How does it feel to have anxiety in a relationship?
It feels like the pain of your past is being folded into the joy of your future—and you’re left, somewhere in between, unable to grasp the present.
It’s blurring the line between that which is possible and probable, quietly fighting to uncover even the slightest crack in the most brazen of armours.
It’s the way you somehow always manage to find one; magnify it, expand upon it—allow it to justify the tidal waves of self-doubt as they build, bend and break to shore.
It’s your needing closure to that which you hold open.
It’s harboring a silent resentment over the hypothetical scenarios of your own writing, leaving them to play out on a manic loop—sparking a groundless sense of panic which swells and consumes all remaining sense or logic. It’s your questioning even the purist of intentions, deeming yourself forever unworthy—not only of that which you desire, but of that which you’ve already received.
It’s tripping over your own laces, tied voluntarily between each shoe.
It feels like you’re reading darkness from between the lines of a love letter—overriding any sturdiness to their voice with the familiar, wavering tones of all those you’ve heard before. It’s preparing yourself for heartache, despite it not being there; despite there being nothing to suggest it will be.
It’s the way you plant such damning evidence in amongst the unassuming beauty of everyday life; setting yourself up as victim and condemning those you love as criminal. It’s anticipating the emptiness to a glass currently full; the crumbling of a wall that remains standing—the eventual end to a feeling finally returned.
It feels like your time together is cultivated in the pause between words, in the keys between lyrics, in the moments which fall so silently prior to embrace—and those which lie so immediately after. It’s holding all the world’s certainty in the palm of your hand, and calling it out as chance—forever watching the shadows in the background, over that which is presented clearly in the fore.
It’s believing that heartbreak is, in the end, inevitable—despite your undying hope for the contrary. It’s allowing this belief to undermine all you think, say and do; setting an unforgiving pretext—leaving a bitter aftertaste to even the sweetest bite.
It’s not depression, nor is it insanity. I suppose, if anything, it’s a chronic inability to seize the moment; the ongoing struggle to play whichever cards you’re dealt, with quite the confidence you’re meant to.
It feels like you’re being relentlessly gripped by a maddening nostalgia; the kind which suffocates, the kind which preemptively falls from each and every moment—right as you’re in it, right as it passes.
For fear that each one—each kiss, laugh or unsuspecting smile—could be the last.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Emily Bartran