I really wanted to write a blog post for you all today but I am, unfortunately, feeling too much anxiety to do so.

I kid.

This is a more personal blog entry today so please bear with me.

I’m fairly certain this fragile human body of mine is trying to destroy itself and my conscious mind along with it. If it’s not one problem cropping up, it’s another, and that’s a tough thing for me to deal with, due to my nature. I”m the sort of person, like many of you I imagine, that doesn’t wish to be defined by his problems or his illnesses. I want to be known for my strengths, for my independence, for doing something difficult on my own. The thing is, everyone needs help sometimes and I’ve come to realize, in the last week or so, that it isn’t shameful to admit when you’re having a difficult time.

I’ve never been physically strong or tough. I can’t bench press huge amounts of weight, I can’t run a mile without getting winded, never mind ten or twenty, and I definitely can’t handle pain very well. I am, however, a fairly intelligent person and I have always been emotionally strong and independent. Over the years, I’ve clung to the idea that what I lacked physically, I more than made up for by being this emotionally, spiritually, and intellectually grounded person, someone friends and family could rely on when they were having tough times but never someone that had issues of his own. In the last year or two I’ve been facing steadily worsening anxiety. It went from mild nervousness in larger social settings a couple of years ago to outright panic in simple job interviews now, which is pretty unacceptable. I thought, for a long time, that it was just something that would pass, that if I could just conquer some situations (conventions, PAX, job interviews, etc) I would somehow just get better at it and the anxiety would fade, but that hasn’t been the case.

One of the biggest problems with this sort of anxiety is that it keeps you from going to anyone for help out of fear and worry. I’m terrified of taking medicine, I rarely even take aspirin, so I think pharmaceuticals are probably out of the question, but I’m exploring alternatives. Facing your problems rather than denying them and pushing them into a corner is a big step.

I’d like to finally resolve this for myself and for my friends and family. I can’t tell you how much I’ve wanted to attend more conventions but how difficult it is to cement any plans when I feel completely ill just before I go to them. I’m a social person at heart, my conscious mind finds all of this absolutely ridiculous, but my body has its own agenda it seems. I know, in my mind, that everything will be fine when I go to these things, that it’s silly to feel this way, but sometimes you can’t help how you feel.

Sometimes you need a little help along the path of life.

I apologize for the very Livejournal nature of this post. I feel awkward just typing this up for people to read and I’ve rewritten it about six times, but Happle Tea has long been a kind of therapy for me and it has been a sharing experience since the beginning. The point of all this isn’t to bemoan my fate or to complain about my problems (clearly I see the humor in the situation), but merely to point out that everyone goes through some shit times at some point. Everyone needs a little help from time to time.

Our problems don’t define us, the way we handle them does.