The screwiness of me

stairs

Throngs of people filled the mall, each with no sense of urgency.  I managed to pass most them, politely saying “excuse me please.”  Some would ignore me; others would smile, and move out of the way.  I don’t handle crowds or shopping well.  My patience and anxiety were revving at high speed, but being a person who has suffered from abuse, I have a secret reserve of gutsiness to pull myself through situations such as this. The only problem is I believe my reserve tank ran empty when I reached the elevator.
The mall is a modern building, decorated in a slick style, even the Christmas décor was top notch. One would think that all their systems would be working.  I stood there in that top notch mall, fingers almost numb from the heavy shopping parcels. The elevator button is shiny and white, with a thin blue light.  It looked as though it should work, but I pressed, and pressed on it, after the third press I eventually accepted that the elevator was just not coming down.
Panic stricken, I headed for the shiny metal staircase.  My heart was pounding right up in my throat.  I knew I had to control my breathing.  Slowly, I started climbing the stairs.  The first flight of stairs was ok, but then the next flight and the next flight…  I heard a voice behind my say “don’t look down if you are scared,” but I had to look down each every time I placed a foot on the next step, or I might have lost my balance.  A very old memory flashed through my head; father said to my mother “look how stupid she is, she can’t even climb up stairs, she crawls.”
I wanted to crawl up the stairs at that moment.  The tears of frustration were stinging just behind my eyes.  My state of mind is not good at this time of year, and small things like this just exasperate my mood. When I reached to top, I wanted to be sick, I could hardly breathe.  I said I wanted to be sick, but the person with me said I was being over dramatic.  Today, the combination of anxiety, and a fear of heights totally floored me. It is these layers of anxiety which overlap with Major Depression that makes me most unlikeable and unlovable.
For: Weekly Writing Challenge
photo credit: Anikaviro via photopin cc
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52 thoughts on “The screwiness of me

  1. This is beautifully written Michelle. I’d like to think it is fiction but unfortunately, I’m probably wrong. By the way, I don’t see the unlovable, unlikable part of you at all….only someone with bountiful love in her heart and a passion for sharing it. Be blessed.

  2. Reading this brought tears to my eyes. I could feel the emotion building as I read and I was so wishing that elevator had been working. I have just recently found your blog and I am not a writer, but I can already tell you that I think you are an amazing writer. Your words are so descriptive I almost feel like I am right there with you. Have a wonderful day! Hugs

  3. I also hate open stair cases and could feel the fear and dizziness as you climbed to the top. I felt I was right there with you- had I been we could have held onto one another and talked through it. Hugs to you.

  4. A very moving account of your recent experience, Michelle. It is good that you are honest with yourself and courageous enough to share. This is half the battle won. People need to be more understanding and empathetic. All of us have different personalities and come from different backgrounds. You may interpret that you are unlikeable. But from what I read many of us have a lot of respect and care for you. Lots of love and hugs to you.

  5. I know the main issue of your post is not that the elevator was not working but that in itself makes me angry… Doors that are supposed to be automatic and aren’t and if I’m in a scooter it’s most annoying…. In any case it’s so understandable that your mind would go back to your father saying that ….. but our minds seem to do that…remember those things that had such an impact on us……. especially the negative ones… I’m so sorry you had to go through it… Diane

  6. Do not say unloveable! You are a caring, sweet, creative person, which we all love get to know a little bit through your blog. You do happen to have issues with some things, like open stairs, which has nothing to do with you as a person. I am sorry though that Christmas shopping and other “could be lovely” moments of your life, has to be lived with that black shadow and those ugly memories overshadowing the joy. Love, Solveig

  7. My heart connects to yours in this one… however, when I see and read your blog, there is nothing unlikeable or unloveable – I see a brave woman who faces the challenges of her life as best she can in each moment. I see worthwhile and precious human.

  8. I felt for you in this piece. I haven’t suffered a panic attack to-date but have come close to totally losing it because of crowds, impatient people, heat and rudeness. I can imagine this situation. No wonder shopping is not a good experience.

  9. so sorry you went through this trying to get the things you needed or thought someone else may want and then to be told not to be silly when clearly a panic attack is far from that. I say shop on line, or just give gift cards and if the comments were made by someone on your list COAL is the answer I have plenty if you need me to send you some 🙂
    HUGS

  10. I wish I could have been there with you Michelle. I hate shopping malls as well and know the feeling. Next time come and pick me up and we’ll drive them all crazy there…:D *big hugs*

  11. That was very well written, I could feel your emotions.
    Stuff like that doesn’t make you “unlikeable and unlovable”, it makes you brave and willing to face live regardless of your anxiety.
    Tell you what, if the staircase looked anything like the one in the picture I’d have a real problem – I hate that sort of staircase (I’m convinced I’ll fall through), but at the same time I’ll only get in a lift if someone forces me (and usually not even then). So I’d be stuck 🙂

    • Thanks for the understanding Dr Ali. I find that most people don’t understand these things, and that causes them to get irritated with me at times. As far as lifts and stairs, I prefer the escalator mostly, if there is one available.
      *Hugs*

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  14. I think I know how you feel. I offer you friendship and kindness and trust that you know how you inspire others Michelle? This is the worst time of year for me but together we all stand here collectively offering strength, hope, comfort and warm smiles. The photo conveys your words very well.

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  16. I hate malls at the best of times, Hope, and can understand your fear. I had a couple of panic attacks long ago. This piece is beautifully written and communicates your feelings so well. Congratulations on your conquering your fears that day. You are very brave.

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  18. So beautifully written. However, you are not unloveable. Please remember that.
    Just keep breathing and putting one foot in front of the other. Nobody needs to be expected to do any more than that.
    ((hugs)) to you

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Namaste. My soul honors your soul. I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides. I honor the light, love, truth, beauty & peace within you, because it is also within me. In sharing these things we are united, we are the same, we are one.

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