4.12.2016

the day I conquered my anxiety just so I could meet Jenny Lawson



For the last year or so my anxiety has been getting worse. It isn't social (thankfully), but it doesn't seem to have a cause. I have a horrible combination of a highly overactive imagination and far too much information in my head about all things that can go wrong. 

This being said, let me back up a bit. I'm going to roughly guess that I started reading theBloggess, written by Jenny Lawson, in 2009. In 2011 she published a book called Let's Pretend This Happened. I devoured it. I could see myself in her words. She spoke so openly about her various mental illnesses, and how she kept surviving everyday.

It was amazing to see all the things I felt written down on paper with such humor. It was a SOMEONE GETS ME!!!!! Kind of moment. I kept reading her blog in the intervening years.
Fast forward to 2015. Jenny released another book called Furiously Happy, further detailing her real life struggles, stories about her family, etc... Jenny announced a book tour and she was coming here. I was SO EXCITED. I finallyfelt like I had something to look forward to. But as the time got closer I started to dread it. I felt like I couldn't do it. But I knew, KNEW, that I would forever regret it if I didn't go.
The day before I was such a wreck. I couldn't sit still. I was a tightly wound ball of stress energy. But I went. We got up that sunday morning and went. I went in alone and got a seat, I waited almost 3 hours. As I sat there, hundreds of people began to file in around me. I was already tense but as the minutes dragged on I got shaky. I don't know if it was all me or if it was the energy of the hundreds of messed up misfits (she says proudly) that were crowded around me, but I was barely holding it together.
Jenny showed up and gave us a little speech a did a reading from her book. I cried gently the entire time. I cried for 3 hours straight. I cried with strangers, we hugged and huddled under jackets for safety. I waited my turn and got my books signed, had my picture taken with her, and handed her a letter I had written the night before, thanking her for all the things she didn't know she did for me. For all of us. I got a hug.
Then I went into the pregnancy section of the bookstore (not a plan, just only as far as I was able to make it) and had a breakdown. I sent my husband a text to come rescue me. I felt like I was going to throw up for another 2 hours.
But.
I did it.
I went.
I conquered my own crazy brain, if only for one day.
My profile pic is a raccoon mask with the words Furiously Happy on it. The raccoon is named Rory and he was on the cover of her book. We all got one at the signing. The picture is to remind me that I did something I was terrified of and I survived. That it's worth it to do scary things, to take the leap sometimes even when the voices in my head tell me I can't.

So.


Thank you, again, Jenny. I feel like I can't ever say it enough.

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