Honestly, I’m not sure I really want to publish this post now that it’s written; so fair warning, it may well end up being part of my fairly small group of previously-published hidden posts soon. But at the same time, I think I needed to vent like this, and I haven’t blogged for a while because of exams and kinda feel like I should explain why I didn’t rush back to the blog as planned once I’d finished. I promise I’ll be back writing proper posts that aren’t just pathetic-whining-about-my-life really soon, though – there’s an outline sitting in my drafts already!
Nope. First comes the initial panic. Nope nope nope nope nope nope nope. But funnily enough, repeating “nope” and other stronger words to the screen does nothing to change it. The internal panic button has already been pressed. Fine then. It will come, and it will pass, and everything will be okay. If I know it’s coming, I can prepare.
So that’s me for a few days; knowing it’s coming, knowing I have to do all in my power to avoid it, and knowing that avoiding it isn’t possible – but at least I can plan ahead. The days stop having names and start having numbers, and everything’s leading up to a peak. I prepare for the event, cramming all adulting tasks into the space before it arrives, making sure the clothes with materials I’ll tolerate are clean and I’ve got in enough food I’ll be able to make myself eat. I joke to myself that I feels a bit like a hedgehog preparing for hibernation, except with absolutely awful timing (hence the post title – a word I never seem to think of at the time). In the early stages, I push through the anxiety and the sensory overload as much as I can so that when it really begins, I’m ready. Part of me knows that I’ll never be ready enough, though; it just inherently makes me panic and it already has, and the fact that I’m already not handling it terrifies me.
…And usually, that’s it. The End. Everything is okay. The only thing that brings me down at all is my own silly irrational terrified brain, which I spend the next little while beating myself up over because how can I still be this pathetic. The reality doesn’t match up to the Absolute Worst that was in my head.
Except, of course, for when it does – and I think I’d forgotten how that really feels.
I woke up at 6am yesterday morning, and time had slowed to a crawl as the world around me warmed up at an alarming rate. There was one last bit of admin which I couldn’t get under control in time, but I was with a friend, we were going early and we didn’t have to go far so I was feeling positive. I psyched myself up for The Outside World with music and selfies. It went really well. Within an hour of that, all the air around me seemed to disappear and sensory overload was setting in and I felt sick. The cool-shower-and-a-nap plan maybe sort of made everything okay for about half an hour. I spent the next five or six snail-pace hours hovering over full-scale-meltdown point, wanting desperately to be unconscious but not being able to sleep, or eat, or think straight, being fully aware that I was lucky to have just finished exams beforehand and to be able to hide away and not have to be a fully functioning adult and feeling absolutely pathetic because clearly other people have more to deal with and yet are dealing with it so much better than me, taking an hour to type out a simple gift message because I kept freaking out and moving away from the laptop and rocking and clawing at my neck and shoulders because icantbreatheandeverythingsburningandnothingidoismakingitstop, and when it began to slowly ease off, that turned into slightly more articulate-able panic about whether the storm would come or whether I’d be stuck in this mess for a day, an hour, a second longer. Then there was a really loud downpour, and then everything was okay. Today, I’m a bit post-meltdown-drained but those feelings are starting to fade now, and everything is okay.
Well, except for the reminder of why I’m so ridiculously afraid of a little screen full of big numbers in the first place.