Being fully human

Analysing anxiety

A feeling in the guts
The pit of the stomach
Gnawing, grinding, churning
Total and complete unease
Fear and dread
An overwhelming urge to run
Far far away
As swiftly as I can
Like a deer
silent and swift in its flight
To safety
And yet
Rooted to the spot
Unable to breathe
As though cryogenically frozen
Muscle tension
Pounding heartbeat
of an elite runner
Dilated pupils
Vigilant watchful awareness
Nothing can make it go away
Feeling this fear
All embracing
I am drowning
Day and night
Night and day
On constant red alert

Life had given me experiences (extreme experiences!) that mean I have to embrace self acceptance and to speak what I feel, or risk regret, which is not an option. Its not easy to do this, but I make myself do it everyday because it now the only way I feel I can now be. Is this  a gift or a curse? I really don’t know.

I have an acute sense of the finite nature of being alive. Every single moment is precious, yet this doesn’t stop me from whiling away whole hours staring into space, wishing and wandering and wanting. I don’t truly wish for anything to be different, the journey I have found myself on, step by step, is manifesting itself in a truly magical way, and in ways I would have never ever anticipated. Had I not had to endure the madness I would not have known the beauty and wonder. For these moments of magic and mystery I feel incredible gratitude.

However the washing machine of the mind has a way of turning over the emotions from time to time. I had never experienced any sense of real loss, melancholy, never had any insomnia, or anxiety before in my entire life. I am fortunate that I lived for a whole 47 years without these experiences.  It wasn’t that my life wasn’t stressful, I just found I was able to manage, I had good inner resources, and I perhaps didn’t overthink things for some reason.

And now… insomnia! Wakeful at all hours, sometimes no sleep at all, herbal teas and tinctures, breathing, Yoga Nidra….oh yes….still awake. Exhausted constantly yet so much energy I can not sit still. Now I understand, tell me about your insomnia, I have learned true empathy and compassion, and comradeship, for insomnia sufferers.

Clearly I was meant to experience massive life shifts for a reason. This has given me a true unadulterated understanding of all difficult emotions and reactions to the mindstuff, and of the power, the incredible all encompassing overwhelming power, of the mind. It also enables me to know that, although the theory is to work with this stuff in order to help to calm it, thats usually easier a lot said than done! So although I know that Yoga, meditation, running, writing, painting will all help me to alleviate the anxious state, I don’t always do it. Sometimes I just wallow in it, for quite some time. I know what I am doing but I just want to be left to sit in it for a while, to feel it. Like so many other people, I don’t always help myself in the best or most appropriate way possible. As I write this I am sitting in pyjamas at midday, not wanting to go anywhere or see anyone, hating Sunday mornings when people everywhere else on the planet (which is of course not the case) wake up together and play happy families (not that I would ever want this either!). Its the madness of the mind.

So, you know what I’m learning? We are all only human so lets give ourselves a break! We’re doing ok!

Its ok to not be perfect. Its ok to be aware that you are avoiding your feelings because at times they just feel so unbearable and undefinable. Its also ok to then re-embrace what you know will help, little by little, when you’re ready. And even then, its ok to not be ok as you do this. It does get easier, you have to keep trying, again and again, little by little. And that in itself is not easy.

So lets all embrace being human. Lets all rip off the outer skin and let it all go, lets just be emotional if we need to, tell people how we truly feel. Lets feel truly alive, and love every moment of what we feel and experience whether it be a difficult day with black storm clouds or whether it is a bright sunshine day (and its also ok to feel like you want to hide from the sunshine too by the way). Welcome it all, for everything passes in the end. All we can do is enjoy the ride.
Give yourself permission to be human, fully, wonderfully, madly human, stop hiding, stop being polite ‘Im fine thanks’ get rid of the stiff upper lip and be true to yourself. What does it mean for you to be truly human?