If you’re like me, you’re feeling HOLY CRAP IT’S THE FIRST DAY OF CLASSES AGAIN. My anxiety flares the hell up when I start classes for the first time, because I’m a scared little child. I woke up this morning with my stomach bubbly, a little nauseous, and suddenly I felt that panic feeling rising up in my torso. Alas, I managed to roll out of bed and get a bagel to appease my fickle stomach. Also I’m currently writing this before I’m even at class, but I was anxious and needed to type about it, get it out of my system I guess. I have class 10-1145 and 12-145, so I’ll be able to finish this and update you all on whatever my anxiety decides to do in the next few hours.
I HAVE EMERGED VICTORIOUS!!! Both my professors for today’s classes were fantastic, I mean one I took because I had him last semester and really liked the way he taught literature. Except this semester is all about literature of the gothic so SPOOOOPY HALLOWEEN IS NOW ALLLLLLLLLL SEMESTER!!!! I love spooky scary somethings.
My intro to psych class was what I was really worked up over, because I didn’t know anyone in the class and I thought I was the only senior in a sea of freshmen. Correction: I am one of TWO seniors in a sea of freshmen. However, that does not matter, because this class is gonna be awesome. My professor is so cool beans, and he tells bad jokes. Then instead of saying, “I’m kidding,” he says, “no, I’m being facetious”. IT TOOK ME FIVE TRIES TO SPELL FACETIOUS RIGHT BUT HE CASUALLY USES IT. But to the best news of the day, he literally started to class by asking if we all had that dread of starting school again and I was sitting there like, yeah, um, absolutely, I might throw up right now I’m so anxious. I mean I didn’t say that. I thought it. And it was like he read my mind!! Because then he started talking about how he did too, and then how introverted people just need time to recharge if they’ve been social for a while, and THEN dropped that he was a clinical psychologist, so he’s a therapist like the one I see, and THEN it got so good I’m gonna give his next words their own sentence!!!
Screw it, it’s getting its own paragraph. He was talking a bit about how anxiety is so super common and that the interesting thing was that feeling physical anxiety was actually the same physiological experience as being keyed up and excited for something super fun. Translation: the way my body panics and my stomach drops and rolls like an eighties dance instructor is the same reaction I get when I’m excited to o on a roller coaster. The difference is your mind telling you if something’s good or bad. That’s pretty cool to know. But then he took it a step further and said in those moments what he likes to do is tell himself, “Hey, maybe my body is just confused and I’m just excited”.
It’s almost like tricking your brain to trade in physical dread for excitement. This is actually kind of like a thing Tom Hiddleston said once, about how he tries to turn his nerves into excitement. And he’s always smiling. Hell, after he had that torrid and horribly embarrassing fling with Taylor Swift he’s got no problem going around smiling with some nice facial hair and a haircut and damn he actually looks pretty good for a dude who got caught up in that Kim K and Taylor drama. Damn he even won a Golden Globe afterward, and even then, he had a moment where his nerves got the better of him, as his speech was clumsy as hell and kind of self-indulgent sounding. So see! Even Golden Globe winning people have ways to deal with anxious thoughts, and even though those methods don’t always work, it doesn’t make you less of a person. In Tom’s case, he apologized and realized that yeah, my speech wasn’t super great, and that’s all. Then he moved on.
I had a point here, but sorry Hiddleston drama is always juicy to me. I love that weird clumsy-yet-eloquent British dude. My point is, that advice isn’t going to solve my problems, just help me figure out how to deal with them better. As my professor put it, he’s a shrink, but he hates the word shrink. He’d prefer “expander” (also one of his terrible jokes) because he doesn’t shrink people’s problems, but expands their thinking about said problems. THAT’S SO FREAKIN COOL. HE HAS REALLY AWESOME WAYS OF PHRASING THINGS. Even better, this is something my own therapist loves touching on, that she’s there to help me build a cohesive and working toolbox. We try out different tools (coping mechanisms) to see if they work for me, and if they don’t we discard them, and if they do we keep them around for future repairs that may be needed. In case you couldn’t tell, I live and breathe metaphors. I think in metaphors, and metaphors are the best way for me to understand the wild things going on in my brain at times.
And yes, that gif of Taehyung is like what happens when anxiety hits. But that’s okay!! Maybe anxiety sometimes takes me out, and not on a fancy date, oh no. But that’s okay, because there’s always recovery. We come back looking just as fabulous and sexy like Taehyung does. BE LIKE TAE!!!!