I’ve been backpacking for several years now, and solo backpacking as well. I have spent many nights in the outdoors with just a tent (and sometimes not even that) for protection. And while I have had some nights in the wild where I felt trepidation, even fear, I have rarely had anxiety about spending the night in the woods while I’m still home.
And yet, this year, I’ve had a couple of nights at home when I suddenly think about spending the night alone in the woods and I’m filled with anxiety, afraid of the worst possibilities. I can feel the fear coursing through my body and I didn’t know why I should suddenly start being afraid of something that I’m pretty comfortable with doing.
Instead of taking the anxiety as a truth, I decided to look at that anxiety as an aberration. I examined myself to try and determine what could be causing me to feel that way since I had no reason to fear that particular thing.
I came to the conclusion that this whole pandemic thing has probably caused so much anxiety in my mind that it’s just floating around and trying to attach itself to any old thing. Next I’ll probably reacquire my phobia of talking on the phone, oh wait, that totally did resurface during this pandemic.
The other day on Facebook I saw someone writing about being able to read the vibes, knowing if the vibes are positive or negative. I didn’t respond, because I feel like it would be hard to do so without coming off as trite, but I thought about it. And in the context of my free floating anxiety, I made a connection. I wanted to tell that friend to be careful that he wasn’t creating the vibes he felt he was perceiving. I’m certainly not the only one with some extra anxiety floating around, just waiting to attach itself to something in the brain.