by Nitya Salil
When thoughts become noise and crowd out the still, small voice, I know the intruder’s name: anxiety. For years I didn’t even know it had a name. It was only a feeling. A lump in my throat from when I was six. Tightening in my chest. Brain fog.
And then my parents read up tons of literature online and consulted every expert within our reach.
Anxiety disorder, they said.
It sounded like the gavel had slammed the desk and the judgment was pronounced forever. I had to remain in a state of anxiety forever. When triggered, I could not do the smallest task until the wave of anxiety was done, leaving a debris trail of incomplete tasks behind.
My thoughts would knot up, like a ball of yarn in a reckless kitten’s jaws. Undisentanglable. You see how incomprehensible that word is? That’s because I’m starting to feel anxious right now.
Should there be a paragraph break here? Will this submission be accepted? Am I emotionally manipulating the selection team? Are there any grammatical errors?
But now, I am about to do what I have learnt to regulate my anxiety. Pause. Breathe. Become grounded in my senses. Call out one thing I can see, feel, hear. Enter into stillness. Close my eyes. Let the Holy Spirit do His miracle. Yield. Yield. Yield. Let go of all expectations. Let go of the natural realm and allow the supernatural to take over my mind.
I’m seated in the heavenly places. Just as He is, so are we in this world. We have the mind of Christ. Take one or two words. Heavenly places. Chew the words, drink the juice, chew some more. The Spirit infused word gives life. My anxiety is swallowed up by a strange sense of peace that surpasses my understanding.
I hear my daughter call out, “Mom, what’s for dinner?” I’m back into my natural world. Calmer. Stronger. “Spaghetti! In fifteen minutes, once I finish writing this piece,” I call back. I’m ready for one more task. I can take one step of faith at a time.
Nitya Salil is a homeschooling mom, an anxious author, a first generation believer of the Trinity, an imperfect wife, and an enthusiastic entrepreneur.