Anxiety was something I first experienced as young child and I have lived with it ever since. When I was that young, I had no idea what anxiety was and even as a young adult, I still didn’t understand it. I just knew that as a child, that I hit points or situations where I really struggled, in terms of knots in my stomach, worry, fear and lots of overthinking. It makes me sad to look back and think about how much I must have suffered as a child, with no understanding of what I was feeling or why I was feeling this way.
I began to accept it as part of my personality, as I didn’t know any different and learnt to live with these unknown feelings. It’s only been 6 years or so since I discovered the term “anxiety”. It was only then, that I realised this is what I had been suffering with for all these years. Anxiety wasn’t as recognised or spoken about back then, as much as it is now.
Different stages of my life have brought on my anxiety without me realising and it’s only after these key moments in my life that I learnt.
My anxiety causes me to worry, stress and harbour fear about certain situations or certain confrontations. I feel trapped inside of my own mind with constant thoughts firing around that are out of my control. This is very frustrating for me. As part of my anxiety, I also struggle with OCD which can cause me to become quite obsessive. Only after fully understanding these feelings, will you have the opportunity to reflect and act on them. I have since, been able to master this obsessiveness and channel it into something positive; studying, self-love, self-care and my health.
As I have aged, I have learnt how to manage my anxiety a lot better. Like I stated earlier, I never knew I suffered with it until later in life. It was a word I never heard much of when growing up, but now it seems to be everywhere and a lot more spoken about, which is amazing in generating positive conversations surrounding mental health.
Anxiety just became a part of my life, a part of me and before any true understanding, I grew used to feeling this way.
Being diagnosed with breast cancer brought everything to the surface and this is when I really experienced the height of anxiety. I had lost full control over it and my emotions (which was scary). I felt like I was a child again, all these strong emotions coming over me like waves but out of my control. It is now, that I realise how bad it can get and how much it can honestly affect your day to day life.
I’m having to learn all over again how to control it, as if I was back at square one and all my hard work has been undone. But I am slowly and surely climbing back up and regaining some of that control again. Practising meditation helps me a lot and I now meditate on a daily basis, as part of my self-care routine. The use of CBD oil is amazing at keeping me calm and seems to keep my anxiety at bay on some occasions.
Going through a life-changing experience can be tough on anybody but staying strong and positive has been key for me and my anxiety. Anxiety is part of my life. I have excepted it and by learning to live with it, I have been able to achieve the things in life where before I had control over my anxiety, it could very easily have got in the way. But I never let it, I never gave up.
We can’t let these things define us and we need to find ways (that suit you) to push through and support you, even on the toughest of days.
Things which help me are:
• A Healthy Balanced Diet
• Breathing Techniques
• Enough Sleep
• Limiting Caffeine
• Laughter & Happy Thoughts
Anxiety will always be a part of my life and I now embrace and accept it. This has helped me feel more in control and cope with it a lot easier than before. Do not suffer in silence. There is so much help out there for anxiety and it is most definitely nothing to be ashamed of. If you are feeling anxious, talk to a loved one about it or perhaps your GP.