NANOWRIMO vs. Anxiety

It’s November 26th and I’m supposed to have 43,333 words written for NANOWRIMO. Right now I have 23,619 words. Don’t get me wrong. That’s still amazing and works out to 908 words per day.  It’s just not where I’m supposed to be for the challenge that I signed up for.

I stayed on track with my word count until November 12th. Then I noticed a pain in my lower back and a full feeling in my left abdomen. It got worse throughout the week and I stopped writing because all my brain wanted to do was focus on the pain and all the possible reasons for it.

My anxiety causes me to obsess about one thing and go round and round in circles in my head until I’m exhausted. It consumes my thoughts and I can’t focus on anything else. Most times my anxiety is about things out of the ordinary with my body and how I’m going to die because of it.

What is this pain? It’s clearly a tumor that’s growing and growing and not going to go away. I should go to the doctor. But that’s going to require a bunch of tests. I won’t get to the bottom of it right away and it’s going to involve a lot of appointments and tests. By the time they find the tumor, it will be too late. They won’t be able to do anything about it and I’ll die. 

That’s just a fraction of the thoughts that go through my mind during particularly anxious moments.

I take little worries and make them real in my mind. It’s not what if I have cancer, it’s I definitely have cancer and it’s going to kill me. Oftentimes I eventually make it to a doctor and find nothing wrong or something much less serious.

This time around after a doctors appointment and two ultrasounds, nothing was found. It was determined that I had pulled or torn a muscle and that it should go away on its own. Sure enough, it’s gotten better as time goes by, especially if I lay down. My flights home for the holidays made it worse, but the pain is almost gone and it wasn’t a tumor.

Now that those anxious thoughts have gone away, I’ve started writing again. I’m trying to get as many words in as possible before depression hits or another round of panic strikes. I’m not sure I’ll hit the goal of 50,000 words this month, but I’ll be happy with 30,000 considering the kind of month I’ve had.

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