anxiety, insomnia and constant fatigue

Let me set the scene: it is currently past two in the morning as I write this, curled up in a blanket that has holes for my arms and a pouch for my feet. It sounds ridiculous and to be honest, it pains me to even admit this, but this blanket has become my best friend as of late. It is my shield against the real world, a barrier between myself and the issues I avoid facing.

But a shield can only protect so far…especially when it turns out that what you’re trying to protect yourself from lies within: On the inside I feel like a giant vortex of anxiety is whirling, gradually encompassing me whole.

When I hit a bad phase of anxiety, I have the tendency to turn into a mild insomniac. A few years ago I had serious issues with this. That was also around the time that my anxiety had reached its worst point. I was exhausted, both mentally and physically, yet my mind simply wouldn’t let me rest. I would go days with very little to no sleep at all.

Me: I didn’t get a lot of sleep this week.

My friends: Ooooh who’s the guy? 😏

Me: Insomnia.

As my anxiety has gradually gotten better over the years, I have started to truly feel the toll it has taken on me. In the starting stages of me feeling better, I was utterly exhausted. Yet no matter how much better my anxiety got, it was still there, bubbling under the surface, sucking up all of my energy. So, I became the person amongst my friend group known for being able to sleep anytime, anywhere. And for the most part, we all joke about it.

I laugh along like everyone else yet underneath, I do feel as though it is connected to my anxiety. It feels unnatural to be tired as much as I am on a weekly, if not daily, basis.

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These past few months I have definitely been dealing with a bad patch of anxiety. I feel….drained. All I want to do is rest. Please, dear brain; Just let me rest. My head feels like a bundle of distress, too many thoughts whirling around to process. When I do finally fall asleep, I will often wake up hours later on the verge of a panic attack. And yet it never comes. This makes me wonder if what is coming is going to be far worse than what I am dealing with now. That fear is nearly as burdensome as my anxiety itself.

Right now I am feeling immense pressure from all sides. I think this is why my anxiety is ultimately as bad as it is right now. My anxiety right now is mostly induced by my constant worry about the future. A lot is going to change for me in the next year and I have never been one to deal with change easily.

Above everything, I feel this nagging pressure to be there for my friends and especially for my family. My family is dealing with a lot of sickness right now – my aunt has been dealing with cancer for the past year and my grandma also recently became seriously ill. I find myself constantly worrying about them yet there is nothing I can really do to ease their pain. I think that might be one of the worst feelings – knowing that there is nothing you can do to help them. And it is killing me on the inside. But I have to be strong – my whole family has to be. We have to be there for them and support them the best we can, yet I see the toll this has been taking on my family. Family reunions these days are underlined by sadness, worry and most of all fear of even more bad news.

There is also this guilt I carry inside, the guilt that I am not able to be there for everyone at the same time, that I am letting others down and that I have been distant towards some of my friends… Logically I know that there is only so much I can give of myself, only so much a single person can do for another without completely disregarding their own well-being. There is a fragile balance between taking care of others and taking care of yourself. No matter what I do, I feel like I am failing at keeping that balance. It always seems… off.

Anxiety sure is exhausting. The mental strain it places on you sucks the energy right out. The important thing I would like to end this (very depressing) post on is that despite all of this, I have still had some beautiful, happy moments here and there. In the midst of everything I have been able to laugh, enjoy moments and feel joy. If anything can be taken from my current situation, it is that we should not underestimate those little things that can turn the day around – I certainly have come to appreciate those rare moments of happiness even more.

Should any of you reading this right now be going through something similar, please remember to take care of yourself. Don’t take those scarce moments of joy for granted. Instead, embrace them and hold on tight – you are going to need them.


If you would like to read more about anxiety in connection to constant fatigue, I highly recommend checking out this post by one of my blogging friends, Chloe. It was truly eye-opening to me and also helped me come to terms with some of my own anxiety symptoms…hence this blog post right now.


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17 thoughts on “anxiety, insomnia and constant fatigue

  1. i love this. rarely have i seen my own soul spelled out so clearly, and while i empathize greatly with your sadness, i admire how well you understand yourself and how beautifully you articulate your feelings. my thoughts are with you, lovely. it will ebb and flow, as life does. trust me when i say i know what it is like, and how exhausting it can be to just live with such a draining mind. but you are so strong and so wonderful, dear friend. rest in that❤ xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. K, thank you for these wonderful, compassionate and understanding words. Once again you reassure me greatly. Not to sound too sentimental but you have truly made this WordPress experience for me a brighter place. You have such a beautiful, reflective soul which always shines though your writing. That plus your self-awareness and your ability to capture moments others would overlook in an instant is what makes me feel so connected to your writing and subsequently to you as a person. In a lot of ways, we observe life through the same lens and there have been times in my life where I have felt completely alone in what I see. So thank you for being there, dear friend. It means more to me than I can even begin to explain ❤️ xx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. oh, sweet friend. this means everything❤ you have been a true gift, an encouragement and an inspiration, from the very beginning, and especially in the midst of the chaos of the world, i am so grateful for your calming and intuitive spirit. you forever know just what to say, and just how i feel. thank you immensely, as i needed to hear this especially today. always looking forward to anything from you, and endlessly here for whatever you may need. lots of love🥰 xx

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  2. you have such a way with words, I’ve never been able to put into words what all of that feels like until I read this post lovely. I truly wish the best for you and your family and am sending all the love I can to you guys. I think this ties into your post about being the ‘strong one’ so intensely, because all of that guilt kinda stems from the same feeling like you owe it to everyone to be there for them, while struggling to be there for yourself, and then when you finally step back and acknowledge it, it’s like the exhaustion comes crashing down on you?

