I’m really good at remaining calm for others.
In sticky situations, with health scares, or if they are doubting themselves…I am a Rock. When it comes to myself, uh….not so much. And I am not sure why.
I recently had some “unexpected ” questions about my body come up at a routine appointment. I was “logically” calm, but my anxiety took over and then…..I traveled down the rabbit hole, at a very rapid speed.
I heard the Dr. say it was probably nothing, but I then proceeded to research the internet. Big mistake. I was reading an article on my phone, when my daughter looked over and said,”Mom, what are you doing?” I said, “Reading”. She replied, “Weird, you are pushed back into your chair”.
Well, friends, yes. I was. I was in the beginning Stages of one of my awesome panic attacks. My body was Tense and I probably had eyes the size of flying saucers.
And I thought…”Hey, I remember you “. That racing heart, the burning face, the absolute panic that something horrific will happen at any moment. To me.
I used to wake each morning, as a child, heart racing and in a sweat…sometimes before my feet touched the floor. You see, I never knew what I was waking up to each day.
I grew up in an alcoholic home and that is a very scary, uncertain place to be.
Fight or flight for me.
As a child, I thought I was sweating because it was hot in my room. Maybe I’m shaky inside because of the hunger. And maybe, just maybe, my heart is racing because I had a nightmare I couldn’t recall.
But, as I grew into an adult, got pregnant, had babies, had health scares, got injured, and at 42, had wisdom tooth surgery……I figured it out.
It was a very familiar feeling each time I struggled with something unknown in regards to my health. Will I be ok? What if? What if? What if?
And down the rabbit hole I go.
I recently accepted the fact that I have anxiety and panic attacks. Health related issues (in regards to myself) are my triggers. I did some reading and found that they can be triggered by anything for anyone. Unfortunately, adults that suffered childhood trauma are more vulnerable to them. And I fall into that category. I do recall being ill with different things as a child and feeling very frightened and helpless. Mom and Dad are drunk, not home, fighting…and here I sit, burning up with a fever, can’t swallow, and the list goes on. I am guessing it’s part of my childhood experiences.
Great. Another hurdle to overcome from my past.
This last time, I really did a number on myself.
I felt like I was consumed by fear. I felt like my body was on fire and I could not get the awful thoughts of death and the worst case scenario out of my head.
Then, I went in for that appointment. Calm, actually. I think because I was completely drained. And guess what?
All was well…. perfectly normal and healthy. Praise God. But then I realized, I wasted 4 days of my life, my joy, my happiness…..dwelling on a made up scenario?????
Yup. Once again.
To explain how dramatic anxiety makes your mind…here’s a random example.
You cut your finger on a sharp piece of metal. It gets infected. Most “reasonable” people would bandage it and watch it. Anxiety pushes you to wonder if the infection will go into your blood, and you can’t afford a hospital stay, and what about your job, kids, all the plans you have made?!?!? Crazy hey?
And very, very exhausting. It paralyzes you with fear.
I became very aware of what my mind was doing this last time and even so, I feel like it won.
In talking with a friend, I said, “I just don’t understand. I have great faith in God and know He loves me and would never harm me”. What is going on? Well, part of it goes back to the last blog I wrote. “Life is calm, good, I am happy…now I wait for the bad stuff to come”.
My friend reminded me that I was out of alignment. FAITH and FEAR cannot be in the same room together. And next time, I need to choose.
I let my FEAR control my mind and my life. The very thing I have been training myself not to do.
So, I decided.
Next time, I will fight harder to let go of the old record playing in my head. Life is good and God is good.
Just because there is happiness, there doesn’t have to be trauma. I will pray harder and TRUST the plan God has for this life he has gifted to me.
I won’t be afraid and if I am, I will pray the fear away.
I share this, even, somewhat cautiously. As this is one of my darkest struggles.
I have found, however, in sharing and releasing, there is freedom.
I am real. I am broken. I am scarred. But I am perfectly made.
I laughed when reflecting on the perception of my friend…..FEAR and FAITH cannot be in the same room. That was my advice to him….not so long ago.
In order to talk the talk, I must walk the walk. I may just take a daily dose of my own advice from now on😉
And, on a more serious note….for those of you reading this, struggling with the anxiety/panic disorder demon, there is HOPE. Seek out a counselor, practice breathing techniques, workout, and don’t forget to GIVE it to GOD.
He has your best interest at heart all the time. ❤
Be strong and don’t forget to always believe in the POWER of you.
Gods got you. This, I know🦋