my anxious heart

Spring of 2015 has been busy, trying, amazing and life changing. I have been through so many emotional peaks and valleys and finalizing my senior year has been such a cathartic experience. My Anxious Heart is nothing short of my child. I have battled anxiety for a decade, and I finally have been able to capture it and expose it in the light. I want to thank every single person who has been a part of this journey. From the first, small idea to the final exhibition, this project has taught me, challenged, me and changed me. I hope it can be a source of healing for others as it has been for me. Thank you for coming to view it and please let me know if you have any feedback! I’d love to hear from you.


My Anxious Heart explores and identifies how emotionally and physically depleting general anxiety disorder can be from a personal perspective. As I have carried anxiety for the majority of my life, I’ve chosen to photographically depict this battle and its constant presence. Since it is within my own mind where anxiety is born, I have decided to interpret my roles as both instigator and victim through self portraiture.

Through this body of work, I am visually interpreting my own emotional and physical journey so that others may be able to understand this weight that so many bear in our society. The physical ramifications of the disorder, such as a racing heart, dizziness, shortness of breath and lightheadedness, frequently go unnoticed or are misinterpreted by those who have never suffered from anxiety. Although the physical symptoms make up a great deal of the disorder, the emotional outcome is exceedingly difficult to encapsulate as well. Anxiety bars the sufferer from the risk of discovery, the desire to explore new ideas, and the possibility of exiting a comfort zone. It makes sure that it will never be alone. It finds you when you’re in the midst of joy, or alone in your own mind. It is quiet and steady, reminding you of your past failures, and fabricating your future outcomes.
My interpretation of these symptoms through my images aids in the explanation of how true anxiety has the capability to drain every last drop of aspiration. This representation is achieved in the photograph with the use of black objects and materials that subtly interact within the frame. Manipulating the images in this way evokes a sense of overprotection and lingering presence. By providing these surreal images as expressions of anxiety within a realistic portrait, the viewer is guided through the internal and external struggle of a person living with this disorder. Using my own stories and experiences, I am capturing the raw essence of anxiety. Through this personal journey, I have grown and found that depicting my fears has become therapeutic, as well as a gateway for others to express their oppression and begin their own healing process.


http://www.katiejoycrawford.com

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207 thoughts on “my anxious heart

  1. I cried through this whole experience , I have never in my life been able to put into words the monster that has haunted me my whole life, it’s so hard to make someone understand what u can’t fully understand or explain yourself , this was like someone reading my a story of my life to me . everyday is a struggle , and when a loved one don’t have this struggle , they tend to think that it is them who are making you feel this way , it’s hard to make them understand that it’s not them. feeling weighed down , sad , unbearable , worthless and trapped, numb , etc is something I don’t think i will ever be relieved from . yet at the same time I still can’t seem to have learned yet to live with it fully, it’s completely crippling. i wonder sometimes y i have life if this is what it is all it is ..I struggle to breath , to feel calm , to feel like something is finally going to not make my mind break down. I’m still drowning @ 30 years old . I will never forget the images you have given my feelings , thank you thank you thank you so much from the bottom of my broken soul . may all who struggle one day find the calmness we so crave and long for . I sure hope I do

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  2. Tenho sofrido disso há um tempo e não havia reparado! meus pais vinham reparando, principalmente meu pai, ele chegou a fazer uma carta pra mim pra tentar dialogar comigo e eu fiquei irada, não concordei com nada que ele diss, discutimos e eu ainda rasgue. Isso tudo começou no inicio de 2014, assim que entrei na faculdade, sofri um acidente que me deu um susto de quase morte na academia e abandonei ela. A ansiedade de saber o futuro, se era administração o curso certo, de ser bem sucedida, conseguir um estágio e termina a faculdade com um bom emprego, conseguir pagar o curso de inglês e ter uma vida estável.. isso tudo e muitas outras coisas foram me deixando ansiosa sem eu percebe. Começaram a surgir as dores na lombar e na coluna cervical.. principalmente no pescoço, acompanhado de uma forte dor de cabeça, acompanhado com uma estafa mental, um peso na cabeça de quase cair no chão e eu achava que tudo era sinusite e dor na coluna! fui no otorrino e no ortopedista e fiz exames e tudo não deu nada. Um cansaço sem igual, um sono tremendo, não conseguia acordar cedo pra tomar um café da manhã, pra ajudar em nada n casa, pra enfrentar um trabalho.. o que todos aqui em casa jugalvam como preguiça e foi cada vez piorando e ansiedade chegando mais e eu não percebendo e “criando” mil doenças pro meu corpo e me entupindo de remédios. Comecei a ir igreja desde 05/2015 e mesmo assim a ansiedade não mudou, por que eu não sabia como amar a Deus, não tinha a fé que precisava e nem a valentia que Deus colocou no coração de cada homem e sim o medo, a insegurança e ansiedade, não descansava em Deus! Comecei a namorar tem 9 meses, agora meu namoro tá uma paz, já chorei no colo do meu namorado por tudo isso, ele é bem paciente, amável e me apoia muito. Mas o meu namoro ja teve muito problemas, desconfiança, ciúmes.. e eu passei a teleguiar os passos dele, prende, desconfiar de cada passo e só o amor e Deus está nos segurando, amém! Agora a pouco tempo, dias… eu comecei a ter dor na barriga, no pé do útero eu creio ou algo no rins não sei, na mestruação do mês passado eu fiquei sangrando dias e procurei um ginecologista e na transvaginal nada foi detectado, tudo perfeito! eu tomei antibióticos, antiflamatorios, o remédio pra cortar sangramento e com isso pra repor as forças, tomei cetrum feminino e vi muita gente falando que causava insonia e parei de tomar e achei que fosse isso, mas pelo jeito não era, e há dias eu não durmo uma noite e tô cheia de olheiras e não aguento mais isso.. vazio na mente exatamente como você disse ai, presa na minha propria mente, parece que tem um gás na mente, um espaço, um fundo Preto, uma paralisação no corpo e principalmente a noite não consigo dormir, e não sei por que! tenho tomado homeopax natural pra dormir, já tomei quase a 1 cartela inteira e não sei dizer se tem melhorado, me agarrei muito mais há Cristo, e ele e meus pais e meu namorado tem me ajudado e muito, me sustentado, principalmente a palavra de Deus! Só dormir Uma noite 15 dias ou mais, a base de metade de um rivotril! e quando durmo as vezes é pela manhã ou tarde do nada, mas a noite a minha cabeça toca músicas o tempo todo, nada me faz dormir e não consigo controlar meus pensamentos e relaxar e dormir, nem respirando melhor! vou no psicológo quinta-feira! Deus queira que eu melhore logo, assim como você também! Deus te abençoe e Leia o salmos 4 antes de dormir! adorei seu trabalho, arrasou!

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  3. Katie, I have had major,clinical depression and severe anxiety for about 10 yrs now, and when my doctors or my husband ask me about my feelings or how my anxiety feels, I just can’t find the words to describe the feelings or symptoms. The way you described anxiety was dead on!!!! Your pictures were true and the way you talked about it being debilitating was exactly what I say! You truly are amazing the way you describe this horrible disease! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!!!!

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  4. Thanks you for sharing your story. My name is Angel Ortiz I am 30 years old. I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety about 3 months ago. Since then I been searching for answer. I feel like a switch was turn on in my body and not and a good way. Feeling like you can breathe or if your throat is closing up on you. I’m dealing with the fact if this is really real or if something else other then anxiety is wrong with me. It been so struggle to say the least, I feel unhappy with life, I feel like there no light at the end of the tunnel. Again thanks for sharing your story. Best wishes

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