Anxiety is a thief.
It will steal parts of life away from you.
It will consume your time with fear and chaos.
Before you know it, many good things get ransacked with fear, doubt, and shame. It’s not the kind of life anyone wants to live.
BUT, there is hope.
Anxiety might have stolen a lot from you already, but I’m here to tell you that it’s possible to start reclaiming it back.
WHAT ANXIETY STOLE FROM ME
There is one thing that we can’t get back on this side of Heaven, and that is time.
Time flies and before you know it we’re another year older and so are our children. Nothing made this more apparent than becoming a mother. That’s why it’s important to spend our time wisely- with the people we love and doing the things we love.
The better part of the first three years of motherhood was early stolen by anxiety and PTSD. Three years of a healthy relationship with my husband, connecting with others, being a mama to my son. It also stole my confidence in myself, the world around me, and even in God. It stole parts of my physical and emotional health, and if it wasn’t for the support of my close-knit tribe and sweet drooling baby keeping me anchored to this earth, it might have stolen life.
Anxiety, and PTSD that was connected with it, nearly stole motherhood from under my feet. Debilitating mental and emotional health overshadowed life with darkness, fear, shame, hopelessness. I battled panic attacks and crippling mental blocks. It was sheer survival mode. The early memories with my first and only son are fuzzy and that’s not just because of the lack of sleep. The emotional and physical trauma that contributed to poor mental health plagued me. It all stole precious time away from me and my new baby. I felt cheated out of the newborn stage as I navigated through all that comes from birth trauma, postpartum, and this new scary world of anxiety. I felt robbed of those early milestones.
People might have seen my social media feed filled with tiny moments and cute baby photos, but what they didn’t see was me compulsively checking my pulse and counting breaths. They didn’t see the insomnia or consistent break downs that often came out of left field. They didn’t see all of those precious moments stolen from me every.single.day in between the torment and the fear. I was new to the whole anxiety thing and it was miserable.
I’ll never get that time back. This sobering thought could keep me locked in depression, tossing all of my “WHYS” up to the heavens, or it could motivate me to do something about it. While I believe my God can redeem the time and heal, I have to be willing to show up and do my part. I got really tired of having things stolen from me and became determined to reclaim whatever I could back.
If you’ve ever battled the beast of anxiety, I’ll bet there have been plenty of things stolen from you. Your passion, your joy, your health, your emotional well being, time with your family, the ability to bond with your children. Now’s the time to say “enough!” and start to reclaim all you can. It’s time to do everything in your power to prevent anxiety from stealing any more from you. You have more power than you might realize.
Reclaim your mental health. Reclaim your physical well being. Reclaim motherhood. Reclaim your life. Reclaim YOU, my sweet friend.
WHAT I’M DOING ABOUT IT
The fact that anxiety stole so much from me could make me very angry or wallow in grief….and it sure used to. I’ve lost count of how many jars of tears I must have stored up in heaven over the stolen time with my son and family. But I’ve got a new reality- anxiety won’t keep stealing my life away from me if I don’t continue to allow it to. Even if it takes a lifetime to manage, I can make it that much harder for anxiety to take what I love from my hands and from my heart.
Enough is enough.
I punched fear in the face and became passionate to reclaim my life. I wanted it bad enough. I can’t get back the time that was stolen from me. However, I can re-purpose the pain and prevent more from being stolen. I long for that for anyone that’s struggling with anxiety.
It might look different than I once expected, but this life is MINE. This life if YOURS. And it’s ours for the taking and the taking back.
This, my sweet friend, is why I’m here.
In 2016, when I was in the middle of survival mode, I remember telling (probably screaming at) God, “If I have to walk through this so others don’t have to, fine”!
I swore that if I made it out alive, I’d do what I can to help others out of the pit. While that was said in a season of disappointment, it was the truth. It’s still the truth now, though in a healthier and more resilient kind of way.
I know a God that truly binds up the brokenness and ushers in healing, but we have to be willing to take responsibility for our own healing process.
I hope, I pray, that my pieces create a road-map to inner healing for others. A guide to reclaiming what’s been stolen from not just me, but from you.
What are you ready to reclaim? I can’t wait to cheer each other on!
PS- If you haven’t already, go on and subscribe to the ReclaimingNow newsletter! I’ve got a little somethin’ for you if you do! I look forward to sharing exciting updates and news along this journey with you.