Soup or Salad: The never ending conundrum 

Since first starting this blog I’ve spoken a lot about my depression, my mood swings and my personality disorder, but I haven’t really touched on my most recognizable characteristic.

I am extremely, very, profoundly anxious.

When I tell people I have generalized anxiety disorder I usually get a puzzled look. “Aren’t we all generally anxious?”. Sure, yeah, of course. I can’t imagine though that the world would function properly if every one was as anxious as me. In fact, it’s amazing I haven’t demolished civilization all on my own with the amount of neuroticism I posses. See, I have a constant sense of foreboding. I don’t think it’s possible for me to name a situation or a concept that hasn’t made me anxious. If I momentarily can’t think of anything that I’m worried about, well gosh damn it that makes me anxious. I convince myself that there is absolute doom approaching and I’m just forgetting about it. You’re probably thinking I’m being melodramatic, no one can be anxious about everything ever. Well, after careful thinking I’ve finally been able to come up with an example that expresses how very anxious I am.

You know how some restaurants offer you the choice of soup or salad with your entree? Simple choice, right? Shouldn’t affect your life in anyway, correct? When I know I am going to a restaurant that offers me this straightforward choice (you see, I can’t go out to eat before carefully studying the menu a plethora of times in order to avoid the anxiety provoking notion that I won’t be ready with a choice when the waiter asks) I will agonize over the decision for days. I once spent an entire week constantly making pros and cons lists of choosing soup or salad. To this day I am still haunted by the anxiety that I made the wrong choice.

Yes, I know..it’s a fucking soup or a fucking salad. My brain doesn’t see it that way though. My friends, this is what it’s like for me having generalized anxiety disorder.

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12 Comments

Filed under Mental Illness

12 responses to “Soup or Salad: The never ending conundrum 

  1. i quit cold turkey on my citalopram that I took for over 3 years. It has been a roller coaster but i think i’m more happy now that i’m off it than I was when I was on it.

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  2. gophergold

    Then you finally choose salad, and the waiter asks what kind of dressing do you want.

    Finally, you eat the salad, and then think you should have had the soup instead!

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  3. Manic Cotton Candy

    I like this because I have no idea what it’s like to have GAD. I like this because even after I read this, I have no idea what it would be like and that is the worst worst worst part of mental illness. Unless you have seen it, either firsthand account as a sufferer or of someone who loves a sufferer, you have no fucking idea. I wish I understood what you went through, stay strong, go with salad :)

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  4. Making choices with anxiety can be extremely difficult. I completely feel for you.

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  5. I love how you express yourself! Great description of your experience with anxiety.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I used to be very anxious about things like this. For me a lot of it was projection of anxiety about other things, i.e. being afraid because I felt alone, didn’t know how to develop intimate relationships in friendship or love, not trusting anyone, being scared about the future and whether I would succeed in the adult world. The incredible uncertainty about everything that came out of my abusive childhood created a high baseline level of anxiety that was “on” all the time. It made me excessively worried about every little thing. But since I’ve become better and more trusting, worrying every small thing has decreased greatly and I’ve begun to feel a lot of peace. That can happen for you too. I also recommend things like hot baths, soothing music, and being in nature. They can be very therapeutic in helping you internalize a sense of being comforted that you may not have gotten as a child.

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  7. I always love the way you keep it real. I believe others with a Personality Disorder will take comfort in your deep explanations. Spilling your guts for all to see will help more than you know. Hearing the doctor or reading the internet doesn’t paint the real picture. Thinking of you.

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  8. savingmommyblog

    This is exactly how feel about every minute decision I have too make. Ordering at restaurants is no different. I usually decide before I go that I’ll just have coffee or something. Then I’ll cave and order almost anything that feels right. That, of course, leads to purging. So, now, I mostly avoid restaurants or any place where I have to make decisions, like grocery stores, department stores, anything like that.

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  9. Deciding on what I want always makes me nervous to. Especially if there is so much to choose from. Most of the time if I know a decision is made out if tension im going to find something, anything wrong with it later just by constantly mulling it over no matter how unimportant it may seem. I’ve been trying to force myself to ask myself questions though and that has helped at times. Like “so what if you made the wrong choice? What does that say about you? What was lost that you can’t get back? Can life go on despite this? ” and even though anxiety feels more somatic to me than anything, it does help me focus on something else. But i also can resonate with being so anxious you can’t even will yourself to think. That’s when all you can do is breathe. This post was really helpful to see what its like from your perspective! thanks for writing it:)

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