Anxiety, I hate you so much. I hate the way you choke the life out of me. I despise the way you steal my sleep, and the way you sit on my chest like an elephant. I hate you. I hate the way you stand in the doorway, blocking me from leaving my house when all I want to do is spend an evening out with friends. I hate you. I hate you for making me the mom that worries constantly. I loathe all the times you’ve blurred my vision, made my head spin, and played drums inside my ears. I hate you. I hate it when you wrap your arms around me, disguised as a hug, but instead of feeling the comfort of familiar arms, I feel as though my bones will break, and my insides will turn to mush. I feel you physically in my back and my shoulders. I feel you running around inside my mind, making me imagine worst case scenarios. What if I get in a wreck and the airbag deploys and kills my baby? What if my daughter suffocates in her sleep? What if my husband never makes it home from work? Stupid Anxiety. Leave me alone. You’re an uninvited neighbor that overstays their welcome. I hate you. I hate you for making it impossible to enjoy my pregnancy. I hate it when you take my hand as though you care, but instead you grip me with fear. For years, I’ve begged you to go. Leave me alone. I never asked for you to visit. I never asked for you to stay. I hate you. Anxiety. You make me so tired, yet you steal my sleep. Sometimes I wish that you weren’t invisible so people could see you, hanging from my body like a ball and chain. Then maybe they would understand. Understand what? Why I overanalyze every conversation? Why I replay words over and over and over in my head? Why I fear every person in the room is picking me apart in their head? Why I’ve never felt good enough? Why I’m paranoid about my body? Why I’m only good at being a long distance friend? If they could see you, I wouldn’t be tasked with trying so hard to pretend. I hate you. Anxiety, I hate you.