Tuesday, January 20, 2015

From Left to Write: If I Fall, If I Die by Michael Christie

“It's not a prison if you've built it yourself... It's a fortress.”

Sometimes I think I'm developing agoraphobic tendencies. I spend almost all of my time Inside already, which would drive some people stir-crazy but not me. I may step Outside the back door when I let the dogs out, but I'm just as likely to watch them from the doorway. When I do go Outside it is with someone else, like my mother or my husband, which makes me feel safer. There are times when I could go to the store by myself (as I am not on any meds that keep me from driving) but I choose not to. Part of me is scared to drive when I am out of practice. Part of me is scared to go Outside alone. There was a time or two over a year ago that I actually had a panic attack about doing just that. 

I have social anxiety, sometimes quite severely. If I am alone there is a higher chance I will have to talk to someone; if my husband is there he can do the talking for me. I have a terrible sense of direction so part of me is scared of getting lost. As I said above, driving when I haven't for so long is frightening. What happens if I have a flare and can't drive myself home? Do I have valid reasons or am I just making excuses?

This is not something I've ever talked about before. It's a normal part of my life now to go Outside with an escort and I don't think about it much. Maybe I should. I have a therapist and I haven't even mentioned it to her! For now I am fine with going Outside as long as someone is with me, but how easily that could change. I wonder if I will ever be that girl who walked around Midtown Manhattan by herself again.

This post was inspired by the novel If I Fall, If I Die by Michael Christie,about a boy who's never been outside, thanks to his mother's agoraphobia, but ventures outside in order to solve a mystery. Join From Left to Write on January 22nd as we discuss If I Fall, If I Die. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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