Five days a week I am good. Some of those days are better than others, some worse. All of them end poorly, they end at my house. My house, a place that use to provide safety and comfort, is now a place I hate being in. It is a place where my Anxiety hangs out, a place where it decides to throw dance parties. And the last two days of the week, Saturday and Sunday, I attempt to leave, but have nowhere to go. Nothing needs to be bought. It’s raining so no outdoor exercise. I’m trapped. No hopes of escaping for another year and a half when we move to get Sophia into a better school system for Middle School.
I despise going home. I feared it to an extreme a year ago. I would cry, in silence, when it was time to leave work. The darkness outside only mirrored the fear that grew within me. At home was where all the tension was. It was where all the noises were. It was where my children, my newly born annoyances, were. I didn’t want to go there. Bedtime, my Anxiety only grew. It was a Goliath. What noises would I hear tonight that would keep me awake? Would I hear coughing? Would Tyler wake me? Would Sophia wake me? Ugh, the heat just turned on… I just want to sleep. I NEED to sleep. All would be better if I slept.
Sleep didn’t come for a long while. I thought once Tyler was removed, I would return to my normal sleeping habits. Problem was although Tyler left, my Anxiety didn’t. It remained as strong as before. I was only growing weaker, submissive. Every morning, I woke up gagging when I opened my eyes. Every night, I shook out of fear of this house. This house, that my husband and I bought so our family could grow, so Sophia would have a yard to play in. This house I used to love so much.
I still hate it. It still hasn’t kicked out the one resident that was never invited to stay. That relative you so desire to leave but doesn’t. I force myself to go home. A bit easier now than a year ago, but I still need to force myself there. The nights are still full of Anxiety. I still take medication to subside it, but it is still there. There are no sounds from that bedroom right across the hall, only the residual ones that play in my head. The heat still goes on. The neighbors still come home late and slam doors. The dogs outside still bark to each other carrying on a conversation. And I still fear it all. I still sit wanting to plug up my ears. If only I didn’t hear all this.
I sleep with earplugs. I have for years. They go into my ears when I decide to roll over and sleep. Before that time my ears hear the sounds of the world while reading and watching shows on the Kindle. In addition, they hear the overwhelming voice of my Anxiety, that gripping annoying tone that forces you to listen. That is something the earplugs will never cover up. I just want to yell at it, to just shut up for once, to leave me alone. I want it to take a vacation, travel the world, but it doesn’t.
I turned everything off, put my earplugs in my ears and went to sleep. Tossing and turning, brain overloading with racing thoughts. Geez, just shut up already! I turn toward my clock, 45 minutes later. Ugh! Not again. Knowing I shouldn’t stay in bed, at least all those doctors say not to, I rise and go down to the basement. Laying down on the loveseat, with the cat curled into me, a throw on my legs, I watch a DVR’ed show. One more hour I’ll lose of sleep. So many hours wasted.
I’ve let me Anxiety in. I’ve embraced that it doesn’t want to leave. I’m so drained of fighting it. I give up. You can stay. You can keep me awake. You can do what you want to me. Just take away the fear of my home. Let me enjoy my evenings and weekends. Let me enjoy the occasional day or two with my family. Let me live again already. You’ve trapped me and I want my freedom. I want to have control again.