The Anxiety Diaries: 5 Panics in 1 Day? Yep.

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This picture above is by far the best depiction of the thoughts that go through your mind during the beginning of a panic attack. 

The past three days have been hell, I won’t lie. Even talking about or thinking about these major panic attacks I have been having, and the tunnel vision, heart racing, chest pains and shortness of breath comes back. So it’s hard to blog about, but I feel the need to document it. I have a feeling a therapist is the next person I will see outside of my house.

It all started about 3 days ago, when I was going for a walk with my dogs. That’s it. A walk with my dogs. Walking anywhere is a bit of a struggle, but mostly with general anxiety, and not these major attacks. On that day, however, I got a major attack after swallowing my water wrong and dry heaving, which made me feel like I was choking, and it just escalated from there.

The following day I got another one when walking to the store. This was one of the “mini heart attack” ones where I get it for about 10 seconds in a single location, usually somewhere I have had a panic attack previously. No surprise, this was in the exact spot I had the one the day before. It’s like you’re walking through a tunnel of anxiety, but once you get out of it, everything is fine. So that’s basically what happened. My entire body got weak and it felt like I was crawling through the tunnel, but I made it home.

Today I experienced 5 of them. FIVE. I would cry, but that gives me heart palpitations which we all know just makes everything worse. The first was when I as again, walking to the store. I thought it would be no big deal because I didn’t have any anxiety this morning. It didn’t matter. As soon as I walked out the door, I felt it coming. On the way there, I had the mild anxiety I generally have while walking. And then it got worse. After about 1/4 mile (which is halfway to the store) I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to make it home. I had to reach out for things at every opportunity, to brace myself. (Which makes me think I have agoraphobia). I grabbed telephone poles, gates, fences, even tree branches. Anything.

Once I was in the store, I was fine, but then I had my 2nd one that day on the way home. This was bad. I actually felt like I was going to pass out. I grabbed my phone and was about to call someone to come get me, but I didn’t think anyone would be available. So I just ran. This is how you know it’s serious. I don’t run. Anywhere. I can barely make these walks without being winded. But with 3 heavy bags in my hand, I ran as fast as I could the 1/2 mile home, including up a super steep hill to get there.

Number three attack of the day occurred about 2 hours later when I was attempting to take the dogs for a walk. We made it about a minute through our housing community before I picked them both up and ran back home. Again, similar to agoraphobia, I just felt like I was too far from home (was so close I could see my house still) and had no control over my surroundings. When I got home, I sat on the steps and let them pee in the yard, but I felt bad about cutting the walk short.

The biggest surprise today was that the last two panic attacks were at home. I almost never have them at home. Probably not even 1% of the time. They always happen outside the home, when I feel like I can’t control where I am, especially when I’m out alone. The first was when I was just sitting at my computer, working, and all of a sudden I was sure my heart was no longer beating. I can’t describe it too much, as it is getting me all anxious and sweaty just thinking about it. The next was in the shower, which I also had to cut short. Seriously? I can’t even take a damn shower now?!

The ones at home got so bad that when I was in the living room going from one side to the other where there is nothing but empty space, I felt those “mini heart attacks” just trying to get past that empty space. What the hell? I think it’s therapy time. This is insane. And the more I am having, the worse it is getting.

So that was a fun time. I have been looking up and asking for advice on natural treatments in the meantime. So far, I am going to be trying mindfulness, yoga, chamomile and green tea, lavender oil, and counting backwards. Any other recommendations?

 

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16 thoughts on “The Anxiety Diaries: 5 Panics in 1 Day? Yep.

  1. Oh Jenn, this isn’t good. I don’t know anything about panic attacks, but they sound awful. Have you looked into seeing a therapist yet? Sorry I can’t be in anyway helpful. I still wanted to comment though and say bleugh, I hope you can get them under control soon x

  2. First there is and app that really helps your brother. 2. When I feel one coming on I say out loud NO. than I force myself to breathe deep. My Panic is brought on by short shallow breath when I feel nervous.

  3. Jesus, Jenn! The dread I feel just reading about your experiences… is NOTHING compared to how it must feel for you. I truly cannot imagine how awful and paralyzing it must be. I hope between the therapist and whatever treatments you decide on, you find some relief from these anxiety attacks.

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  5. I am sorry you are struggling with this, I have no clue what it’s like but I can tell it’s horrible. Be careful with green tea. I know you are a coffee drinker but the stimulant in green tea is a completely different stimulant that the one in coffee. I always had a hard time drinking green tea because it gave me strange sensations in my stomach and made my heart race. It may work for you, I just thought I would share my experience. Hopefully things improve over the next few days. Congrats on making it to the store today. Who cares what your neighbors think, if they think you are crazy then they will most likely leave you alone. Bonus, right?

  6. St johns wart is supposed to help with depression and anxiety. I tried it recently but I didn’t give it a fair shot. I think i will try it again. I read that you can’t take it with SSRI anti depressants though just so u know. I didn’t know if you are on any but just in case.

  7. Ugh! I’m so sorry that is happening! I have to take antianxiety meds. I’ve been having them more often lately because if this weird food allergy. An allergic reaction feels a lot like a panic attack, and I’m an overachiever so I always do both at once!

  8. I’m so, so sorry you’re dealing with this!!! I’ve been there, I know how miserable it is! Seeing a therapist changed my life in AMAZING ways– I hope you can see one soon! I have my life back now. I know you will too!

  9. Pingback: April Wrap-Up: Freelance Writing, Spring Crafts, and Panic Attacks | It's a Jenn Thing

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