I am scared of:
- Numbers. I discovered the Fibonacci sequence today, and for the first time, I truly understood numbers. I don’t know why I understood it, or why what was previously a jumbled, confused mess to me suddenly made sense. Still, I can’t see most numbers without panicking. Percentages and decimals send me into a panic; I simply can’t process them. It’s like dyslexia with numbers. I’ve tried, so many times. Others have tried to teach me. My brain simply doesn’t want to know. Until I was in my 20’s, I was too scared to pay for something in a shop, in case I got the money wrong. I’ve only just stopped counting my bus fare over and over, to ensure I’ve got the right amount.
- Crowds. Specifically, a crowded area with no clear exit. Depending on my mood, I can sometimes cope with a crowed room as long as it has large windows and a view outside. Other times, I simply can’t go through with it. I’ll panic, sweat, cry and, when it becomes too much, run.
- Making an idiot of myself in public. I know most people have this fear, but I don’t think everyone takes it to the degrees I do. If I become aware of my mouth hanging open or a stain on my shirt, it sets off an uncontrollable sequence of events; I become horribly introverted, concentrating on that one tiny flaw. I become convinced that I’m the biggest idiot on the street, and that everyone around is judging and laughing at me. Logically I know nobody cares, but logic never works when I’m convinced I’ve ruined everyone’s day by being such a loser.
- Losing everyone I love, or simply losing the company of those around me. I live in fear of people turning on me, or ignoring me. Giving up on me. Talking about me behind my back, yet smiling to my face. Being alone. Other people thinking I’m unpopular. I assume that stems from being so unpopular in school; everyone wants to be liked, and I can’t seem to help taking it to extremes. Sometimes I become convinced that everyone I know hates me, even my own family. I used to panic and phone friends incessantly, begging reassurance that they still wanted me in their lives. The medication controls this, but the fear still lurks. I’ve ruined so many friendships and relationships, simply by being terrified of loneliness.
- The future. I used to see the years before me as full of opportunity, yet life has taught me that nothing much ever changes. I’m terrified of ending up forever going in circles; an endless cycle of medication, doctors, breakdowns, arguments, freak-outs and losses. I’ve accepted that I’ll never be an astronaut or be able to run a marathon. I’ll never be society’s idea of normal. I’ll never quite feel ‘right’ in myself. I’ll always carry my life with me. With this acceptance comes an empty feeling. I’ll never be who I dreamed of being. My future is so uncertain, everything in my life hangs constantly from the thinnest of threads, and I’m always one step away from damaging everything.
- Letting everyone down. Regressing. Relapsing.
- Not relapsing. I’m afraid to stand alone, without chemical and emotional crutches. I’m scared of life without self-harm, without purging, without breakdowns, drugs and crises.
- Never being free of my childhood home, of my past.