I know you because I am a part of you, even though you can’t physically see me. When I’m in action, I permeate every part of you…your mind, your body, your heart and your spirit.
It doesn’t mean that I’ll leave, because I can’t. Some of me is necessary…and ridding the rest of me? That’s entirely up to you. This is who I am to you:
I start as nervousness in your gut, then I become tightness in your chest, and work my way up to your throat until it’s hard to breath…until you start to panic, because it feels like I’m choking you.
I reside in between the last time and the next time you use. I’m the feeling, that horrible craving, where you want to jump out of your skin…where you feel raw, where every minute feels like an hour. That’s me. When you give in and take that drink or drug, I depart for a minute…and then I step right back in.
When I lose control, I get your attention by igniting your anger…your anger that you don’t understand…your anger you subconsciously use to regain control…the anger that ultimately loses your control and creates more fear, worry and shame.
I am the reason you cut or burn yourself. I am why you bite your nails or bite your lips, or tap your foot, or flex your numb limbs…I am why you twist your hair, pick at your skin, or crack your knuckles…I am the reason you simply can’t sit still.
I am why you keep checking your phone, or daydream, or multitask. I deflect you from being anywhere but here… from experiencing yourself in this moment. I am your uncomfortable edge you’re needing to take off so that you can disconnect. I am your need to run…your need to numb out.
I am the reason you are a fearful passenger in a car or that you panic on airplanes. I create imaginary disasters in your mind…and I’m a little embarrassed to say this, but I enjoy gaining your full attention in those moments of terror.
I am your need to face the door at restaurants, to avoid big crowds, and why you look over your shoulder when you’re taking a walk. I create your fear, your worry, your hyper-vigilance, and need to control. I am always guiding you to look one, two, even ten steps ahead…afraid of what lurks around the corner. I am why you see and are constantly afraid of the Big Bad Wolf.
…it’s to keep you safe from actual danger. I’m the one that stops you from walking into traffic, from stepping off a cliff, or from touching a hot flame. I’m the one that tells you to run from an angry lion or to leave an abusive relationship. That’s my true job…that’s my true purpose.
So, you see? I’m always here. I can’t leave.
Image retrieved from: thezenwarriorguide.com