As I sit, I think of you. No, I really do. The faceless and nameless posters on the forum, the person who posts and explains that they are having a panic attack in real-time, and they are very frightened…..I think of you. I often wonder what happens after the post, and when the terror subsides…how long are in you in the whirlwind as I call it. I know of the situations all too well.
I have them on and off here and there these days. Long gone is the agoraphobia and such, but the straight panic, feeling like the world goes out of focus….yea, I still get those days. Sometimes I feel like I cannot get enough air in my lungs. Many times, I realize as I panic, I take in air; it bloats, presses the diaphragm and gives the sensation of not getting enough air.
Other times it is the verge of becoming dizzy or having vertigo…sometimes I actually get that…mostly it’s my inner ear though. The symptom I get the least these days it the symptom that started it all so many years ago….the sick to the stomach, terrified to throw up symptom. Seems like a lifetime ago now.
I remember the helpless feeling. Alone, scared, yet rational enough to understand that this was not normal, even though I could no longer leave my house without getting sick to my stomach and feeling like I could not swallow. I know how you feel. Yes, indeed I do. I remember it well. Want to hear about OZ? Ok….I will tell you.
In 2003 I decided that I would go see a therapist, mental doctor….that type of Doctor. As scared as I was, I got dressed, threw on a suit and walked out my door. My hands tight to the steering wheel the whole 45 minute drive. I just kept telling myself that it would all be over soon. This visit would heal me.
I walked in and sat across the desk from the Doctor. He asked me questions and I answered them. After a bit, he told me we were done for today. I was in shock! I explained that I thought he would do some test on my brain, a scan…something to see what was wrong. I was told I was a well-rounded sane individual suffering from General Anxiety Disorder. I sadly stood up and realized there was no savior, no OZ behind the curtain…I was deep in this alone. I look at the pictures of me below…all those years from then until now scrambled across the page…the years have crushed me in some ways…..Yet I am still here. If you are reading this…you are still here too…don’t ever give up…please