My Roommate, Heather Chandler…by Michelle
So I live with the WORST roommate ever. She’s SUCH a bitch; I call her Heather Chandler.
Heather Chandler was the ringleader of the Heathers, in the movie Heathers. If you haven’t seen it, you really should. It’s late 80s gold. But before I digress, let me tell you a little bit about my roommate Heather Chandler. She is, in fact, named after the movie character. And I gave her that name. I gave her that name because I was sick of calling her “my” anxiety. Every time I called her “my” anxiety, I took ownership of her. I cemented further that she was something I would never break free from, or be able to get rid of. And I refuse to believe that. So I named her Heather Chandler; the bitchy frenemy that shows up just to cause trouble now and then. To put me down, and make me feel small and damaged. But just like the movie character, her days are numbered. Because I’ve given her a name.
Before we can begin to make changes to something, we first have to understand it. We need to study it. When you’re playing Jenga, you don’t just pull the bottom layer out. You take a look at the design, and act accordingly. Anxiety is no different. It’s a teetery-tottery structure that needs to be handled with care. Where did it come from? What does its foundation look like? How can we start to dismantle it tactfully? It needs to be given form, before it can be taken apart.
For me, getting a handle on managing anxiety began with determining where it came from, what its life was like, and how had its personality formed. Once that could be seen, releasing ownership could begin. Thus Heather Chandler was born. Giving her a name, and knowing her backstory, has allowed me to view my relationship with Heather Chandler differently. Some days she’s cool, and we don’t have much to do with one another. Some days she’s SUPER chatty; and catty. But being able to view her as “other”, has helped as a first step. And my yoga and mindfulness practice helps me further develop the tools needed to eventually evict her.
If you’re looking for new ways to approach anxiety management, please feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m happy to discuss the ways yoga and mindfulness can help and, if it’s right for you, schedule a private session to explore options specific to you. The information provided is NOT meant to replace that of a medical professional, but is offered as an additional practice to any current care you may be receiving. If you are in crisis or you think you may have an emergency, please call your doctor or 911 immediately.