Anxiety: Why am I faking it?

I hope you had a good weekend.

Me? Not so much.

Before I get into the why’s, I just want to let you know that things are going to get very real here today. If you’re not into reading that, hopefully I will catch you another day.

Normally on Monday, I would link up with Erin or Katie and share the details of our weekend. You know, what we did, what we ate, how much I worked out, Matilda being adorable, blah, blah, blah…

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We grocery shopped, did laundry, ate food, I worked out, Matilda was dutifully adorable as always. There, now that we’re caught up, let’s talk about something else that happened this weekend and has happened multiple times in the past.

I have been dealing with some old demons lately.

Normally, I wouldn’t tell you the truth.

I would pretend that everything was fine. I would show you lots of pictures of nice things that really happened, but I just would keep the other ‘bad’ stuff to myself.

I’ve gotten very good over the years at smiling through the pain, or at least that’s what I tell myself. I’m sure those who are close to me know, but everyone else I keep at arm’s length.

However, after reading Danielle’s and Suzy‘s blog posts on anxiety, I felt a little braver. I was so impressed by their willingness to share their demons. And, I just felt so relieved. Not only was I not alone, but here were some awesome and brave ladies who were and are sharing their struggles.

Part of the reason that I started writing a blog was as a sort of catharsis. I needed an outlet to share my anger and frustrations. Well, here goes…

It all started on Friday night when I didn’t sleep. At all. All night.

I don’t know if you’ve ever been there before, but it’s awful. I found myself so very tired, yet unable to turn my brain off. As soon as I turned off the light, fear and anxiety would rear their ugly heads. My heart would race as thoughts and fears played out in my mind like the film reel of an old projector. Over and over and over and over again.

I am no stranger to this. My anxieties are unwelcome visitors who show up from time to time and always overstay their welcome.

I spent the night going back and forth between reading and tossing and turning. Finally around 5:30, I conceded that insomnia had won and I decided to ‘get up for the day’. Did you see my instagram picture? I’m such a faker, right? It looked like such a sweet and cozy scene.

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hahaha. fooled you.

Over the past few days, I keep asking myself, why am I faking it? 

I’ve always been a very dark, intense; and reactive sort of person with many feelings of fear, frustration, and anxiety. I am also not great at dealing with them.

I used to take depression medicine when I was a teenager and in my early twenties, but stopped when I was about 25 and going through a divorce. That’s a story for another day.

I thought I could deal with everything on my own. I thought I could change my diet, work out a lot, and ‘fix myself.’ I was wrong.

It turns out, I can’t out-run, out-lift, or out-yoga my problems. It turns out that there is no diet that is healthy enough to fix my problems.

I should be so happy, right? I have a sweet and supportive husband. John and I were able to have a baby despite my infertility. I am able to stay home with my little girl. Even though I’ve made some friends over the last few months – all of you who have taken the time to read or comment on my little blog. Thank you.

If you’re reading this, I wonder, would we be friends in real life?

I would like to think yes. But, I know myself too well.

I’m incredibly shy and standoffish

I can’t make small talk to save my life.

I’m very socially awkward and always have been.

In fact, the only time I ever really felt ‘at ease’ was when I was on stage acting in a play. It felt so freeing because I wasn’t being myself anymore. I was being someone else. 

I think that’s the reason I love Halloween so much. You get to dress up and pretend to be someone else for a while.

I’m always jealous of people who have and maintain friendships for decades. I tend to only let people get close enough to a point, then I push them away. 

Even though I have so many good things in my life right now, I still don’t feel better. Why?

It’s not a question I can answer. 

I have no questions for you today. If you made it this far, thank you. Thank you for reading this and letting me get some things off my chest. 

I hope your Monday is wonderful.

 

 

 

 

Hungry For Balance

I am a thirty-something personal trainer, nutrition coach, wife, mother, and former English teacher on a life-long journey for balance. I love writing, reading, cooking, baking, fitness in all its forms, my wonderful husband, and my adorable daughter.

Comments 18

  1. Thanks for being real, Heather. Realness is what we all really crave, truly.
    This past summer my night time anxiety got very bad, so I decided to see a therapist at my school. It was nice being able to talk to someone about fears without the fear of burdening them. Last week I started taking melatonin and it has helped too! Oddly the anxiety doesn’t start until around 8 pm or so, and during the day I am fine.
    I’m praying for you girl.
    Kate recently posted…Birthday weekendMy Profile

    1. Thank you Kate!! My anxieties are south worse at night. I think talking to a therapist would be such a good idea for me. I had (selfishly) never thought about how my crazy problems could be burdening my loved ones, especially John.

  2. I’m glad you shared how you are really feeling and hopefully you are reaping the rewards of being real with yourself too. I’ve found that my anxiety ebbs and flows with life. It’s ramping up for me on schedule with my end of the year workload and I’m trying different tactics to handle it. All that to say that you aren’t alone! I want to reach through this screen and give you a hug!

