I guess I should be happy and relieved to see that the last time I fell prey to anxiety was in November. When I opened the editor this time I needed a way out very badly, and I remembered I had done this already, writing to take the edge off, so I went to check when it was. I suspected it could be a few weeks ago, seeing it was more than three months ago did make me feel relieved.

Anxiety has a way of distorting everything: space, time, feelings, rationality, everything. All you need to do is calm down, but you just can’t reason, you can’t take the spinning things in your hand to stop them, you just keep spinning. When you finally do calm down, you are so exhausted you don’t even remember what got you spinning.

I know what did, just now, because it’s not gone altogether. It’s something Hector told me, about living alone. Understanding the causes is easy: it can be anything really, in this case I’m tired, I am in a difficult phase of my life, I am all shaken up by the fact that I met someone I really like… it’s everything, but it doesn’t matter.

The fact is, up until now and now still, my reaction is giving in to anxiety. It’s probably just like stating the obvious, but I can’t control it. The fact is, up until now I’ve had my husband to turn to whenever anxiety pulled my strings, now I won’t have that anymore. And no, I don’t think it’s enough to stay with him, because yesterday I tried again, to be with him when I was in the middle of a crisis, and it’s just not the same anymore. True enough, we can’t be close now as we used to be when we were a couple, but it’s slightly more than that: I was talking about what scared me and he just didn’t answer accordingly, he thought about his anxiety. It was as good as talking to a wall, with the difference that when you talk to the wall, you know you can’t expect an answer.

The fact is, I am ashamed of my anxiety. More than any other thing in myself. If I make an effort, I can decide to let out parts of my feelings and thoughts which I usually keep within, when the time is right, when the listener is right. I’ve learnt to do that. But I still can’t think of calling anyone when I’m in the middle of an anxiety attack. Maybe I could talk to Faith, because she knows the topic so well, she wouldn’t be taken aback, but my first reaction is wanting to hide from the world.

Anxiety is something so private that I can think of partly letting it out only with someone I share an extremely deep bond with and I can rarely think of someone else rather than my partner. Which means, I don’t like calling my parents or my sister either when that happens. In this sense, now I need to face it all by myself. And this scares the shit out of me.

How do people do it? They say, anxiety is basically the most widespread condition af all in developed countries, I guess I can’t be the only one. How do the others do it? Do they keep it for themselves, do they use massive doses of drugs – either legal or illegal – do they talk to someone and if so to whom? I need a plan.

It won’t be this bad every single day, it’s going to swing back and forth and from what I’ve seen in the past few weeks, it can be good, it can be better than it used to be before I even met my husband. But the lack of a plan in case of need automatically alarms me enough to make me anxious. It’s a vicious circle and the only way to step out of it is finding a cause and working on the solution.

I realise I am tackling a fundamental problem here, when I say some things I can share only with a partner. But I still don’t know how to work around it. On the one hand, it’s wrong to charge a relationship with such a burden. On the other, I am human and as such I must accept the fact that I need other people and human relations to survive. Is it unrealistic for me to expect I should learn to count only on myself? Of course I need friends, I need social interactions, but should I learn to cope with “the serious stuff” by myself or should I rather learn to split the burden with someone else? And if not a partner, with whom?

I have deeply suffered the lack of a profound communication with my husband, probably exactly because of this. Because I expected him to be the one who should act as a repository for these troubles and in fact he no longer was it and because I hadn’t trained myself to do it with anybody else. Throughout my relationship with him, I managed to distance myself from my parents, in a way. This may sound like a very bad thing, truth is it’s not, not given the relationship we have and the kind of people they are. I am happy to be independent from them, or rather, from my mother. The problem with it is, I suppose I managed that because I had just created a family of my own on the other side. Once that broke too, I am completely on my own.

I suppose, my situation is different from that of the majority of people. I normally fear loneliness much more than others do and at the same time I have fewer resources to reduce my loneliness to a minimum. It’s the hard way, the one I always seem to choose, maybe the only one I know how to navigate. I have begged myself to cut me some slack, but I can’t seem to understand how I should do it. I agree that I don’t need to be perfect to be happy, on the contrary, it might make everything worse, but I can’t get out of the loop and act accordingly. I can’t make those necessary mistakes that would make me feel better. Or maybe I’m doing just right and can’t expect to always feel fine. Maybe this best I can do which I’m doing is really just enough and I can’t do any more.

I keep thinking about all the things Hector said. I can hardly find anything wrong with it, it seems such a wise way to go. I envy him and I would like to copy his ways. It seems to have worked out for him and I need a project so much, some path to follow to give me some hope that I will really get where I want to go… I understand how I tend to get excited pretty much about any guy I meet lately, and that it’s hard to believe this has more reasons to it than just the heat of the moment… but I really feel he could make a difference. But from his point of view, I could be completely wrong. If I want someone to lead me, why shouldn’t he want someone like that too? Why would he want to be with a wreck such as I am right now, someone who could lead him back in the depths instead of someone just happy to live and ready to give instead of taking? I am not sure how much I can give right now, not because I don’t want to, not because I don’t need to, just because… not because of me, because of him. I want and I need to share everything I learnt along the way and I suppose once I share everything with someone he will learn something from it, maybe something I don’t even recognise as a lesson worth giving. It’s just that what he could give me is so big that I don’t believe I could reciprocate that. And I may very well be wrong. If nothing else, because he might not be aware of all of this.

Again, this is why I say this is all psychobabble: all of this is just in my head and he may have well forgotten my name by now.

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