Tonight is the first night in a week where I haven’t taken some sort of pill to suppress the debilitating anxiety that has taken over my life. Is this improvement or the illusion of reassuring myself that I am not addicted to Xanax or Ativan or little blue sleeping pills? The feeling in my chest hasn’t left yet, though; it’s always there like a birthmark I forget about until I disrobe for bathing or a memory I don’t remember until I’m alone and hopeless. The freshly painted meringue walls help, I suppose, but eventually, I will have to return to the plain white ones and I’m afraid those walls, that house, has caused all of this. My mother, my boyfriend, my doctors, and countless comments on the Internet believe it to be hormones brought on by the ill-conceived decision of my piss-poor HMO to change my birth control without notice, but why this, why now? I want to be pure, to be free of medications and addictions, but is it really so wrong to drift off to normalcy each night with the help of a little yellow, white, or pastel red pill? All I can see around me are people who seamlessly have their lives together and are able to get out of bed, exercise, go to the market, to concerts, and to work all without batting a fucking eyelash, and maybe a fraction of them are actually capable of doing those things. However, how many of them have been analyzed and prescribed with some mental health cocktail so they can portray the illusion of being normal, of being happy? How many of them are lying to me, to the world, that they are fine and not at all fucking terrified of getting older, and losing all of the ones they love, and one day dying? Please, I am begging you, how many of them are there really?

I knew this day would come eventually, but that was before the numbers on my biological clock struck the big ol’ three-zero. I thought I was young and free; I honestly thought I would live forever. And yes, I get it, the fucking criticisms and snickering, I realize I am not technically old yet, but I am also neither a fucking kid anymore, nor a teenager, not even a twenty-something year old who can stay out late wearing ripped jeans and drinking like the hangover won’t last for two days. I’m at a stand still where I am expected to settle the fuck down and accept the mundane life before me, but I can’t, I just can’t and that is honestly, probably, where all the anxiety and panic attacks and paralyzing stress comes from. I want so much more out of life and it feels like it’s already over.