1. The Worst Day Of The Year
Why The Anxious Morning had to launch on January 3
This was the worst day of the year for me.
The Anxious Morning could really only launch today. There is poetry and justice in the fact our first edition is being published on January 3.
This is the day that the holiday break officially ends for most of the world and we return to reality. Did I mention that it was the worst day of the year? I did, right?
For a struggling agoraphobic, a 7-10 day respite where the world places no demands on you and it is permissible to hide in your house all the time is like a gift sent from above.
You mean avoidance is OK now? I can spend a week or so at a safe distance from all my panic triggers and all the scary things?
Sign me up!
The sense of relief at the start of the break was awesome. But after a few days, I would become aware that what I was doing was likely not healthy. I knew that not leaving the house for three straight days was not OK, but I did nothing about it. I would stick my head between the cushions and deny reality. It was was only December 28. I still had time!
Come New Year’s Eve, the end of the break was looming before me. Depression would start to creep in. Dread would start to build. It was almost over.
My avoidance and retreat “hall pass” was going to expire in a few days and there was nothing I could to do stop it.
The break would end, and I would start a new year in a dark place, feeling worse than I did before. Worse about everything. I felt like I was failing (more on that in a few days). I was on a rollercoaster of panic, anxious moments and really low moods. I was afraid of pretty much everything in front of me, and I was incredibly unhappy about all of it.
How could such a great thing turn into this? I would ask that every year, yet I would repeat the same mistake every year. The first 7-10 days of January was a mighty struggle. The whole world was in “new year, new me!” mode, but I had taken a giant step backwards. Everything - including my own emotional state - was a challenge. By January 10, I would be exhausted just from trying to get back to my “normal” state of anxiety and avoidance.
That was simply no way to live.
If you’re struggling today like I used to struggle back then, know that you’re not the only one and that it doesn’t have to be like this forever.
This is not the worst day of the year for me any more. Things are different now. As we launch The Anxious Morning together today, I am hopeful that if I do a good job and things work out just right, maybe I can contribute to things being different for you too. Maybe today will be your last “worst day of the year”.
I’m so glad that you’re here at the start of The Anxious Morning. I’m excited about what we have ahead of us.
Tomorrow morning we’ll ask the question, “Does the ultimate panic attack exist?”