In the beginning of my struggles with anxiety, I was devastated about how I was feeling all of a sudden. I felt like a different person, unable to feel normal, feeling disconnected from reality, and feeling unsure of everything I believed before. It was a very bizarre sensation, especially at the beginning stages, and even at times, I still feel bizarre, although I’m so used to feeling this way that I forgot what it feels like to “feel normal”. Can you feel me? 🙂
I also had a plummeting of my iman and difficulty concentrating in prayer, and feeling depressed and demotivated to keep learning about Islam, as well as memorizing Quran. Shaitan was making the religion so difficult on me, and I was feeling overburdened with life overall, let alone Islam as a comprehensive religion.
I was suffering on a daily basis, trying my utmost to simply “survive” till the end of the day, I remembered all the sheikhs and speakers and stories of the salaf (early generation muslims) and how they had amazing lives, and had so much iman and khushu’, and as if they were living in paradise on earth. And the other speakers mentioning that, “If you are muslim, you are the happiest in the world.”
So the question that started plaguing me at the time was, “Now that I have anxiety disorder, does that mean I’m prevented from experiencing a contented life? I can’t feel iman anymore?”
After all, I was living in agony day to day. This idea made me more depressed and made me feel I’m messed up, both in religion as well as this life.
Well brothers and sisters, I have amazing news for you. The reality is, it IS very possible to be anxious as well as experience amazing feelings of khushu’ and iman. Speaking from personal experience, I have enjoyed amazing emotions of taqwa, khushu’, love of Allah. The emotions of which nothing else in this world would ever compare to. The type of stuff that really makes you praise Allah from the depths of your heart. And all this while I am suffering with anxiety disorder! I don’t say this to make any of you feel deficient, no way! I say this because I am just like you. I say this to hope to relate to you, and to give you hope that if I’m able to feel close to Allah, with all my issues with anxiety and self esteem, then why can’t you with your own emotional issues with stress and anxiety feel the same thing? I am the news reporter sent to you, bringing you this amazing newsflash.
You can use anxiety disorder as a motivator to really work on your heart, to dig deep inside your soul and to explore your emotions that are locked up inside, and then release them to your Creator, no matter what they may be. Allah looks at our efforts, and we are not held into account for the circumstances we were placed in growing up. Anxiety Disorder was not a choice we made to have. It was not our choice that we believed what we did as children, who didn’t know any better. So why would we be prevented from being able to excel in Islam?
Whatever the problems we are dealing with internally, what we do need to do is be truthful with ourselves, so we can be truthful with how we feel with our Creator. We’ve covered up our painful emotions because they didn’t feel good and we didn’t know what to do with them. But let’s try to release them to the One who cares about us more than anybody else on this planet. And I want to see some comments on this post now or in the future about the progress you are making with this.