I suffer claustrophobia, the irrational FEAR of confined spaces which is devastating. Taking the underground is an arduous task; locking the door in a cubicle is suffering; MRI scans are out of the question. From sweating and trembling to feelings of suffocation, I suffer all the symptoms.
One misconception about claustrophobia is that it only pertains to the fear of being physically confined. While claustrophobes scorn the idea of finding themselves in enclosed spaces, a crowded concert or a traffic jam could trigger equally unpleasant symptoms of anxiety. This is because people who are more sensitive to their environment are often inclined to feel trapped even in the absence of physical barriers. A vivid imagination can also spark to this fear. A tendency to over-thinking may lead people to consider the unpleasant outcomes of a non life-threatening situation. In some cases, the fear could even be a means of externalising emotional subjugation by projecting trapped feelings to the immediate environment.
Claustrophobia does vanish but as if by magic. Many would choose to climb hundreds of steps to avoid an overcrowded lift or travel for twice as long to steer clear of the underground. Whether claustrophobia can be completely overcome is something only time can tell; claustrophobes must for the moment grit their teeth and bear it.
I write a lot, which keeps me off the streets and out of trouble. There is always something to write about, always a new story to craft. Not writing, for me, is like trying to hold back a sneeze. Learning to write was the most powerful influence in my life. I can still remember the awe I felt when I realized I could put real words onto paper and tell out a story. From that first ‘a-ha’ moment I knew I wanted to write.
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