QUID, ME ANXIUS SUM?
Although like everyone I've experienced bouts of acute anxiety in respect of money, house moves, health issues, relationships and the like during a full life, I've always managed to maintain a functional balance between the problem and day-to-day living.
Over the past three years that balance has broken down and during periods of extreme stress I've found it increasingly difficult to apply myself to anything other than the immediate domestic and familial needs and priorities. The desire to write, read, listen to or play music, enjoy social time or engage in anything that requires concentration and commitment has been stifled by obsessive attention to the anxiety and its specific focus at the time.
I'm aware of what early emotional conflicts lie at the root of the anxiety and I recognise that recent health issues have compounded their influence. But this practical consciousness has done little or nothing to alleviate the effects of what I now recognise as a condition rather than a simple state of mind.
At the moment I'm free of anything other than low frequency concern about my standard post-cancer blood tests, which - decent prognosis notwithstanding - I feel to be natural and, I'm sure, common in my situation. So now I'm able to resume in those activities that bring pleasure, fulfilment and - most crucially - engagement with the world at large. Hopefully, I might have learned enough about the pathology of the condition from this last period of anxiety to be able to manage any relapse from my own resources. If not I shall have to activate the prescription for anti-depressants that my doctor has provided.
What I have been experiencing fitfully during the past three years is for many, I'm aware, an acute and more or less constant state of being. And for others it operates as a kind of emotional tinnitus in the background of daily process. For my part, I'm determined to redress the lost balance and restore my freedom of action, ideally drawing the energy from my own natural resources. I would very much appreciate any feedback from anyone reading this for whom anxiety is a significant functional problem. How does it affect you and how do you confront it?