Wednesday, August 11, 2010

the view from within the maelstrom

I was contemplating whether to share this or not but after reading Tara Whitney's candid discussion over on her blog, I feel like I kind of have to. I can totally relate to her concerns about balancing the needs of her daughter against the needs of her family because I'm the one who everyone needs to compensate for. My commentary on this blog is very hit-and-run; I leave snapshots of my life and only describe whatever it is I want you to know. That allows me not to discuss my anxiety and the way that I have to compensate for it hardcore to experience a lot of what I'm sharing. I'm lucky in that having my camera and throwing myself into getting that perfect shot helps to diffuse the situation.

Last night was one of those occasions where having Marjorie saved me. I spent a good hour begging and pleading silently with the car to turn around and take me home. I actually told Doug that I wanted to go home, that I'd rather be secure at my computer than at the Scott Pilgrim sneak peek showing. Trying to drive down to Miami Beach made me genuinely hope my heart would burst and end the insufferable pain (and I wasn't even the one driving). I promise you, I love the world and live for the moments I explore it with my camera. But the whirlpool I get sucked into when my anxiety overwhelms me is enough to make me unable to remember the way the sun feels on my face or how wonderful the air smells after a storm. The movie was great... and then the drive home made it worse.

I'm trying to coordinate a trip to Orlando this weekend that is both a relief from everything that's been pressing in on me all summer and a new set of problems I'm not sure I can handle. The crush of people in the theme parks, the way it's so easy to get separated from my family (and yes, I am an adult), how overstimulated and overwhelmed I get, the planning required to make this work, and the being all alone at a concert that I've been dying to see forever but now I'm not so sure I want to go to anymore... It's hard.

For every moment that is calm like the lights and the raindrops on the windshield, there are a million that assault my senses like an ambulance barreling headfirst towards an unprepared me.

This is what it looks like to be me.

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