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Staying Seating with that Little Thing Called Anxitey

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I sat in church this Sunday feeling anxious. About what you may ask? Well...first my children. They were very squirmy during the beginning of church. I could just envision them in Sunday school punching another child in the face or throwing paint against the walls. I could just hear the teacher saying, "Let's find your mother",  as she dragged them back to where the service was being held to tell me the dreadful news of their terrible behavior. Of course, that did not happen.

Everyone is staring at me, I just know it! That is how I feel when sitting lonesome in the church bleachers. I also have a tremendous bruise on the back of my hand from Jiu Jitsu. It is like a beacon of bruised light bursting from the seams. It is like the bat signal saying, "look at me!". I shift uncomfortably and then place my hand underneath my church program.

Then, I look over at the woman sitting next to me. She has her hands folded deliberately and firmly placed in her lap. She has a neurological condition in which she has involuntary movements every few minutes. She cannot control this, but is completely aware that other people stare and are aware of these involuntary movements. She sighs heavily after each twist of the neck, legs, or hands.

I now know that I am not the only one anxious or uncomfortable. I can tell it is just as difficult for her as it is for me to remain seated. We both have the urge to jump up and run from our seats, but we find the strength to stay. Anxiety has us frozen in place. I barely heard the sermon and eagerly awaited dismissal. Why did I come to church again? This is difficult to say.

I do know that I made it through the service and I try hard not to use my anxiety as an excuse to stay closed up indoors. This is hard, oh so hard, but I make the effort to stay seated. I could get up and run, but I stay seated. For this, I am proud.


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