I’ve never really known what anxiety really was until recent times.  It can be a real bitch too.  When talking about anxiety in general, you will hear things like feeling on edge about something, feeling of restlessness in situations you don’t like and feeling irritable.

Tonight Matthew, I’m going to be… all of the above.

Let me quickly set the scene.  Tonight was Christmas Fair night at my daughters’ school.  The first Christmas fair of what would be many as she spends the first 6 years or so of her schooling life there.  School is a busy enough place when all the kids are there learning.  Now factor in all those kids being there with their parents and grandparents.  Imagine just how many people are now crammed into the school.

I believe this is the first time I’ve really felt uncomfortable with such a large number of people in such a confined space.  All 4 of us were there tonight; Me, the wife, our daughter, and our 10-month-old son in his pushchair.  A pushchair in the environment we were in was not the best call – both I and the wife will say that, but he’s too heavy to carry around without getting back issues.

Most of the time there the wife followed our daughter around doing the different games, buying the different cakes and arts ‘n’ crafts.  I tried to avoid the masses of people trying to get from A to B in the tiniest of spaces.  I generally hung to one side with the pushchair.

It was in the main hall (the most open part of the school) that I very nearly just took the pushchair and left.  I could feel myself fighting any emotions that were trying to come out, really not wanting to break down or anything in front of all these people that I don’t know.  I just wanted the ground to open up and swallow me there and then.

A couple of minutes later (or what felt like much longer) the wife returned with our daughter and we eventually left.  I held it together while we walked back to the car, while I drove a quick errand to pick something up and until we got home.  As soon as we got home I needed something to do, so I went straight to tidying up.

The wife at this point knew something was off.  Then something happened which has never happened while I’ve felt like this, I told her what was wrong… kind of.  We just had a moment together and I explained that I just don’t think I can deal with large crowds – especially in confined spaces.

Granted having the pushchair did not help because you can’t really maneuver is anywhere and it really doesn’t help when people look gone out when you ask “excuse me please”.  It’s sometimes like you’re an inconvenience to them stood in the way not doing anything, rather than it actually be them who are the inconvenience.

What I need now is something to keep my mind busy.  Thus me straight into the tidying at home and now writing about my ordeal to all you wonderful readers.  I’m now a lot calmer than I was earlier, so thank you for your time and for letting me ‘get this off my chest’ if you’ve got this far.