Heather

What you see before you may seem like just another post from a “normal” person on your feed. Only people who have met me before know that I am probably one of the most socially awkward people they have ever met. I am the “weird”, quiet one, who should technically come with a warning label I am extremely shy, and have anxiety.

Anxiety is something that, unfortunately, has a stigma attached to it, and something that I have been teased about for as long as I can remember. Anxiety is a mental health condition, it is real, it is debilitating, and it can affect anyone. Those who suffer from it cannot always stop the anxiety, they can’t just easily snap out of it, and they cannot help what is happening to them.

At its very worst, I do sometimes have panic attacks, which make things really interesting for me and those around me. My panic attacks consist of intense fear, hyperventilating, accelerated heart rate, and the inability to catch my breath. Most of the time I can control my breathing and regain myself before the full attack overcomes me, but occasionally, it’s a full blown attack.

My husband? God bless that man, because he has been with me through it all, and knows what my triggers are and can bring me back from the brink with just his soothing voice. At its most mild state, my hands may tremble, I may stumble over my words, and my face gets flushed.

I am very insecure about my anxiety, and to me, it’s all people see when they look at me. Over the past couple of years, I learned to be myself and to try and not dwell on the fact that many people can’t see past my little quirks. Those who have taken the time to look past the social awkwardness are my true saviors, because they see past the anxiety and “weirdness” and they see me for who I am despite my anxiety. They see the beauty beneath all those other layers, and I love them for it.

I have come to the conclusion that this is how I’ve been since I was a child, and this is how I will always be. It takes a lot to admit all of this to the world, because I don’t want to be teased, I don’t want to be labeled, and I don’t want anyone to think that this disorder defines me.

Although it has taken awhile to get to this point, I realize that no one is perfect. Society may think they have an idea of what the perfect person looks like, but I know that true beauty means looking past the exterior, at what lies beneath. Those people who love others despite their differences to the “norm” are the true heroes, and those people are the reason I have come to embrace my own imperfections.

I have learned to love myself and accept the things that make me different. So, this is me, this is what people may not know about me, and this is me saying thank you to those who love me despite my imperfections. It’s taken me a long time to admit that I’m perfectly imperfect, but just by typing all of this out I’m feeling quite liberated.

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