via Daily Prompt: Churn
churn – to move violently……
When I saw this word today my first reaction was that it perfectly describes how my “guts” feel when I am in the midst of an anxiety episode. I’ve never really considered a word to describe how my body feels during these times. This word, in my mind, does a great job of it. When dealing with this it’s impossible to eat, to focus or to sleep. It’s like a dark cloud has descended on me and all I can think about is all the negative possibilities. I can say to myself, “Focus on the positive, live in the moment”…..but my body tells me that it’s time to run. When people talk about the human instinct of fight or flight, I’m all flight. I might as well be a bird.
I hate these times, I’ve dealt with them since I was a child. After a while I stopped dealing with them and tried to numb them. To stop feeling them altogether. And it worked for a while. I could have a drink or two and my world would mellow out. I think I’ve mentioned this before but it’s like the volume in my head got turned down from a Slayer concert to a Rafi concert. I remember as a kid I used to have these stuffed animals that were my safety blanket. It started with a lion and I used to squeeze him when I couldn’t stop the churning and I would be unable to sleep. Sadly I eventually squeezed all the stuffing out of him. Then I moved on to a stuffed Poppa Smurf, he met the same fate over time.
As I approached double digits in age I turned to books as a method to distract myself during these times. Many a night was spent reading until day break. I became pretty good at functioning on little sleep. Although it did make me pretty moody and I learned later that lack of sleep is a contributor to my anxiety.
I now am trying to focus on the “moment” and live on the terms presented to me. I am not perfect and I still have the odd night that I wake up with a start after a bad dream or a troubling thought about my future. But happily they aren’t as bad as they used to be.