A New Me

Polyanna Macintosh in The Woman (2011)

Even my earliest memories are colored by a knowledge of my “Type A” personality. I have always admitted a strong need to be in control. I have always recognized my own short emotional fuse and intolerance for incompetence. For the first several decades of my life, I explored these powerful, often explosive, aspects of my psyche. Instead of the walls normal people build to keep dangerous others from infiltrating, I built a bomb box carefully designed to contain the ugliest and most violent of my reactions. With the unpleasant and unkind aspects of my emotions turned inward, I could present a calm, reasonable face to the world. I felt safe releasing myself into the general population, confident I had channeled the most dangerous aspects of myself into an energy to fuel the positive.

It worked.  For a long while.

Now it seems this policy of containment, combined with the messy, chaotic nature of reality has spawned some new person living in my brain. She’s spent her entire life trapped in a war-zone. Surrounded by the explosions of anger, she fed herself on regret and jealousy. She wove herself a blanket of self-doubt for the chilly nights and spent her days honing fear to a razor thin blade. She carried frustration and sorrow until her muscles bulged under her thin, radiation-burned skin. She waited patiently as the walls of her box slowly eroded under the constant pressure until one day a crack appeared.

Now she is free.  She is feral and blinded by the glare of the world outside her box. All she knows is the need to survive, and she acts on instinct and impulse. They tell me her name is Anxiety.


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