Anxiety can entirely consume a person. It can make you feel helpless, like you can't breathe, like you're stuck inside you're own head and can't get out. And as with any 'invisible illness,' you never know who may be suffering. With the stigma attached to mental illness, you often don't see how badly someone might be suffering, if at all. I know for me personally, I feel embarrassed when I have to admit to someone that I was just vomiting because I was so anxious, or when I have to hide my on-coming tears when I feel a panic attack coming on in public. A lot of people don't understand how that feels, so the stigma of mental illness being an 'exaggeration' or a character flaw still lingers.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, which I've decided is the perfect time to officially debut my photography series on anxiety, which I've titled "Seeing the Symptoms." I've always felt awkward about openly talking about my feelings and intimate details like that, so when I decided I wanted to spread awareness about my symptoms, I figured using photography would be a much better route. Even as I'm writing this, I have this feeling of underlying anxiety that I have no idea how to describe, other than by the feeling portrayed in this picture.
I'm going to try and post a photo from this series at least once a week all throughout the month of May. Let's try to support each other and end the stigma ♥