    My constant fatigue has also become somewhat of a joke as well. The amount of naps I take every day is comparative to that of a new born child ahaha. I don’t think many people consider all of the exhaustion that comes with anxiety when they think of it as a mental illness, but you’ve genuinely captured it so perfectly. Lots of love for you girl xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So much love for you Priya, thank you for your kind words towards my family and I.

      And EXACTLY! You conveyed what I have been dealing with perfectly, I couldn’t have summed it up better myself. Only now do I realise that I actually feel like I OWE it to everyone – to be strong for them, to be there for them. You made me realise that just now. I wonder where it comes from? That intense feeling of obligation? Interesting.

      And yes!! A lot of people simply do not know / take into account that mental illness can also cause physical symptoms (such as the constant feeling of being tired, not just mentally but also physically). It makes sense when you think about it…. It all has to come out one way or another and it’s no secret that after a while, anxiety is bound to take it’s toll on you. xx

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t know if this is a weird thing to say but your posts always remind me of the things I wish I could write these days. I feel like I don’t really write these types of posts anymore and I guess that I kind of live through you in that sense, because you always write and create the posts that I wish I still was (albeit them not always being sunshine and rainbows). This was a really beautiful post Fiona, and thank you for the little mention too ❤️ Did you know as well that anxiety causes memory loss ?? Someone told me this after I made that post and I was literally stunned because over those previous months I had been forgetting how to spell and remember words to the point I actually thought there was something serious going on with my brain, I kept Googling my symptoms because I just for the life of me could not remember how to spell the simplest of words that I’d been using all my life, and I kept making stupid spelling mistakes all the time and wondering what the hell was going on with me because, not to sound arrogant, but I’ve never been one to make spelling errors or struggle with words yet it was like I’d just forgotten everything. Turns out now that there was a 99% chance of it being due to anxiety !! I was literally speechless because it then all suddenly became so clear. I ended up killing two birds with one stone in that aspect – learning that anxiety causes fatigue and memory loss…I felt like I’d suddenly found the explanations to all of my problems !! It felt like such a weight had been lifted and now I could actually attribute the behaviour to something other than “maybe I’m just losing my mind”. After reading your new post I’m so glad you’re feeling better than you were when you wrote this 💙 I’m always here if you need me .xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sorry it took me a while to answer your comment, Chloe. In all honesty I was simply overwhelmed because WOW. Who thought that anxiety could cause memory loss?! I was shocked by this. And I am so, so sorry that this is something you have been dealing with. On the other hand, I feel relieved as well because at least you know what it is now. At least you can put a root cause to it. I can only imagine how frightening it must have been to suddenly forget the most basic things, worrying if there was something seriously wrong with you. This confirms it once and for all: anxiety is a bitch. She is not our friend. She is our enemy (and likes to work with surprise attacks… A lot).

      Also thank you for your kind-hearted words of encouragement as always. I’m always here if you need me too, Chlo xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I hate how constantly exhausted I am because of my anxiety. It feels like I could easily sleep for 12 hours a day!! Some days are better than others though and I wish these days come more regularly for you ❤ xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hannah, I can always count on you to understand exactly what I am going through when it comes to my anxiety. And even if I wouldn’t wish anxiety on anyone and always feel a tinge of sadness knowing that you have felt that same horrible, jarring feeling many times as well, I am grateful knowing that there are others out there who have felt the same and truly understand just how taxing it can be. You are so right in that there will always be good days and bad days, better days and even worse days. I guess that is something we all have to come to terms with and accept. After all, anxiety or not, that’s the way life works. Thank you.❤️xx

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Last year I met my partner and we got together, but there was a reality to face. He is actually terminally ill. A lung condition that affects on 1 in 100,000 people. He jokes that he won the genetic lottery.. It’s been a year and four months now and I’m not nearly as cut up about his condition as I was at the start. Him and I have lived with our own struggles for many many years before we came together and now we just share them. He picks up the slack when I can’t cope and I do the same for him.. although he is remarkably good at keeping it all together. Like anything, I got used to him not being healthy, even though this is something I so want for him. If I could change the situation, I’d rather it be me. It’s just gotten to a point where I accept it as something that comes along with him. An extra suitcase in baggage that I might not have accounted for but have come to expect in my life. I’m good at making friends with pain, that I know. He has a breathing machine that sounds like a heartbeat.. I never thought I’d be comforted by something like that. Life is tough in many different strange ways.. we can only hope it’ll work out whilst continuing to grow and learn each day.

    Sending you lots of love and light. I pray for the health of you, your grandmother and aunt.. all the best x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It sounds like you and your partner have a wonderful & healthy relationship despite all of the challenges that you both face. And that makes me so happy to hear, that you have a person in life with whom you feel that you could take on the world hand in hand and come out the other side together. That’s such a beautiful thing. “Life is tough in many different strange ways.. we can only hope it’ll work oit whilst continuing to grow and learn each day.” – I couldn’t have said it better myself.

      Thank you for your love and support xx

      Liked by 1 person

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