  3. Oh damn I’m totally virtually hugging you right now! Thanks for the props as well. But seriously, you are not alone. The struggle is real and racing thoughts are like the cherry on top. I know what you’re going through. Putting on a happy face isn’t always real or easy or genuine, but the times we fake it I think it’s for everyone else. Like our loved ones. Letting them believe we’re ok is sometimes an act of love, so they don’t worry. I don’t know if I’m making sense, but I certainly came from dark places. I used to believe that I was born a dark witch but forced to live on earth as punishment. Hello overactive imagination! Then I decided that I’m a white witch because I still have love in my heart. Either way I still feel like an imaginary creature. Which is odd but was my way of trying to survive the madness in the world. Trusting people is hard, reaching out is hard. But every now and then someone special comes along, like your husband and my husband, and they stick around. There are people that love you no matter what and truly see the true beauty inside. The messy parts, the crazy parts. It’s all beautiful!!! The craziest thing is when my husband says he needs to go out of town for work, my first thought is I can binge. Shit! Then I remember I’m not doing that anymore… I have this amazing life. But sometimes I still have dark thoughts and tendencies. It’s just called being real. The only thing that is perfect is still flawed, a sunrise, because you have to actually pay attention to see it. I’m working on it. Love you and thanks for being real. It’s beautiful to open up and let the light in.

  4. I’m so glad you shared this today, Heather. I enjoy getting to know you more beyond just what you eat or do as a workout. Like you, small talk is not a forte of mine, so I appreciate when people share more of their heart. Anxiety is something I think a lot of people struggle with, but it’s more of a silent struggle. I wish I had answers on this topic, but I don’t. I hope that you will be able to find some answers that work for you though and that will be able to give you peace of mind whenever your mind starts playing those games with you.
    Stacie @ SimplySouthernStacie recently posted…Weekend Recap: The Weekend I Almost Officially Became a Cat LadyMy Profile

  5. Hey beauty! Good job getting this all out. That took courage! Anxiety is a party-wrecker, hey? But let’s use it to bring people together instead. I hope you catch up on your sleep and are able to manage the anxiety this week and if not, I’m here to help. XO
    Suzy recently posted…Mileage MondayMy Profile

  6. Please accept my virtual hug, because if I were near by I’d probably be at your door with junk food, magazines, and coffee to watch crappy TV and not talk about anything because that’s what I do.
    Also, I think we’re the same person – I think all the time that sometimes I feel like such a phony on the blog since I’m definitely not friendly and outgoing in real life. Seriously, I have like maybe 2 real friends who i rarely see because I’m half lazy and half just want to be along most of the time.
    Keep doing you, lady. Do what feels good, what makes you happy. Keep being a great mom and wife, because in the long run, that’s what matters. Don’t worry about being fake or whatever, or doing what you think people want you to do/what people “want’ to read/etc because we all love you and spend time with you daily because we like who YOU are. Thank you for sharing your own struggles with us!
    Morgan @ Morgan Manages Mommyhood recently posted…Best of the Weekend: The Great OutdoorsMy Profile

  7. I get it, I really do. I know how hard it is some days to just make yourself get up and pretend you are okay, when all you want to do is pull the covers over your head and never come out. But we do come out because we have to not only for ourself but for those who love and depend on us. It is a constant struggle and sometimes you feel like you are losing the battle, but you are strong and there are so many people who love you. Please always know I am there if just to listen and hold your hand. I will never give up on you! I love you forever.

  8. Aww I’m so glad you shared this! It’s tougher to share things to people in person, I’ve found, than on the blog. I swear you all know more about my life than half my friends do! I’m glad you kept it real today because Anxiety and depression isn’t something to hide. It’s very real and can help someone else who may be dealing with it as well! You’re brave for sharing this, and I hope you got a better night sleep after no sleep!
    Heather @Fit n Cookies recently posted…Operation Get Baby Moving WorkoutMy Profile

  9. You are so, so not alone in this. I think far too many of us go about life “pretending,” or wearing that mask that says, “everything’s fine.” I wish it wasn’t this way. I wish I – all of us – could feel okay with being ourselves, being authentic, and bringing whatever we are feeling to the world. I’ve been seeing a therapist for a number of years to combat the deeply engrained feelings of embarrassment and shame, and now I couldn’t imagine not having that outlet. Constantly feeling like you are “lying,” or constantly keeping your feelings inside without talking only makes us crumble. Thank you for sharing your true thoughts with us. This was truly brave and I hope, has helped lift some of the demons away.

  10. Oh, my dear. As you can see, no, you are absolutely not alone. I, too, started a blog as a sort of cartharsis and a way of reaching out of the loneliness that I was experiencing. What the blog has provided for me is a way to find connection when Alex is far away (even if he is in the same city)–you can tell by how much time I’m spending working on the blog or social media as to what rotation he is in! I get moments of anxiety that occur re-the blog, but in general, I don’t. For some reason, it is a place that I truly feel myself. I don’t question myself. But at the same time, while I am sitting here, not questioning myself, the other parts of my life make me feel unstable, resulting in nightsweats that I didn’t think I would be having. I am a confident person…. until I’m not. And there have been some things going on in my life that have made me question myself. But then I go to training, I coach my clients, and I talk with you all, and I feel like myself again.
    In short, keep writing, keep putting yourself out there. If noone reads? (which is obviously NOT the case!) SO FREAKING WHAT. You need to be here for you.
    Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Tackling Taper: Marathon and Race Taper Strategy GuideMy Profile

  11. Thank you for being so real and honest. Anxiety is definitely something that comes out at night for me. I tend to spend the day in autopilot, just getting through the motions, and exercise plays a role in helping to make things ‘right’, even if it’s not solving much, or sometimes making things worse… but then as soon as my head hits the pillow, my mind kicks into gear. My lovely housemate just bought me some herbal sleeping pills (Ziziphus and Lactium) that have helped me somewhat. Even though it sucks, it’s good to see that others are going through this. Thank you again for sharing- I hope and pray you’ll get regular, quality sleep.
    Elizabeth recently posted…Rest, and hearing yourself through the noise.My Profile

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