During uncertain times, it can be easy to feed into our fear.
A cat moved in the bush that I had just walked by and it completely startled me. I almost dropped the toothpaste and felt a jolt of electric panic strike my body. I tripped on my own foot and an intense surge of anxiety ran from my stomach up to my chest and back again.
I think it’s official. I’m scared.
I had been cruisin’ through this whole pandemic isolation thing just fine, until things started loosening up. Now, I’m terrified, but the funny thing is that it’s a physical terror that seems to be rooted all the way in my bones.
Logically, I know I’m fine, my family is fine and we have been doing well with isolation, hand washing, cleanliness, etc. But my anxiety doesn’t seem to care, and now that the freedom boundaries are being pushed, my fear is trying hard to take over.
It’s showing up places where I’m normally fine…like on my daily walk when a damn cat scared the crap out of me by simply moving. I’m having trouble making decisions, and I when I finally do make one, I obsess over if that was actually the right decision to have made.
I’m so tired of my fear right now. It’s like having another person in the room with me at all times, making me doubt my every move. And when I say “every move”, I mean EVERY MOVE.
I question the Netflix show I’m watching. Deciding whether or not to eat a sugary treat is filled with terror and then fear gives me more shit even after I eat the damn treat.
Should I surf? Should I not? Should I hang out at the beach? Should I be scared my kid is hanging with her friends? Am I washing my hair too much? Blah blah blah blah blah. It’s never ending.
I know I’m a capable person, but this fear thing, it seems to always have its claws in my shoulder, forever holding me back.
And it’s fucking exhausting. It makes me feel like I’m broken. I am forever jealous of people who are sure of themselves. Why can’t I seem to believe in myself and my decisions. I know I’m a capable person, but this fear thing, it seems to always have its claws in my shoulder, forever holding me back.
I feel like I’m in my own way most of the time. I think that one reason I was feeling just fine when our county was being asked to stay home, is because the amount of decisions to be made was forcibly reduced. All of a sudden, there were way less options.
Now we’re in a weird kind of limbo, waiting for more freedom, or for it to be taken away again…. We’ll see which way it goes. And you know what causes my fear to blow up? Uncertainty. There are too many “what ifs” right now, and my anxiety loves a good “what if” party. The fun never stops.
I feel like I’m driving my family crazy because if I had my way, I be just fine isolating for the foreseeable future. I don’t even need an end date. I work from home. I love cooking food for my family. I now know that I love freezing food so we always have something for dinner out of the freezer.
I built a veggie garden. I finished my back yard, and I now absolutely enjoy doing my computer work outside on the patio. My work has changed with all the other changes happening, and it’s fun to see where that’s all going.
But I worry. I worry about my friends and family who are chomping at the bit for things to “go back to normal” (whatever the hell that is). My parents are diligently isolating and disinfecting everything that comes into the house. I worry that the steps they are taking don’t matter if all of us aren’t taking the same steps.
I’m scared that the life we have all worked so hard to build is crumbling away.
And FINE. I’ll admit it. I worry about getting sick. I worry about anyone I know getting sick. I’m petrified that I could be actually walking around without any symptoms, infecting others. I’m scared that my art biz won’t survive this. I’m scared that the life we have all worked so hard to build is crumbling away.
I’m sick over the fact that my daughter has decided to not go to college in the Fall. Not because I want her to go, but because I know that she REALLY wanted to go, but she doesn’t want to risk having to move out of the dorms in October because of a outbreak of Covid-19.
I’m sad that she’s missing her high school graduation and I’m finally ready to admit, that I’m also extremely sad that I’m missing her high school graduation. She’s my only kiddo. That was my only chance to see that. I cried when I returned her text books and picked up her cap and gown, which we’re still not sure that she’ll get a chance to wear.
I don’t know what’s right or wrong anymore.
I don’t know what’s right or wrong anymore. Everyone I know seems to have different opinions on how we should be responding right now. Very few agree on all points. It makes me question myself more, even though I feel strongly and surely about what I believe. What if I’m the one that’s wrong? What if, what if, what if….
My husband keeps saying that we have to live our lives. Yes, I agree…and no I fucking don’t. Are we so singular that we have to keep living our lives, or is it ok at times, to take a pause for the greater good?
I’m scared that I have had a more peaceful time than I’ve had in years, just by staying home. What if home is where I prefer being? Would me wanting to simply be home more effect my relationships?
Aw crap. There are a lot of questions in this blog post. Sorry, but that’s all I have to offer this week.
But maybe you could help me. In the comments, I’d love to know, when you feel fear starting to take over, what’s one thing you do to keep it at bay?
I’m going to go walk to visit my friend’s horse today and try to do a few sketches. Don’t worry, I won’t be touching it as horses scare me…are you surprised?
The painting at top is Psychedelic Sea Stars, 8"x10", Acrylic on Canvas, framed in a black natural wood floater frame. My surfboard collection makes me happy and reminds me to go with the flow and ride the wave that's in front of me. For more details and purchase info, CLICK HERE.
I am an anti-anxiety artist and writer, living in Talent, Oregon with my husband and daughter. I use creativity to break through anxiety paralysis, I play in the ocean to stay strong and inspired, and I often visit my hometown of New Orleans, where the rhythm of my heartbeat is renewed. Follow me on Facebook and Instagram where I post stuff sometimes. To hear from me more regularly, join me on this Crazy, Beautiful Artventure.