Today I went to a group interview. We did ice breakers, got to know each other. Went around the building giving impromptu speeches and presentations about random objects at the interviewers discretion. We had 5 minutes to prepare a presentation filled with metaphors on an ideal worker and present it. We had individual interviews, and then a break.
I went into the break feeling pretty good, I’d done well on the presentations, interviews and making up speeches on the fly. When our break was over, we went into a question period (think Jeopardy, but less fun and more drawn out.) The first question I was presented with went smoothly for the most part. But once we went around the table once and the spotlight was back on me, I couldn’t say a word. My mind was blank, and when I tried to focus on the question all I could see and hear was the numbing sound of a static television and a feeling of want to puke. The only thing I wanted to do was to get out of the small board room. However I pushed through and managed to push out the words “I’m sorry, my mind is blank and honestly I can’t find the words I want to say right now.” And so I passed on the question. When we finished another girl in the group comforted me with a hug, saying it was a difficult question, they’d understand if I fumbled a few times. In my silent frustration I resentfully continued with the rest of the interview.
I keep thinking about how even the tiniest bouts of anxiety are preventing me from enjoying things as much as I should at this age. Sometimes I think about how telling people what is happening at the moment truthfully would make things so much easier and gain an understanding for both sides. But the logic in me brings me to the undying belief that telling others about your problems makes them feel as one might when a drowning man is clinging on to them. You want to save them, but inside you know they will strangle you with their panic.
I do so much to avoid that shaking, horrible feeling. I used to be an avid coffee drinker, fueled by the quaking feeling of caffeine in the early morning at university, yet gave that up to avoid overshooting into a quaking, quivering anxiety. I know for a fact these feelings of anxiety, stress, anger, fear are not independent of me in this world. I know that if you rely heavily on medication to treat things such as anxiety or depression and do nothing to train the mind you are just as vulnerable to relapse as though you’ve never taken medication. I know the science of anxiety and its various attacks and what is happening to my body, and that its a passing. And while I do try my hardest to keep these in the front of my mind and put them into practice, some days I just don’t have the energy to, and allow it to empty the day of its strength.
“If I take death into my life, acknowledge it, and face it squarely, I will free myself from the anxiety of death and the pettiness of life – and only then will I be free to become myself.” – Martin Heidegger