I started getting headaches at work. At first I thought that they were just due to the stress of my job. But when they didn’t go away I knew something was wrong with me. I thought maybe it was something to do with my brain. I wondered if there was something really wrong. That’s when the thoughts started. Was I dying? The more the pain persisted, the more I started spinning and thinking out of control thoughts. What if something was the matter with me and I didn’t know what it was? I was too afraid to go to the doctor; what if they told me that I only had a few days to live? I remember being on the phone with my best friend and trying to tell her that something was wrong with me. She told me that I was exaggerating. She told me that I needed to speak to somebody because this was getting out of hand. But I told her that there was nothing wrong with me psychologically. She insisted that I go talk to someone. I kept trying to explain about the headaches and how I thought it had something to do with my brain. Maybe I needed to see a neurologist? One night I lay down to go to sleep and the back of my head started to tingle.

It started suddenly and alarmed me. The tingling became burning and I was up for the entire night. I called my best friend the next day and I told her something was definitely wrong with me. She kept telling me that I needed to talk to someone. I told her the person I needed to talk to was a doctor. So I finally faced my fear and went to the doctor and I got a bunch of tests; they all came back negative. My best friend told me once again that I needed to talk to someone and that “someone” was a therapist.  I listened to her and I went to see a therapist. I didn’t want to go but I somehow knew that I should go. My head kept hurting and hurting and I needed to find out what was wrong with me. The therapist was kind and she listened to me. But she told me that this was likely anxiety. I couldn’t believe it. There had to be something physically wrong with me. She sent me to see a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist was kind as well and he explained to me that a lot of times anxiety can show up in your body. He suggested I try medicine and I listened. I was afraid but I still listened. Low and behold the doctor was right. After a couple weeks of taking the medicine, my head stopped hurting. The medicine made my head stop burning. It was anxiety after all. Our brains are weird. Sometimes we don’t know why they do the things that they do. But I am glad to know that there is nothing terribly wrong with me. I have anxiety and that’s okay. I have anxiety and sometimes it takes over my body. But now I know what it is. Now I know how to cope. Now I know I will survive.

If you are experiencing painful physical symptoms in your body, it could be something that is actually psychological like anxiety. Speak to a mental health professional and get some guidance on what you’re going through. You can talk with someone in person or with an online therapist. Read about online therapy at BetterHelp.com You can read about how the physiological symptoms of anxiety can manifest in this article. No matter what you’re going through there is someone out there who can help!