This is the first time I have used a forum for anything. I’ve spent my lifetime, probably since the age of 7, journaling. My journal was my friend…the one place I could be honest and where the clutter in my head could be sorted. I’m a classic introvert. I love people on my own terms, but even in a crowd I am lonely and depressed. Like most introverts we learn to adapt…we act, we wear masks to function in public, but in private is where we are most ok. Ironically for me, in private is also the most lonely and isolated that I feel. I both love my bedroom, and simultaneously feel it is my prison. I seek out water. I walk by lakes, streams, puddles if need be because water calms my anxiety and panic. I’m pretty sure the anxiety and depression stem from the loneliness which seems to increase with age. I no longer write, but I find myself wishing that I had a vice. I’ve tried, but I’m too rational and my mind knows that drinking or smoking are temporary fixes, and when the cigarette goes out or the glass is empty, the pain will still be there, I’ll still be alone, and eventually that overwhelming panic will return. I live in a science- based world. Take pharmaceuticals and all will be well, but I believe there has to be alternatives to chemicals. I meditate, and I feel ok …just ok. I go to church and during that hour I am ok…just ok. I am tired of being just ok. I googled for a counselor more than once, and actually went and sat on the couch encouraged by my courage. He stared at me for the entire hour and didn’t say anything…nothing…silence. I decided I could save the $40 co-pay and be in silence alone.