I'm getting published! After over ten years of waiting, the past few months have been a whirlwind of happy emotions (and I wasn't even able to talk about it for most of those past few months!). It's already been an amazing experience and there have been so many highs as part of that.
However, amid the excitement and the highs, there has also been something else, something that I wasn't really expecting. And that was anxiety.
I'm no stranger to anxiety, but for some reason I assumed that my anxiety wouldn't have anything to do with being published, with this accomplishment that I've been dreaming of for so long.
But as soon as I learned that I was going to be published, the anxiety did hit, and it hit harder than I've felt it in years. Only a few days after I heard the news, I was in a pretty rough place, and at one point it was so bad I actually contemplated begging my agent's forgiveness and calling the whole thing off because my anxiety was so insistent that I would not be able to do this.
Luckily I knew my anxiety, and I knew if I rode it out that it would get better. And it did. Right before it hit again, worse than even before. And I had to start the process all over again.
Anxiety is hard. It's made this process of being published hard in a way that I wasn't expecting and that, in certain moments, felt so unfair, because I didn't want to be anxious. I wanted to be celebrating. But I have also come to realize that anxiety is going to be a part of my writing journey, just like it's part of my life journey.
So many of the writers I follow on social media have been open about their anxiety and mental health, and I wanted to make sure I talked about mine too. Because I think it's important to be open about it and to not try to hide it.
For any writers out there with anxiety too, always make sure to take care of yourself (like I'm making more of a concerted effort to take care of myself as well). And know that you're more than your anxiety and that you can do the thing!