I will be starting college in about a week. Kill me now.
I imagine my college experience will be like my high school experience only magnified times ten. I'm feeling very anxious just thinking about it. But I will get through this the same way I got through high school. By "faking it". I find that pretending to not have SAD is very helpful when put in situation like this. Because of high school I've become a master at "faking it". None of best friends even suspected anything was wrong, and these were the people I spent the most time around.
My strategy for" faking it", isn't very good, but it works for me. I simply display an outward calm, and self control, pretending that i'm very comfortable in my skin, while I freak the eff out in my head. See, I told you it's not the best plan, but it actually works.
Example: I recently had to go up to my school to take a placement test (annoying). When I finished with the test there was guy sitting and waiting for his turn, I was already feeling pretty anxious just by being in the school. I handed in my test and went to make my way back down the steps and out of the building, only problem being, I couldn't find the freaking stairs (How do you lose stairs?). I walked all the way down the hall an then back up looking for the stairs feeling like a complete and utter retard because the guy was looking at me and probably wondering what I was doing walking up and down the hall. When I finally found the stairs, I was mortified. They were like 3 feet in front of the guy and by this point it was pretty obvious that to him that it was the stairs I was looking for. At this point I had two choices, I could be embarrassed and silently sulk down the stairs, or I could suck it up and "fake" my way out an embarrassing situation. Being a master" faker", I obviously chose option number two. I looked at the stairs and chucked a bit and then said " Wow, I must be blind" and then the guy smiled and then I smiled and made my way down the steps looking like a girl who isn't embarrassed by getting a little lost.
Some people may see this as being a fake person, but I don't. The way I see myself with SAD is like I have two different sides of me. The SAD side of me clearly has no common sense. She's of things that should't scare her and completely unreasonable. And then there is the side of me without SAD who is reasonable, who knows that being around someone that you don't know doesn't mean you should be scared of them, and who know that talking to someone the phone should't be something that is feared. It's like I have these two sides warring inside of me. I feel like the SAD side of me controls the anxious feelings and thoughts while other side of me controls my mouth, and actions. I feel like while i'm "faking it" i'm just being the person I would have been without the SAD, that i'm being me. It's just a version of me that doesn't feel very comfortable saying and doing the things that i do, but does them anyways. I know it's kind of complicated and hard to explain, but this is the best I could do.
I plan on continuing this in college, because I think it's the only way I could get through it. I just have to keep reminding myself that everyone is a person, just like me. That it's okay to be embarrassed sometimes, but that I can't let it take over. I won't let having having SAD ruin my college experience, or make me miss out things that I will regret when I get older. I won't let having SAD make a recluse who is to afraid of life to live it.