All of me #8

mar 7Today I’m going to a wellbeing workshop focusing on stress and anxiety.

I want to know more about the physiology of anxiety and I want to know why my particular anxiety is manifesting itself in the ways that it is.

Since Dustin, the idea of kissing someone set off my nausiety that I had finally gotten under control. I was doing a lot better. I still couldn’t go to the pool though (I couldn’t cope with the anxiety of being either wet or cold), but then I ran a half marathon during an extreme cold warning. My anxiety was being choosy and I wanted to get to the bottom of it.

There are 14 of us, 13 were women. All three presenters are women. That’s because women like group sharing more than men one of the presenters offers.

All the participants share that they currently suffer from anxiety to some extent. All of these women are incredibly accomplished. They are intelligent – some of them pursuing their doctorates. They are career-oriented. They are articulate. They speak multiple languages. The facilitators are young and knowledgeable. They are all cooperative – and speak openly.

I’m surprised, although I don’t know why. I’ve been spending time with a lot of strong women lately. It feels good.

It feels normal. And with all of the sharing – even my anxiety feels normal. It starts to feel less isolating. All sorts of women – and men too – are going through what I am going through. But the facilitators are offering useful, scientific knowledge – I am not being “man-splained” to – and that also feels normal.

I wish this environment was normal all the time.

Light bulbs are going off left and right, as I learn what triggers anxiety and how to identify stress. I can look at my situation globally, non-judgmentally, and in a way that doesn’t colour it with my gender. In a patriarchal society, I’m always looking at my anxiety as something unique to being a woman. When gender is removed from the equation – I can look at my anxiety as just existing with no shame.

And there’s no one I have to answer to about it.