Healing Is Difficult

Healing is difficult

This is not a story of triumph. This is one of the stories they rarely tell but are so common and necessary on the road to healing.

I’ve spoken about my anxiety on here before, how it chokes and paralyzes me and prevents me from living my best life at the worst times. This is one of those times.

Almost 6 months ago I planned, with a friend, to go to a music festival in New York. We bought passes, booked a flight and found an AirBnB. As it got closer to the date instead of being excited about seeing Solange, Frank Ocean, and Glass Animals, I was wracked with fear. I spent the nights before talking myself off the edge so that I could sleep for a few minutes. My stomach was constantly tied in knots thinking of what could go wrong on the flight or on the ground. At work and around people, I seemed fine. I mean, I’m generally a bit neurotic so fine for me isn’t necessarily fine for everyone else.  At home, alone, I ached for someone to hold me and tell me everything would be OK. I shook myself to sleep worried death was awaiting me on the tarmac. I drove my parents crazy telling the same stories over and over about how alone and afraid I felt. And then, the day before the flight, I gave in.

At the last minute, I canceled our flight and booked tickets on the Amtrak to go from Atlanta to New York. I hadn’t done something like this in years. My decision was rash, misguided and rooted in fear. I felt embarrassed, weak, and broken. Years of progress towards peace were shattered in an instant and so was my bank account. Luckily enough, my homegirl had a fear of flying too so she totally understood and was a great sport about taking the train. That didn’t and doesn’t make me feel better. I still feel like I let everyone down, especially myself.

This is what life coaches and positive thinkers don’t tell you. Healing is difficult. It is not a straight line from fear to freedom. I wish it were but it’s not. It’s sunny days filled with hope and dark nights of the soul when you are scared, alone, and forced to figure out who you really are. This process tests your will and mental fortitude when you are in no place to exhibit either.

If you ever for a moment questioned why I write, these moments are it. The times when I can show you my light and my dark and remind you that we all fall short. We all have shit we are trying to work out and work through, some more than others. Though I feel embarrassed and ashamed, I know this was a lesson I needed to learn. This was an experience I needed to have. Not only so I can be better, but so I can teach and inspire others. Healing is difficult, it’s not impossible.


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  • Reply
    July 31, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    I remember speaking to a therapist about anxiety and resilience and her assessment was that people with anxiety are typically more resilient than the average person because they’ve had to navigate these twists and turns. You should never feel ashamed of your experiences, but I love your attitude that you will use them as a learning point to move on from x

  • Reply
    Brian Elliott
    July 31, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    Sure is difficult, especially if you go alone. The Almighty Father is able to be your strength in your time of need. All the best in your healing process.

  • Reply
    Natalie @ Obsessive Cooking Disorder
    July 31, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    Good luck on your healing journey!!

  • Reply
    Niki McNeill
    July 31, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    Ana you are so brave to share your journey. I too know how difficult healing can be! Praying that your courage to persevere inspires someone else!

  • Reply
    July 31, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    Such a great post, well-written too. Thanks for letting us in by sharing the truth behind the real you. It is such times I believe that everyone has a purpose in life, and sometimes you have to go through something to serve your purpose. Reading your post I feel like you’re doing a great job enlightening a lot of us on the struggles people with anxiety face. There were things i didn’t know but I just learnt through this post SO thanks so much. I’m glad I read this post…. I really hope you heal – I know you said it’s difficult, but not impossible too!

  • Reply
    July 31, 2017 at 8:36 pm

    We need those exeperiences to make us better. I agree! Thanks for sharing the truth about it.

  • Reply
    July 31, 2017 at 10:51 pm

    You share this as a story about how healing is a journey, and I agree, but I also don’t see this as a negative thing! You canceled the flight but you didn’t back out of the trip – you did what was needed for you at that point in time and that was taking another mode of transport. Sometimes we need to battle through things and sometimes we need to just accept it’s too hard and pick another way – neither of these options is a sign of weakness.

    Thank you for sharing your struggles – but don’t ever feel bad about doing what you needed at that point in time. You don’t need to feel embarrassed or ashamed. You’re doing a great job! Maybe next time you take a flight you’ll remember how well this backup plan went and so feel less stressed about it knowing you could do the same again!

  • Reply
    Erica Life Purpose Coach
    August 1, 2017 at 10:31 am

    Thank you for sharing your journey! You are so brave. I’ve also struggled with anxiety in the past and now look back knowing it was something I had to go through and learn how to heal within myself to live the life I’m living now. You will get there beautiful!! xxxxxxx

  • Reply
    Bethany | Biracial Bookworms
    August 1, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    I recently published part of a traumatic event and it was amazing at the physical healing that came from pressing send. Great article and I commend your vulnerability!

  • Reply
    August 2, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    Such a great post. I’m dealing with my own demon at the moment, and am in the process of writing about it too. It is interesting how we’re all a little bit crazy, just different kinds, and we ALLLLLL have to find our way, don’t we? I wish I could help you; I used to be terrified of flying, and I still really don’t enjoy it, but I can get through it now. xx

    • mm
      Anastasia Nicole
      August 3, 2017 at 8:42 am

      Thanks love! I think the important thing we all have to remember is that everyone is going through something at some point or another and we are all just trying to find our way through.

  • Reply
    August 2, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    This is definitely inspiring and I hope that you continue your healing and be blessed in all that you do!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2017 at 2:40 am

    I written about my feeling out during the healing process I would never be brave enough to share it out. After the storm there has to be a rainbow.

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