My mental health problems began when I was a teenager. One night I suffered a major panic attack that scared the mess out of me and my mom. I honestly thought I was going to die.
I was trying to fall asleep when all of a sudden, out of nowhere, this overwhelming sense of terror just enveloped me. My heart was racing way too fast as if I had just finished running a marathon. My hands began to seize up into fists that I couldn’t pry open.
What was going on? Was I dying? I was scared to death and didn’t know why. Why was this happening to me?
I remember my mom telling me that when she placed her hand over my heart to see how fast my heart was racing it felt like “a herd of horses galloping.” She tried to pry open my fists but to no avail.
She took me to the doctor where he diagnosed it as a severe anxiety attack and prescribed me an anti-anxiety medication. This particular medication, however, INCREASED my panic attacks. I was having them multiple times a day! So I was placed on another medicine which seemed to help.
After suffering from these panic attacks, I fell into a deep depression. I couldn’t understand why I was suffering from these attacks. I was in my senior year of high school. This was supposed to be the greatest year of my high school career. I was on the verge of becoming an adult!
But no, I enjoyed none of that. Instead, I lost so much weight that my sister and my mom were convinced I had an eating disorder but I didn’t. I just stopped eating because I just wasn’t hungry. My jeans sagged on me, I retreated to my room most days and kept to myself. I hated life at this point.
And the only thing I can say is that the panic attack is what started my downward spiral. And it gets worse….much worse…..but that’s a story for another day.