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Guest Opinion: The monster inside of me

Anxiety, Simple word right? Wrong. Thousands of people around the world deal with this mental illness everyday. This is my story. I was around 8 or 9 years old I despised school because I felt sick all the time and I would get distressed about everything I had to do. My mom and I went tothe doctor to get some tests done to see what was upsetting me. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, which affects how I feel a lot of the time. I got a prescription to help me feel better.

After a couple of months I still didn't feel good. Every time I would get nervous or overwhelmed I would start feeling sick (headaches, stomach aches, feel nauseous, etc.). For example, one time in school I was nervous for some odd reason and I just started crying and crying. We were very confused why I felt this way. Until I started telling my mom how I felt and she had an idea that I had anxiety. I had more tests done and it turned out I did have anxiety.

This mental illness affects how you act and even how your body feels, too. But don't let this "mental illness" phrase scare you. It's very common, one in four Americans deal with this every day. Women are more common to get it then men. I've had this mental illness for awhile now and it doesn't just go away, even when you really want it to. Its normal to get nervous about some things, but if you have a hard time doing something or saying something because that thought inside of you is holding you back, this might mean you have anxiety. If this sounds like you, you might want to think about telling someone.

Here is my advice and some ways to cope with this mental health issue. One way to help is to talk! Talking to a therapist, your parents, your sibling(s), grandparents, aunts or uncles, or even your teachers—it will help you. Another way that helps me is getting outside and having friends or family time, having this time really helps me know I'm loved. The last advice I can give you is to relax, make sure you find time for yourself, like watching your favorite movie, snuggling with your animals or even taking a nap.

My advice to you is to talk to a loved one because this can be a hard thing to deal with. There are also many of people that could probably relate to you. Sometimes it even runs in the family, so talk to them! Many people take medication for anxiety and it really does help. Anxiety is a monster, it holds you back from many activities, sports and more. But I promise you there is a way to cope with this.

Madi Halverson of Baxter is a seventh-grade student at Forestview Middle School.