NFL Star’s Battle With Anxiety
Anxiety can give a horrifying sensation of feeling like you can’t breathe, and too much scrutiny, it’s not only a mental illness, but it can most certainly cause tremendous physical discomfort as well. For me, the minute I get anxious, my palms will sweat so much I wouldn’t want to start shaking any hands if you catch my drift. Your heart starts pounding out of your chest, and all you can think about is the thought of crawling out of your own skin. But to some, it can get a lot worse; then your health comes into play.
Just recently, a Philly Eagles player by the name of Brandon Brooks had a positive response from his fans after speaking about leaving the football game last Sunday early regarding his severe anxiety. He admitted that he has a “typical routine” of morning vomiting before every game, but on Sunday, November 24th, things took a turn for the worst for Brooks and his anxiety. He told reporters that he was usually capable enough to get it under control before the game would start, but this past Sunday, he rose to feel even more nauseated as the game progressed. He began to vomit on the sidelines and was forced to exit the game within the first quarter. He had to leave a game twice before in 2016, so this isn’t the first time his anxiety acted up during a game.
Brooks signed a four-year, $54.2 million contract extension two weeks ago, and he said the pressure of living up to that deal most certainly triggered his recent lapse of anxiety attacks. The thought of upholding his contract agreement put a severe amount of pressure on Brooks’s shoulders. Letting anybody down on his team became a significant fear of his.
But ever since he opened up about his condition on Twitter, Brooks has received an enormous amount of positive feedback not only from fans but from those who can relate to his struggles as well. His goal for being vulnerable was to make sure everyone knew he wasn’t ashamed regarding needing help and to ask others who have a mental illness to get help too. His hope is for those who have any mental disorder won’t be embarrassed. He’d rather be a voice than to ignore it any longer.
Not only did he relay that he wasn’t ashamed of his daily struggles with anxiety, but Brooks clearly stated what made him upset was being pulled from the game and not being there for his teammates, after knowing they lost the game against the Seahawks. When speaking on the subject, he could’ve left it as a vague “illness” and went about preparing for this week’s game in Miami, but instead, Brooks was open and transparent about what had transpired. He wants his vulnerability to make a difference in the lives of others struggling with the same thing as him. And to me, I couldn’t be more proud of him. He’s showing others how to be a modern hero today, and I couldn’t think of anything more admirable than that.