My favorite part of my General Anxiety Disorder has got to be the helping hand it lends to my imagination, especially in the sheath of darkness and night. One moment I’m counting friendly, fluffy sheep, and the next I’m frozen in fear, horrified by hallucinations and scenarios that appear vividly in my visual cortex. Sometimes though, the ordinary image of my family being ripped to shreds by zombies after watching too much of The Walking Dead begins to bore me- made mundane in its nightly repetition. Even if I’m lying in bed next to a partner, I don’t reach out to wake them to comfort me; unconsolable, it is easier to let your reveries run wild. Besides, spiraling into a wormhole of fear is best felt alone, in the fetal position. Because, dear reader, we know you empathize, we have compiled a list of terrifying thoughts to mull over while you lie down in bed next to a lover, in a temporary paralysis, waiting for your xanax to kick in and a morning that seems shall never come.
- When will this thing end or-gasp!-will you stay together forever, get married, and stretch your precious vagina to the point of no return popping out his spawn? Either option is terrifying, as you realized months back when you finished the final episode of Master of None, stunned by its brilliance but scared shitless of its realism in relation to your young life. There are only two ways any relationship can go, to end or be eternal. Do you want to marry him? Do you even want to get married at all, ever? But if you did stay with him that long, wouldn’t you want to be married for your kids’ sakes? For tax purposes? What if this it it? Are you happy with that? Yes, yes you are… or do you only think you feel happy? How do you know if you’re truly happy or just on the cusp of some sweet delusion? Will you marry him and lead a seemingly satisfying life only to meet another man 20 years in who shows you what real love is? What if this isn’t it? When will it end, sooner or later? Which one is better- are you just waiting it out? Will you crumble into a thousand tiny pieces, never able to love again? Who will end it- him or you? If you, will you regret it, beg him to take you back because you’re a stupid, silly woman who doesn’t know what she wants? Will you thrive? No, no optimism here in the cold, raw clutches of the pitfall betwixt sunset and rise.
- If he died right now, what would you say at his funeral? Would the family let you speak? If you succumbed to the sly hands of the god in which you no longer believe, would he speak at your funeral? Would he keep in touch with your family, tell his future children about you, warn them of the morose, ephemeral, rapturous nothingness that is this human life? Or, would he expunge all memories of you from his mind like a misdemeanor from a minor’s rap sheet, free and unscathed in his pursuit of happiness, prosperity, and longevity?
- Imagine you’re pregnant right now. If you’re just days away from an oncoming flow fest, even better. Have you been feeling sick in the mornings, or are those just hangovers? Is your skin looking unusually clear for this week of your cycle, or is it just your newly implemented honey and cinnamon face mask routine? Of course you’re pro choice- but could you do it? How would you pay for it- would he, would you split it? Is this kind of thing covered by insurance? Would you tell your parents- just your mom, just your dad, both? Where would you have the procedure done- here, in this city, or would you want to go home, by way forcing you to tell at least one parent? Would you want him to drive you, or your best friend in town, or would your childhood best friend need to drive down for a Friday appointment? How far along are you- exactly what procedure would be done- can you choose, is there anesthesia involved? Of course you’d never keep it, but what if you did- would he be the parent to make the major decisions, or would it be a united front? Psych yourself up- of course you’d do it, you have a career to think about, not to mention the damage that would already be done by your heavy drug and alcohol intake in the last few weeks (read: years). Olivia Pope did it, Clare Underwood did it, The Obvious Child is one of your favorite movies, you’re a strong, powerful female with the mental wherewithal to go ahead and-but wait! No, you tell yourself, hush, you’re not pregnant, it’s fine… but are you?
- Naturally, both sets of your parents will someday perish. Will it be his or yours first, and when? Soon, in a shock that reverberates so strongly through your body that it stupefies you, liquifies you into a lukewarm cup of primordial soup, just a heap of proteins? Or, later, a sluggish sojourn to the end- painstaking, but bringing relief at its conclusion? How will he comfort you, will you be inconsolable? How will you comfort him, are you capable of that kind of support? Will he retreat into depression, will your suicidal fantasies return? You do just love the ending of The Awakening. Will you be waving from the sea, or will you be drowning?
- If you’ve forgone your nightly bar and have instead opted for the nonbenzodiazepine equivalent of fleece, ambien, these subjects may be too profound; you need something more succinct before you are lulled into a chemical respite. And so, I leave you with some simpler questions: should you be investing in the stock market? How do you even buy stocks, from who, and where? How many spiders have you swallowed in your lifetime, will there be oral arachnid intruders tonight? Are you going to develop dementia, have you already? Can that be latent? When will it begin to affect you? Has it already, but you just don’t remember? Do you have a drinking problem, or are you just an aspiring screenwriter and stand-up comic with a satire focused WordPress account?
What a sensual, cruel mistress this life is. Sweet dreams!