I saw this video earlier this week and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I'm a successful person. I have a wonderful son. I have a family (blood and not) that cherish and love me. I was the first in my family with a bachelor's degree and the the only with a master's degree. I work for an award winning and cutting edge library and I love my career.
That doesn't stop the anxiety though. I always called the voice my Shadow (because I like fantasy and cope with things using it).
They don't really care about you. You're a waste. People just tolerate you. You're too needy. You're not a bad father. You're always going to be alone. You do more harm than good. Everyone would be better off if you just disappeared.
Don't get me wrong. I know these things aren't true, but that doesn't mean the thoughts don't crowd my head. When I'm not focused on a task the thoughts get too loud.
I fidget. I chew on my fingernails until they bleed and are tender for days after. I play with my beard. I run my fingers through my hair.
I break out in hives. Red bumps cover my skin. I itch.
I blog. I blog a lot. I have this blog and a gaming one. In the past year, I've made over 200 posts on the gaming one. I talk about projects I'm going to work on. Great plans. Grand schemes. They're just a momentary distractions.
I get fixated on things. I become obsessed with games or movies. I bug a friend about a cool idea that ultimately in the end we both know I probably won't follow through with.
But if I don't dream, hope, and try, then I go to a dark place that it's hard to come back from.
But I'm fine. Always fine. Ask me how I'm doing, 75% of the time, you'll get a forced smile and "I'm fine."
It's me. It's what I do. It's how I am.