Sometimes I can't breathe.

Sometimes I can’t breathe.

It’s not the tightness that comes from being too close to the lilies. Or being exposed to mold. It’s deeper. Deeper to the point that I wonder if it has an end. And it hurts. And the more I try to concentrate on breathing deeply and slowly, the faster my heart beats – I envision a hummingbird – and the tighter my throat gets.

It’s your fault. Well, not your fault that my body’s reaction to anxiety is that of a mild heart attack, but your fault that my reaction to you is anxiety. I don’t think it was always t his way, but I really can’t remember. The person who my memory must have fabricated cannot be the same person causing me to shake like this.

To say I’m afraid of you is inaccurate. I’m not. My body may rumble with the anxious anticipation of your next unexpected move, but I’m not afraid of you. Perhaps it’s the unknown. It’s the need to engage every sense and gage every response to you that causes my body to go on overload.

Stay calm, stay calm. Don’t say the wrong thing. Don’t attack back. Don’t look away. Watch your body language. Don’t instigate. Don’t say what you are thinking.

Yes. That’s it. It’s the transformation my body must go through to endure our every exchange, however mundane.

I’m done. I want to be able to breathe. I deserve to be able to breathe. The trembling is frightening and exhausting. The fear of one day believing that I am what you say rocks me to the core.

My body is reacting.

It’s walking away.

I’m done.


  1. "The fear of one day believing that I am what you say rocks me to the core."

    Thank you for submitting this. It speaks deeply to me and, I am sure, to many others as well.

  2. Wow. This is intense. It's definitely spoken to me.

  3. I can relate to you so much here! I have trouble with anxiety and have often pleaded to God or whoever's up there to just help me breathe. I'm imagining that the person you're referring to is your significant other...for me, it's my boss that makes me so anxious.