I’ve had anxiety as far back as I can remember. When I was a very small child my mother got me a book called “The Very Worried Sparrow”. I’m pretty sure it had something to do with God having his eye on the sparrow so I don’t need to worry so much. I still did, though. I’ve always been an anxious child and that only turned me into an anxious adult. My anxiety is always best treated with anti-anxiety medication, which with the state of healthcare in America these days- mental health help is not easy to come by here. Take into account my ex-husband ridiculed me for needing them, calling me “crazy” and worse, that when we divorced I weaned myself off of taking anything.
And I have truly suffered from my anxiety for 10 very long years.
I’ve done everything I could to try to quell it naturally. Meditation. Meditation tapes. Vitamins. Breathing exercises. Strenuous exercise. Subliminal messages. Mantras. You name it, I’ve more than likely tried it.
Anxiety manifests in strange ways, and sometimes it’s hard for people to understand it even if you’re the one having it. You KNOW your responses aren’t rational. Sometimes it’s irritability. Sometimes it’s hyperventilating. Sometimes the room just closes in. Sometimes it feels like a heart attack. Sometimes you just spaz out. Sometimes it’s just too much and you feel the glass start to crack.
This happened pretty bad for me the other week. I could feel it had been building and I had been trying to keep a hold on things. Sometimes, your arms are just too full with life to carry the burden of your anxiety, too.
For about a year I had been planning a trip to Cabo for my 40th birthday. I wanted to bring along my sister and my two best friends. My sister ended up not being able to go. It would be my first time out of the country and I had hoped perhaps a celebration of me and all I’ve been through since my divorce, and all that I’ve accomplished. Having never booked travel out of the country I checked and double-checked every detail. Still, the anxiety that I had missed something or I had failed to plan correctly consumed me. What if? What if? What ifs kill me. I couldn’t sleep or eat for days before we left.
Our first night at the resort, I got very inebriated very quickly. I had not eaten or slept for days so I’m sure this contributed. I awoke at one point to the sound of The Lion King show and realized I was alone on a lounge chair near the pool. The lights were off. I didn’t have my shoes or my cover-up and I definitely had not sobered up at that point. Where were my two best friends? Why would they leave me there? Where were my things? Where was the key to the room? WHERE ARE MY FRIENDS!? They had left me unconscious and unattended at a resort in a foreign country. After quite a fiasco, I found my way back to the room, and I’m assuming someone found my shoes and cover up as they were tossed on the bed next to me when I awoke the next morning.
Still, they left me…and that left an impression.
I woke up the next morning and contemplated if I should just book a flight home. The travel to get there was so long and laborious and I really didn’t have the money to make a change to my flight reservation. So I made the best of it, and for the most part, we had a good time that day. That night we went out with a group that one of my friends had befriended and during the course of the evening someone kissed her. She had refused to return to the resort with myself and my other friend and the kiss happened somewhere in-between our arriving back at the resort and our friend following shortly thereafter.
It was just a kiss. Too many drinks. An innocent kiss. At least that’s what was described.
But the next morning, the morning of my actual milestone birthday, she was weepy and crying about how she had “cheated” and she wouldn’t be drinking or going out or doing anything “crazy” that day. She spent most of the day vomiting, laying around being weepy, and crying. The day was low key. They even decided to take naps, and it was eventually announced since no one made reservations for dinner for my birthday (apparently they thought I should have done that) it was announced that a low-key night in was in order. I went along with it because I didn’t want to ruin the trip with fighting. We had a decent low-key evening, a good last day, and then home again, home again, jiggety-jig.
Not exactly the celebration I had planned, but the resort was nice.
The moment I landed back in the states my ex-husband started an argument and court was brought up and that just honestly after everything- being jet-lagged, tired, too much food and alcohol from the all-inclusive resort- it was too much. I tried to hold back breaking down and crying and did so silently while my travel partner played on her phone.
The glass was really starting to crack at this point.
The day after we returned everything just went to shit, basically.
I tried desperately to relate what was going on. “You’re being irrational!” YES! YES, I KNOW! Please help me. I felt despondent. I felt anxious and out of control. I needed them to be there for me the way I had been there for both of them before. Just like the time I stood on the porch of a mutual acquaintance’s parent’s doorstep and told them that I felt they needed to check on their daughter because she was exhibiting some concerning signs while my friend who was too afraid to do it laid down in the seat of my car so as not to be seen.
Or the time the other friend who needed an emergency procedure and was going to go alone, but I insisted on being there for her just in case she may need someone. She said she did and I went gladly. Yet, here I stood pleading to both of them to help me now, and it was met with blocking me on all social media and abandoning me.
I really miss my friends. Like REALLY MISS them in my soul. But I think what I miss most was the friendship I thought we had. I loved them both and was loyal to both and they’ve up and disappeared from my life without a single second thought about it. I see now where I always stood. Ancillary. A minor role. A recurring character.
Still, I’m pushing forward. I’m doing what needs to be done to get better mentally. I wish I didn’t have to do it alone, but I am confident in my ability to be alone and thrive alone.
I would do anything for the people I love. I hope one day to find that kind of love and loyalty in return.