Lately, most days are pretty good.
I like my job, love my wife, am proud of my kids. All is right in the world.
Then there are days like today. I still like my job, love my wife, and am proud of my kids. I couldn't point at anything *wrong* in the world. And yet...
And yet I feel the darkness creeping in, clawing at the edges of my patience and peace of mind. I feel quivery and nervous and am afraid to tell anyone about it. To be honest, it's taking most of my will to commit it to text, but I've learned enough over the years to know that sharing will help.
The day started simply enough. Not spectacularly, but simply. I was running a little behind but got the kids off to the bus on time. Unfortunately, the few minutes that it took to get myself out the door meant traffic was backed up on the freeway. I arrived at work later than I wanted. Not late, because I am lucky enough to have a job where what I do matters more than exactly when I arrive to do it.
Waiting for me were two requests from good clients. You know the kind: the ones who work with you and don't go out of their way to cause fire drills. They shouldn't have been enough to trigger any stress, but they did. But I know myself pretty well at this point, and I took a deep breath and dove in rather than letting the threatening anxiety shut me down.
I went for a walk at lunch - treated myself to a favorite dining spot - but the crowds drove me to an alternate location. I knew I needed to be alone to try to re-focus to get through the afternoon. It helped, a bit.
As the day has continued, I have been making good progress, providing good service to my customers, but the specter of fear keeps getting darker. My head is aching, and I feel the muscles in my neck, shoulders, and back tightening. I need to remember to breathe. I just want to cry, but there's still work to do.
I *will* get through the day. I will *not* give in to the fear. I will get home safely to my wife and family. And I will try to hold it together until the kids are off to bed.
I'm supposed to go over to a friend's place tonight for our regular Thursday gathering. But I don't think I will. I think I will find somewhere safe in my house and call it a day. I know from experience that this will pass. I know time with friends could help, but I can't face the drive required. I just want to be done with the day.
Lately, most days are pretty good. Just not today.