I’m standing in a shopping centre on my own. My heart is racing, my chest is tightening. I can feel the anxiety pumping through my veins. I am biting my lip. I begin to check my phone constantly, I am not expecting to see anything but I need to distract myself. I need to try and forget where I am, what’s going on. I’m running out of breath, but I’m stood still. Are people looking at me? Can they tell?
I try to get out but I can’t find the exit, I thought it was the doorway out but when I get there I realise I was wrong. Everyone blurs as the tears glaze my eyes. I can’t see, I can’t breathe. I’m lost. I’m terrified. I follow the signs to the toilets and it feels like the whole world has slowed down as I’ve sped up. I’m not sure if I’m running or if it just feels like I am. I need air. I can’t breathe.
I go into the cubicle. Lock the door. My back slides down the door and I hold my head in my hands trying to breathe. I don’t notice that I’m crying to begin with. I just need air. I’m shaking. My body feels weak. I try desperately to regain control, to be the ‘normal’ person the world expects to see. I take some deep breaths, wipe my eyes, stand up and leave with a forced smile on my face.
If you are struggling with anxiety please seek help: