I Choose Not to Make Anxiety My Reality.

I’m ghost writing a book for someone right now. This is always fun stuff and I look forward to getting projects like this. I’ve probably done this a dozen times in the past ten years or so and it never gets old.

This one happens to be about positive thinking.

Do you know how difficult it is to write a 200 page book about positive thinking when you’re having an existential crisis based on your own circumstances? I’m also watching several of my good friends go through the same thing I’ve gone through in the past month – losing parents at the same time I did, battling illnesses themselves, dealing with their parents’ illnesses and related issues. It’s a lot. And while it’s nice to have someone who understands what you’re going through – especially when so many other people don’t know what to say – there’s also more to it in terms of the existential nature of it.

I started talking to a grief counselor to make sure my head is on straight. It’s a good idea and if you can do it, I highly recommend it when needed. He’s brilliant.

One of the main things he tells people in my situation is that it’s scary to lose a parent, or people around you, because it reduces your mortality buffer. Meaning, you’re next. There is no generational wedge between you and death anymore. You have to come right up against the fact that it’s going to happen.

You can look at this one of two ways. You can be scared absolutely to death, or you can choose freedom. I would like to choose freedom.

This is not an easy choice for me. It’s not easy because anxiety is comfortable and it’s familiar. Being prepared for the worst makes sense when the worst is absolutely inevitable. This state of mind is a place to hide. It’s a mental fortress.

The problem with being a constant worrier is that it takes a mental and physical toll on you. No amount of yoga is going to help if you do the yoga and you’re still worrying on the mat. It also makes you a horrible pain in the ass to deal with for everyone around you. My patient and loving partner has accepted it as part the cost of being with me. But is this who I really want to be? I would not wish that reality for anyone else in my life, even strangers. So why do I continue to choose to make it my reality?

So, I choose to not make anxiety my reality.

This will not be easy. It will be terrible. It will require a lifelong commitment, for however long this life continues to last. But! Rewriting the script is important because the script no longer serves me.

I’m not really encouraging anyone out there to do the same thing or anything. You have to be where you are. But if you don’t like where you are, you have to be elsewhere. It’s pretty simple really.

So, long story short, I was in my bathroom at midnight last night sitting on a drum stool while my boyfriend gave me a mohawk.

Because damn it, I choose Freedom.

And I am absolutely the right person to be ghost writing that book.

Amber Turrill

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