Over the past three or so years this illness has been talked about more and more, whether thats on the news, social media or even in schools. People are now educating themselves on what affect it has on us, our mental health and also how it is affecting our social behaviours. Being anxious is normal, to a point, everyone in their life would’ve felt some kind of anxiety but for a majority of us its constant, it’s waking up in the morning and feeling anxious, going to sleep and feeling anxious. It never stops.

Having anxiety is isolating, it’s the sweaty palms and the nausea, it’s either being too shy or too loud to try and shut out the voices in your head that constantly tell you that people are looking at you. It’s skipping classes so that you don’t have to feel your throat close up again, it’s staying at home instead of going to social events because the thought of going makes you feel drained and ill. From the shaky hands to making a distraction so that no one thinks that somethings wrong. It’s mentally exhausting.

The invisibility of it means that some people don’t take it seriously, they think you’re lazy or boring. What I’ve learnt over the past three years is to not take it personally when someone calls you “lazy”, they just don’t understand what it’s like to live with anxiety. No matter how much you tell yourself that you’re weak, you’re not. We are strong, we put up with it constantly. We go through hours of counselling and taking anxiety pills just to get it to stop.

But most importantly.

We are surviving.

Lauren Goodrick-Meech


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