Sitting in a class of 100 some students.  Hearing the coughing, trying hard to block it out and listen to the professor. The sniffles that sound like they being blasted through megaphones into my ears; I could not escape.

Having an immune system deficiency, I fear these germs. I fear that sneeze from two rows up, and that cough into the hand that touches the same railing as me.  Some laugh and say I am anal. But hey, you sit up until 5 AM coughing your brains out.

So I let my fear play games with my head about a future I cannot control.  My mind drops its attention to class and switches its’ energy to my frightening surroundings. Pulling my sweater over my hands, hiding behind my oversized scarf, I get overwhelmed and struggle to catch my breath.  Stressed with confusion, Why am I letting this control me? If I get sick I wont be able to stay on top of my work, and go to class, and workout. Why am I stressing out over stressing out? Take a deep breath.

Closing my eyes, Inhale… Exhale… Inhale… Exhale. I open my eyes to a tear running down my face.  You’re so pathetic, why are you crying about being afraid of getting sick. You could have a way worse issue. Don’t be so selfish. Another tear drops, the clock strikes 1:25 and I run out of the lecture hall.

I B-Line for the only place I can be alone, I can fall apart, and put myself back together. The steaming hot, privacy of a shower. A long hot shower where my tears mix with the hot water raining down on me & the quiet sobs are just an addition to the music blaring through my speaker. Allowing my most vulnerable self use the shower walls be my backbone, and slide down to wallow in the warm rain cleansing my body mind and soul.

I pick myself up and rinse away my tears, they funnel down the drain.  I come out feeling alive and new; graciously, I can breathe again.

This is anxiety. This is one facet. This is not my choice, but it’s battle that makes me stronger.  Shower off your lows and your tears, and reinvent yourself until you create the you you want to be.

“God gives his hardest battles, to his strongest soldiers.”



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