This is the face of social anxiety. 

I know it doesn’t look like it. 

And had you seen me, 10 minutes before this, you would call me a liar..right to this face of mine. Laughing, chatting, singing along with friends on a random Saturday karaoke night. But this is the aftermath that starts to set in. To be out, to get out of the house, into a car, into a party – it’s hard. 

Oh, I want to be there. If you are my friend, hear me now, please: I WANT desperately to be with you. 

This is just something inside me.

So, like forcing a ligament beyond its natural resistance, I become hyper-flexed, overexerted. In the end, I am exhausted. I am thankful I went out last night, thankful it was a good moment, thankful I made it out of the car. Sometimes? I don’t. 

Dealing with anxiety, is a process. It seemed to start out of nowhere and now I wait, prayerfully, for it to fade out again. 

Last night, friends told me that my face was so expressive that every thought was written there. It’s probably true: I cannot play poker, I cannot pull off a surprise. But make no mistake, there were a million feelings racing through my mind and speeding up my heartbeat last night. None of which showed on my face.

An epic battle waged inside, against self doubt and against the betrayer that my own “fight or flight” responses have become. 

But today I celebrate this face. It’s my battle weary look. Because I fought the battle. I showed up. I won. 

In the small victories, we win the war, right?

If you battle anxiety, as well, know this: I love you. I am praying for you. You are a fighter. 

-Skye, @faithnofilter

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