We start Float with ‘How the World Ends.’ But to truly understand the ending, one must understand the beginning. Since Float is a graphic memoir, I knew the subject matter would be extremely personal and difficult to share with my readers. There are things in the book that I’ve hidden from family members and my close friends. I made a vow to be as honest about my experiences with anxiety as I can possibly be.
And yes, that is Baby Howie that I’ve illustrated above.
From what I can gather, I’ve suffered from anxiety since grade school. I would get sharp, stabbing pains down my spine during testing or just in social situations where my nerves would take control. By sixth grade, I now believe I can pinpoint my first anxiety attack. A rush of panic caused me to pace uncontrollably and sink into a deep abyss flooded by nonsensical fears. As I often do now, I talked to myself and blurted out these fears. A moment that shouldn’t be dedicated to a memory book: Baby’s First Panic Attack.
I’d never given much thought to that outburst until I started working on Float. I just assumed everyone handled embarrassment, shame and irrational fear just like me. In that instance, I simultaneously envisioned an endless future of pain and fear. I paced back and forth. I reasoned with myself, and it turns out, I reasoned with anxiety. That’s the inner voice raising all this hell. It’s anxiety that feeds on my fears and worries. He wants me to panic because it gives him life. Anxiety’s been growing along with me since childhood. In some ways, he far more advanced since he can gain control over me and outsmart me still. Of course, by this point, I have tried many different methods to try and manage my anxiety, most to no avail. If my anxiety creeps up on me every now and then I might have to start looking at alternatives such as other medicines like CBD, for example. I could very well start speaking to my Doctor and also have a look at websites similar to buy mellow to find out more information on how CBD could calm my anxieties, but as for now, I’m trying to be the one that outsmarts my anxious passenger.
This book is my stand against anxiety’s strength. I’m calling him out. Float is the main event fight. It will take some time, but the fight is worth it, it’s the next step forward. I know for most people who suffer, their first fight doesn’t sort out their issues, but a combination of powerful pushing forward can put them on the right path, this may include using recreational activities, which people can find out here about if they want to know more.