So, in the last few weeks I’ve only published one thing written by me. I don’t know if anyone has actually noticed – and it’s totally okay if you haven’t – I’ve gone to some effort to conceal my “writer’s block”; frequently posting amusing memes on social media and sharing guest articles.
I have Anxiety at the moment. It’s not bad, it’s just not good. I’ve talked about my mental health from time to time, more in the context of my experience with it in the postnatal period, but for me Anxiety is a thing that I almost always have. It’s practically part of who I am now. Most of the time it’s just a quiet hum of irrational fears constantly running in the background of my mind – like a noisy fan – it’s annoying, but I can ignore it.
Other times it’s a little harder to ignore.
Usually when I have other stresses in my life it gets a little harder to filter out all that background noise of anxious thoughts.
The thoughts that my friends don’t actually like me, that I’m failing my children, that I’m going to die in a car accident, that people are going to realise I’m not actually any good at anything and so on.
These are the thoughts that I normally filter out and dismiss. I KNOW they’re not true. But when I’m finding it hard to push them aside, they just start to pile up on me. And any evidence that they could be plausible would undo me.
Which is why I won’t publish my own work right now. because I know how vulnerable I am and I know how callous the internet can be.
I don’t think I could handle even the most polite and well intentioned negative feedback at the moment. (Because even now I’m hearing “Why are you publishing something to say you can’t publish anything? Do you know how stupid that sounds? You’re just doing this for attention….” and so on.)
So, for now, I just wanted to say a couple of things….
- I’m actually okay. As strange as that sounds. I don’t want anyone to worry. Really, please don’t. I’ll feel guilty if I make people worry.
- Anxiety is a bitch – and as much as I like to think I have it beat, sometimes I need to take care of myself, which means sheltering myself a little.
- Hopefully very soon I’ll be able to publish some of the things I’ve been working on, because my docs file is full of interesting titles I’m looking forward to sharing.
- If we’re friends in real life, can we pretend that you never read this. Because of point 1. Though you’re probably aware I’ve been a little more jittery than usual; but if I say I’m fine, just roll with it.