GunshotsWho could it be?I picture a student in ill-fitting clothing and unwashed hair.What kind of rifle? Is this how I'll die?What will I say when I beg for my life? I stop breathing. Eyes are frantic My heart sinks like lose change.I Imagine all my classmates bleeding.I'm listening for pleas or screaming.Lock the doors! Turn off the lights!Everyone's going to die! It's nothing. It was just a door being closed. Adrenaline is still flooding my body,Toes are tingling,Head is buzzing A door closed A door closed and I stopped breathing. A door closed and I'm the dumbest person alive! A door closed and my anxiety ruptured inside of me like a shotgun shell. This happens all dayEvery day Every continuos hemorrhaging day Regardless of time and regardless of rain I am paranoid and scared and feel like I'm crazy.Under a concrete slab of ten tons of anxiety. I confide in my mother She's the eye of a storm and still brings me comfort even at 18.I tell her that I can't stay focused in school.I can't sleep because I just know someone followed me home.Whenever I drive I imagine I'll die.I can't eat because I'm afraid of who might have touched my food before me.I hold my little brother extra close before he leaves for school each dayJust incase the lonely student with a gun hurts him too. My brain has been held captive by an intruder with no purpose.Constant fear and vulgar images are plaguing my mind.I want to yank the steering wheel because a telephone pole to the skull would hurt less than this endless game of keep away with my sanity. For the first time since I was 14, I see my mother cry. She rushes me to urgent care, I can't stop shaking I bite the inside of my cheek so roughly I taste blood.A waiting roomThe air is stale A coughing Hispanic women and an overweight old man They take note of my tear streaked face and look away A smiling Doctor and a quick but sincere handshake A ticking clockA stern yet sympathetic face A prescription for Xanex A prescription for Zoloft A backup prescription for Prozac just incase A heavy week full of side effects And now I don't feel anything Not happyNot angry Not afraid of the world I wasn't sleeping at first but I adjusted really well And I would really like to sing but I can't find the words And now I'm dependent on a chemical calm And I wish I could live with no medication. Without panic or bottomless fear.I wish I could round out the edges on my own But I can't I can't and I know I can't.And it's heavy and red hot and boiling over with regret. I no longer hear gunshots. I know it's a door.It echoes through my hollowed out brain Was it worth it?