A Trip To Walmart Alone

I wake up and go over the short list of things that I told myself I needed to accomplish that day. One thing that needs to be done is picking up some craft supplies at the closest Walmart.
My blood pressure goes a bit up and I feel the nervousness gnawing on my insides. I make myself think of what everyone always tells me when I have anxiety about something "It won't be as bad as you think", "what are you even afraid of happening?" or something along those lines. I tell myself not to worry and that I just need to go and get it over with. What is the worst thing that could happen?
Ha! Famous last words.
I drive to the Walmart that I know how to get to best, oddly enough I don't get lost or confused on the way. I park easily enough and get out of my car as gracefully as I can. I begin the short trek to the large building in my five-inch wedge heels, wobbling ever so slightly with every step. That is when the fear and irrational thoughts really get going.
My brain seems to work on its own, refusing to listen to anything that I am saying. Instead I think about what other people might be thinking of me. Someone looks at me and I want to turn around but I don't. I keep walking. My heartbeat going faster every second, I ignore these feelings however and keep going.
Finally I make it through the door. Should I grab a cart? No, that would make me too noticeable. A basket? Yes, but I accidentally pass by the stack of baskets and can't bring myself to draw attention by turning around. I begin walking at a steady pace, this isn't so bad. I look around at the aisles and signs but it starts to feel like everyone is staring at me. It feels like everyone's eyes are drilling into me. I begin to panic a bit and my vision becomes blurred. I can't read the signs and my mind is too fuzzy to figure out where to go. I'll be damned if I stop walking to look lost and confused. My pace quickens, I just want to get out of this hell hole.
"Why is she wearing that?", "Wow, she is overweight", "She looks so scared" and many more imaginary thoughts from bystanders run through my head. Why do I think that they are saying these things? Because when I see someone my own first reaction is judgment. I push those thoughts away as soon as I can but I can't help worrying about whether or not people are thinking disparaging thoughts about me.
I continue my walk of shame. I'm not sure when it starts happening but my panic reaches a whole new level, I can't breathe. My throat feels like it is closing up and I stop in the middle of the store because everything is covered in a haze of confusion. I am disoriented and scared. Where am I? Why am I here? What am I supposed to be doing? I can't take it anymore.
I flee. I will try going shopping another day...
Cutecolleen Cutecolleen
18-21, F
8 Responses Jan 13, 2013

It sounds like you have some serious anxiety problems...I hope you're getting help with it. I remember I had some problems like that when I was in a teen. Going to the bookstore really scared me, and I just felt like I had to do it super fast, and then get out of there.

That is only one of my many anxiety problems. taking medication and going to therapy so I am getting help but in the end I need to just push through the hard stuff in life.

Well, I mean dressed like THAT!!! You didn't hear half of what the ladies said after you past, but OMG, turn my hair blue, too!

Disgusting, and you Should be ashamed of yourself. What would your mother say? I declare.
And now for the pictmixtion of our animation
When you have the internal dialog, do you find yourself searching for all those voices? I mean they are wrong, but sure does sound right, not too much blood on Walmart's floor, not so you would need cleats or anything.

I mean you are doing your very best to get clear of these feelings, right?

I am going to recommend you start with real serious listening. And LOOK at the person you are creating the conversation with. But watch and listen like there is going to be a test later. Watch it with real curiosity. I mean you ARE making this stuff up. You know it, I know it, your friends know it, so what!

It is real. (Who me contradict myself within two sentences? au contrare )

So watch it and be amused and interested. You will be experiencing body sensations (not emotions those are labels like anxious), but physical sensations that have a size, shape, height, depth and width, you image how much water it could hold, what it is made out of, texture and color.

Then when that shape is really clear in your mind say to yourself, "There was another time you felt like this, recall that time." You can keep doing that until you come to the core experience. This will be the root of your decision to feel the way you do in any given situation. Once you find that decision, take a look and tell yourself, this is a valuable decision and likely useful (like for times you are naked surrounded by Hell's Angels after the end of the world, a modicum of acute anxiety is likely very appropriate [we are assuming you are not a biker **** in this scenario, please adjust this metaphor for your local conditions.]), but you have other solutions and ways of acting. Then just allow your mind to come up with at least five different ways of acting. Let them be anything. You will find using these techniques will waste enough of your time, you'll be out of Walmart and on to your next irrational adventure.

Be warned, this has been known to make people feel better. All masochists should use this with extreme caution.

Is it just me...or do some people 'prey' on the vulnerability of others??!!...aren't we supposed to be here to help one another??...not talk about perverted crap....wtf?

hi colleen... you should go with Daddy... he will keep you safe and secure.... and when we get home you can model the new thong panties you thought I didn't see you buy, ; )

That would be wonderful to go with daddy :)

You should go with companion only,I can help

hi! i think i can help with your problem regarding those matters if you are interested. please contact me at this number. 09168860707..
Thank you and GodBless...

Awwww cutecolleen...you are writing the story of how my life used to be...and some days still is. First thing i want to suggest to you...and i made sure i did it too....i would only wear flat shoes when i would go to a store, i wanted to make sure i had good balance!..secondly GOOD FOR YOU!!!! and yes keep trying..that is the BEST thing any of us can do....don't let the irrational panic thoughts win...try again tomorrow, and the next day...etc.... thirdly...if i was in a store and by some very rare chance i noticed you looking shaky, i would very quietly come up and ask if you were okay...i say that because for all we know....half the store is feeling the same way!..they say anxiety disorders are on the rise...so is it really that far fetched to think there are others in the store too!..something to ponder :)
and lastly.....and this one took me a while to accept...most people are too busy with their own scrambled lives, and shopping lists, and deadlines, etc....to worry about what the heck we are doing anyway......
You have my full support girl..............keep on going!

Thank you so much :) That is true, I'm sure there are other people who have a plethora of worries on their minds, probably too many to worry about what I am doing

I can understand that I don't want to go anywhere by myself because I'm scared of how I'm going to feel. Keep trying I think the only thing we can do is force ourselves to do things.

Yeah, that is what I seem to be best at. When all else fails, I just push through the panic as hard as I can till I finally come out the other side.