When, every once in a while, my mind takes a life of its own and gallops out of control, I become a nutcase and lose all hope in the world. My bouts of overthinking and anxiety are longer and graver than most people’s, and many times my otherwise mundane problems have become exacerbated by futile over-analysis and problematization.
In the past, I’ve obsessed over a wide range of concerns: ambiguous romantic relationships, failed applications for other degree programs, and fundraising for alumni homecoming galas. I look back on those times with fondness, glad that they’re over and that I’m sane again. But sometimes I also remember them with dread, because I know how crazy I can be and how anxiety can consume me to the point of depression.
Now my latest episode is over an incurable disease. I am actually sick right now, and every time I sneeze I feel little bits of my life tear from me. Every bump, every undulation on my skin feels suspect. Every time I go online to read about it I almost immediately find symptoms on myself.
It offers no consolation that I actually need to wait before I can see someone about it. It’s a disease that waits, that never really shows itself, that, when you’ve finally calmed down and forgotten about it, pulls a fast one on you with a wide, malicious grin of a grotesque clown.
I don’t want to see that clown. I’m scared of him. But I think about him just the same. All the time.