Sunday, 19 April 2015

Sweaty Palms Potion

I'm doing incredibly well at the moment, really. So well, that were my life a terrible action movie, I would be saying "I'm doing well... too well."

I'm thinking about reducing my medication, perhaps in a couple of months' time once I've settled into my new job properly.

Of course, some days are better than others. I still get anxious, over the most ridiculous and inconsequential things, which I'm sure no one else notices, no matter what I may assume. But I feel I've reached a point (partially thanks to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) where I can almost ignore my anxiety, and just get on with life regardless.

Which is why, this week, I have embroidered the words "Anxiety is just one small part of me and I won't let it run my life" on sumptuous orange velvet ribbon for #secretsofselfpreservation.

Why orange? Simply because Judy Chicago wrote in Autobiography that orange is the colour of anxiety, and I agree with her. Louise Bourgeois appliquéd the words "The cold of anxiety is very real" on to a white garment reminiscent of a lab coat. Anxiety has never struck me as cold, other than the clammy sensation felt in the aftermath of a panic attack. For me, anxiety is hot and prickly, bubbling up like lava in the body and overflowing into erratic and panicked behaviour. Orange, therefore, just makes sense as anxiety's colour to me, though I am aware this is entirely subjective and doubtless many people would have a different association.

I have filled the potion bottle (which, fortuitously, has an orange lid) with orange tic tacs, which are pill-like, reminding me of how far I've come in my medicated journey and that one day I may be able to live a "normal" life without medication.

I wrote part of the (orange, naturally) potion label with my right hand to get the shaky, juddery characteristic of anxiety across.

I really like the use of uniform colour and will definitely be exploring this in future potions.

Remember you can get involved too, via the hashtag #secretsofselfpreservation, by writing about a simple way you plan to, or already do, take care of yourself. Alternatively, you can create your own embroidered (or written on paper) potion - just remember to include the hashtag #secretsofselfpreservation along with your snaps of it.

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