Thursday, March 23, 2017

# anxiety # conversion disorder

Questioning Me Part 2

Last post I left off with the conversation that I had with myself on the drive home after a busy day. Today, I want to tell you about what happened after that....

I came to the conclusion that I think I knew all along. Once I cut away all the insecurity and all the garbage surrounding the truth, there it was waiting for me. It wasn't anyone's doubt in my abilities but my own. He didn't use me (or anyone else) because he didn't feel he needed to. He had the confidence in his work that I never seem to have in my own.

The review on Amazon for the book that I worked on with Nick was harsh but it was true. I didn't give the book the attention it needed on what should have been its second to last pass through. As I worked on the book, Nick repeatedly told me that it needed more of me in it and after taking the time to process the review, I think I finally understand what he meant. I tweaked his story but I didn't add to it. I didn't change it. It's still Nick's book with me making the most minor of changes, things that most people wouldn't even notice when reading it.

By the time I pulled into my driveway, I was completely calm and at peace with the situation. I had hope that no longer feeling the panicked anxiety that I had failed Nick on book 1 would allow me to get back to work on book 2. Wednesday is supposed to be my writing day, you see. It's the day that I have 3 hours set aside to do nothing but write. Except, that isn't what happened...

I looked at my bag where my writing notes live. I looked at the folder icon on my laptop. I did both these things but I couldn't go further than that. I was suddenly overwhelmed by exhaustion. I decided that perhaps the time had come to lay down and explore these feelings and to try to get to the bottom of the situation. Except, the oddest thing happened...I laid down on the couch, stared up at the ceiling and started working my way through things. What was the cause of the anxiety? That part was easy...

1. I "failed" at book 1. While people seem to like it, I didn't do my job to the best of my abilities and I let Nick and myself down in that.

2. Book 2 is supposed to be far more me. Nick has made that clear when we've talked about it. This book isn't supposed to just be me tweaking. It's supposed to be me adding things to it, changing it, and when I finish this book, I'm supposed to write a third book all by myself. I'm terrified of book 3. I don't know that I can do it.

3. See author in quotes triggered my ptsd. It brought back every moment when I was told that I couldn't do something and/or wouldn't ever be anything.

Except, as I laid there, I wasn't feeling any of the anxiety. I was laying there, completely clear minded as I went over everything in my mind. Finally, I asked myself one question, telling myself that whatever my first answer would be would be what I trusted. I asked myself, "What are you supposed to do?" and without second thought, I answered "Write book 2." I had total peace and no insecurities, no indecision, just peace that this is what I was meant to do.

What does this mean? Well, it could be a few things...

1. The anxiety over working on the second book may not be true anxiety but something I've taught myself. The only way to get over it will be to force my way past it and to just pull out the notebook, to open the file and and do something. It won't be easy but it will be something I do.

2. I've acquired a form of ...numbness when it comes to this. This happens to me in high anxiety/stress situations. I don't realize just how badly things are affecting me until I have some sort of physical manifestation of the stress. This first started happening to me when I was 19. It's called conversion disorder and it's not much fun. For me, it's happened different ways...I develop a cold spot in my chest, my hands go cold, one time I had a pain that raced down my left arm and for 3 days, my hand on that side was pins and needles as if I'd slept on it.

3. I have finally, on some level, accepted that this is what I'm supposed to do. I'm supposed to write. I have stories to tell and I'm supposed to tell them.

If I really have to say, I'd say it's a combination of all three. Knowing that gives me power though. It means that the next time I have the chance to pull out my files and notebook, I will take a deep breath and I will pull things out. It may take me a couple of attempts to actually start working again on the book, but  I will start working on it again. I have an April 30th deadline. It won't be done by then and that's okay.


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1 comment:

Dawn's Blog said...

You're so talented, I know that you can do whatever you set your mind to do. I have full confidence in you.

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