Battling anxiety: When the sky turns gray


I’ve been in a bit of a funk. It’s the kind of funk that I can probably get out of quickly if I did something about it. But right now, I’m feeling very melancholy. It didn’t dawn on me why I was feeling this way until I looked at the date. September 10th. Now I know why the skies have turned gray. But I won’t let myself go there because that triggers a whole other mess.

September 11th has been an emotional rollercoaster for me since that dreadful day in 2001. I’ve never talked about that day with you, but I’ve talked about my anxiety in the past. How it’s the enemy that you keep close so you know how to handle it when it comes out of nowhere. I think the hardest part about these type of funks, is that we don’t let ourselves just be. I put on a happy face, make small talk as needed, and get everyone where they need to be. It’s when I am not taking care of myself that these episodes tend to happen.

I’m lucky in the sense that I have an amazing husband that knows this too shall pass. He knows to listen and not offer 100 different things I can do to make the feeling go away. That my mother recognizes the road I’m on and steps in to help me through it. And on this day I have flight attendant sisters that come together and the only words we share are “I love you.” And that’s enough.

There’s a huge part of me that’s ashamed when I feel this way. I am beyond aware of the amazing life I have and I think that’s what makes these days even harder to tolerate. But here’s the thing folks, we need to give ourselves a break. Recognize that it doesn’t matter how great your life can be, depression and anxiety can hold on tight to anyone. However, as hard as it is to see at the darkest times, there is always a way out of it. I’ve learned my triggers. And I know that on 9/11 I will allow myself to remember, but not let it consume. But none of this would be possible if it wasn’t for the doctors and prescribed medication I needed to see the light again.

Just by writing this post, I’m taking small steps in making myself better. I’ve learned over the years that I can’t hide in shame. There’s nothing to be ashamed of. My mind just doesn’t always function as it used to before that September day years ago and I know it.