Suddenly, I realized I was awake, and the anxiety hit me. For a moment, I stared at the dresser, attempting to choke it down. Then, I willed my muscles to move my body out of bed, but they disobeyed. I froze beneath my covers. Over and over I told myself, “I will get up right now.” And, yet, I still could not move. My head sunk beneath the blankets, and within moments, I stifled for breath. The hot air stilled inside my throat and nostrils, and I felt as though I was suffocating. I wanted to jump to the window and open it to the cool winter outside. Either way, I felt so short of the day's excruciating task. Even alone in the bedroom, I could hear the comments people would make when they found out I hadn't completed it. It felt so looming and so large. It felt like the end of the world; it was just too important to screw up. And I would be the one to screw it up.
Yet, another thought crept into my mind, and I asked myself aloud. “When did I become so afraid of life? W