Archive for October 2013

Feeding the Fear Monster   1 comment

Fearing something that you’re not supposed to know is like walking into a cave not knowing what’s inside.

I know something, and I shouldn’t have been told. The person who told me did so because she likes me. She wanted to give me a warning. She wanted to give me a heads-up. She wanted to give me time to fall apart on my own before the shit hit the fan and I had to cope.

But, fearing something that you’re not supposed to know is like walking into a cave not knowing what’s inside. It is dark. It is quiet. All I can hear is the sound of my own breathing, and all I know is that my torch will not work.

The Fear Monster is feeding. I am in fight-or-flight mode without anything physical to fight or to flee, and the Fear Monster is gorging itself on my terror.

My mother is a behavior analyst. She says there is no such thing as anxiety, that the feeling we get that we call being anxious is a triggered fight-or-flight mechanism with nothing tangible to fight or flee. It is a physical reaction to the adrenaline coursing through us and is a real reaction, but anxiety as a word shouldn’t label it. When I called her this evening to relay this thing that I’m not supposed to know, she said, “Don’t call it anxiety. You actually have a bear in the woods.”

I don’t necessarily agree with her on the term ‘anxiety’ and its use, but I agree with her that anxiety is not what I’m feeling. I am afraid. I am terrified. I have a tangible bear in the woods that is there even though it is not physical. And all the while this goes on, the Fear Monster keeps feeding.

I believe in feeding my monsters; that’s how I work with them. I feed them, and I try to integrate them into myself. They are me, after all. They, along with so many other things, make me who I am. Sometimes, feeding them is pleasurable. Other times, feeding them is necessary chore. But when it comes to the Fear Monster, feeding her is always something I’d rather not do. To feed her, I have to face and embrace my fear. Is there anyone whoever wants to do that?

As I write this, I’m in the same clothes I’ve been wearing for two days. My hair is filthy, and I feel like I’ve been through a war zone. And tomorrow, I think I’ll get up, and wash my hair, and guide the monster back to her box. She’s had three days to feed, after all, and I think that’s enough.

For now, anyway.

Posted October 20, 2013 by veggiewolf in Depression, Triggers

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