Wednesday: A Short Tale of Anxiety

Broad and Walnut, okay, uhhh where am I going again?

COFFEE, RIGHT. But where? Square One…ooh or maybe Plenty Cafe. Toast, even? Let’s go with Plenty, yeah. That’s on Pine, right? Totes, let’s go to Pine. Okay am I going up or down? I think it’s by 13th Street. No, no 16th Street. No. Yes…Uhhh, yes, yes whatever I’m going this way.

Okay…it’s not here. Where did it go? I know it’s at 16th and Pine. Wait, no that’s that other place I like. Well what the hell, it’s somewhere around here right??? 16th Street FOR. SUREBut if not Pine…then what? Agh I swear this place just got up and moved to spite me. I’m going to find you Plenty Cafe, you can run but you can’t hide!

Oh, it’s on Spruce. I knew that. Heh..

People…coming from the opposite direction… They look like they’re about to go inside too. There’s three of them. There’s not enough room for all of us in there. I’m going to speed up and get a seat before them. HAH, yesssss one seat left upstairs. It’s mine, ALL MINE. 

It is, I put my bag down. That’s only like…the universal sign of NOT YOURS, TRY AGAIN. Phew that was a close one. Now for coffee.

Lines… I can tell these people are not of the coffeeshop scene. They’re actually reading the menu. How do they not know what they want already? All I want is an iced dirty chai latte and they’re so…in my way. And they’re paying separately??? Didn’t they spend enough time telling this poor barista everything they wanted as if it were one bill? THE AGONY I’M SO CLOSE TO COFFEE YET SO FAR. I DO NOT HAVE THE PATIENCE FOR THIS…I HAVEN’T CONSUMED IT YET, BECAUSE. OF. YOU. PEOPLE.

FINALLY IT’S MY TIME TO ORDER. Iced dirty chai please and thank you. I can sit now, and be merry and set up my workspace.

This is my happy place.

This is what being responsible looks like. Laptop out. Charger in. Phone charging too. Book and notes laying beside my computer. Yes, here we go. Access Internet. Go to musicplaces.online annnnnd, my headphones…

Where are my headphones?

Pocket? Pocket? Pouch? Other pocket? Hidden pocket? Side pocket? Other side pocket? WHERE ARE THEY???

You. Idiot.

You knew you didn’t have them. You haven’t seen them since you got back from vacation.

But I refuse to believe they’re lost or that I left them. I’ve had many dark periods where I couldn’t find my headphones, but I never lost hope! And eventually, whether it be days or months later, I would always find them again. This time can’t be the time I lose them for real. No. NO. Let me check again.

Aaaaaaaaaghhhhhhh. I told myself to get a new pair before I got here. Oh my gosh they’re playing The Bird is the Word why Plenty Cafe, WHYYYYYYY.

I feel so…trapped. I need my music. How am I going to focus? How am I going to non-verbally tell people not to talk to me? I feel the stress, crawling out of the dark abysmal corner of my mind. It’s coming to take me away. And there’s nothing I can do to stop it. Should I just leave and go buy a new pair? But what if my spot isn’t here when I return? What then? Where to go, what to do? Oh my gosh, there’s no way out. No way out.

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