I cannot believe this, what I am doing, this is just so crazy. After so many years of having and still learning to live with anxiety attacks, how do I put in words to describe how it feels to have one? I simply say to people if I could describe in words how or what I feel, I most definitely would not be suffering from this right now. Unless you have had one you cannot judge a person. I am living proof, and just looking at me you would never know anything was even different. It all started one day back in 1993, there I was a nineteen years old, entering that new place we adults call “Life” and you older teens call “Freedom”, as a single teen mother of a two and a half year old little boy, living at home with a overbearing mother and if that wasn’t enough I was about to enter my first year at the local community college, my stress was at a all-time high that I’d ever exhibited in my young life.
It all started this one day, a day that seemed just like it was an ordinary Thursday, however, it ended up being a day that I would never forget or be able to change for the rest of my life! I remember it like it was yesterday. I believe this was the second worst day of my existence. It’s going to sound funny where I was of all places on a “night out” to relax with the girls, where else but at Bingo with 2 of my other “teen mom” friends. There we are setting up our bingo cards, and BOOM, out of nowhere, my chest starts to tighten, I can’t catch my breathe, my mind starts to race, my palms are all sweaty. I’m thinking to myself. “What is going on? Am I having a heart attack? Am I dying? I’m only nineteen I’m to young to die; please this cannot be happening. I still have my whole life ahead of me. My son needs me to raise him, I’m just starting college.”
I tried to remain calm but that was not happening so I decided to tell my friends that something was wrong with me. They had noticed I wasn’t acting my usual bubbly self, but was not sure what was going on. I tried to explain but that only made it worse. I was so grateful that one of my friends had experience with my illness and knew exactly how to help me, as her sister suffered from the same thing. She told me to try and remain calm while she called my mother to come and get me. When I got home, I continued feeling ill, and to me, I just seemed to be getting sicker by the moment. My mother was being very uncompassionate which was making me feel even more vulnerable to my symptoms. After nearly two hours, I still was not getting any better so I decided it was time to go to the emergency room. When I arrived the doctors were familiar with what I was experiencing, which made me feel a little bit calmer at the time. They gave me some medication to help me with my situation and referred me to a doctor that could better help me for future care.
When I did end up getting home from the hospital needless to say, it was a very long sleepless night; I could not wait to call the doctors to get help with my new found problem. Seeing as I did not get any sleep I was already wide awake when the office opened and after I explained to them what I had been through the night before they made an emergency appointment for me. I met with a psychologist named Connie Clark she was such a nice lady. I went into detail with her what had entailed the night before, she explained to me that what I went through was not uncommon, and to not feel weird or out of place. A lot of people go through this and considering all that I had going on in my life could be a good reasons why I suddenly starting getting these. People learn to live with them and cope, and then some people let them overcome their life, which one would I be is the question? On that day she prescribed me some medications that would help me cope and keep my mind focused for the time and made weekly follow up appointments with her. The next few days were crucial…