Why Loving A Woman With Anxiety Is Like Loving A ‘Haunted House'

"To love me is to love a haunted house."
Button Poetry

Brenna Twohy is no stranger to leaving her heart on the stage -- and she recently did it again in a riveting spoken word performance.

At the National Poetry Slam this past August, Twohy -- author of the upcoming book Forgive Me My Salt -- performed her poem called "Anxiety: A Ghost Story." In the powerful performance, Twohy compares her anxiety and panic attacks to living in a haunted house.

She describes the metaphor as if she were talking to her lover and attempting to explain what anxiety feels like for her.

"When I tell you about the ghosts that live inside my body, when I tell you I have a cemetery in my backyard and in my front yard and in my bedroom," Twohy says. "That my anxiety is a camera that shows everyone I love as bones... This is that part of the story when everyone is telling you to run."

She describes her panic as a "stubborn phantom" that will follow her for months on end. "," Twohy says. "It’s fun to visit once a year but no one wants to live there."

Towards the end of her poem, Twohy's face gets a little brighter as she says, "And you love me… you are not stupid or careless or even brave. You’ve just never seen the close up of a haunting."

Although Twohy says this love can't "cure" her, it does give her some welcomed company in her haunted house riddled with anxiety. "When you say to the ghosts, ‘If you’re staying, then you better make room.’ And we kiss against the walls that, tonight, are not shaking."

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