mental health realm of things. Giving up is not just suicide, or attempting suicide. Giving up starts when you mold into sedentary life motions that make you sleep your day away. Giving up is suppressing anger. Giving up is emotional eating, even if you aren’t obese. Giving up is not caring about what’s going on in the lives of the people you love. Giving up is addiction, manipulation, financial irresponsibility…
We throw in the towel on ourselves each time we let our anxious and depressed nature scare us to the emergency room. (This illness literally will take your money and your peace of mind.) I know that there are very real deficiencies, and physical trauma to your brain that can cause people to be chemically imbalanced indefinitely. But, the statistics are saying that over half of us with able bodies and anxietal behavior are not doing anything about it.
I’ve been able to sustain a posture of persistence in my own mental health journey by allowing myself to come to focus as the vessel for something beautiful to be put into the earth. I still have really tough days where anxiety test me. But I keep choosing myself over the temptation to be anxiety’s victim. There’s no secret rule. I cope by trying my hardest to do the opposite of what anxiety throws at me.
So, How about we let giving up never be an option? I want to see persons living with these conditions fight back. I think of all of the people who get up, brush their hair, iron their clothes, and get themselves together to go to work when they are sick with a cold, the flu, or a virus. In this action, we tell our employer’s that they can depend on us to show up and do our job. So why not have the same loyalty to your mental health, your mind, and stability?
Anxiety and Depression will troll around in our faces and minds most times, as much as we let them. It doesn’t feel good, I know. There are excruciating circumstances that lead to the life of anxiety and depression, but should we be alive, we must still show up and address it. We can’t allow these issues to live our lives for us. I want to leave this side of life as hollow as possible. I don’t want to leave this side of heaven with treasures that stayed locked up inside of me.
When your anxiety or depression rises, in the down of your spirit, get up with it. Take the troll by its hand and look at its ugly face and peel it apart until it’s controlled in a manner that cannot hurt you.
Go to therapy
Go see a doctor
Workout and meditate
Acknowledge your self-destructive behavior and find a friend to hold you accountable
Talk about your pain
Do everything you need to do to win the struggle in your mind.
Be the security for your thoughts and feelings.
I beseech you to fight for your life!