Holiday Collapse

I’m on holiday. It’s bliss. I’m in a logwood cabin in the middle of nowhere with a friend and our combined four dogs, no humans in sight or sound (although the deer are another matter), and a mountain right in front of us. It is peaceful and quiet. We are in a paddock surrounded on all four sides by native bush, and the driveway into this place curves around a bend so we don’t see the working farm we’re on.

I’ve had my full day of rest, and now I have anxiety bubbling up in my chest, causing my shoulders to hunch and my feet to twitch.

This always happens when I’m on holiday. I have a couple of days where I’m blissed out, and then I get smacked in the face with all the generalised anxiety I’ve been living with and/or ignoring and/or dissociating from since my last holiday, and I spend a couple of days just spinning. It’s a necessary, if annoying, part of my Holiday Collapse. At least I usually manage to avoid getting horrendously sick when I’m on holiday, like I know a lot of other people get.

It’s important, when this happens, to let yourself feel. I’m terrible at this. I don’t like feeling negative things, and I actively avoid them. So when something like this happens I have to concentrate really hard on unclenching my chest and stomach and allowing myself to experience the anxiety, instead of trying to fight it off. It’s not unlike lancing an abscess – you gotta let it all out, and you can’t do that by clamming up!

Despite the fact that this happens every single time I go on holiday, I’m always taken by surprise. It’s silly, really, but there you have it.

And now I’m going to return to my distraction and relaxation attempts. Hopefully this is just for today, I don’t have long this holiday!

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