Dissecting the Panic

Yesterday was the last day of physical therapy for Bunny. Of course I was elated with joy at the prospect of a more fluid schedule. The night before, however, Squirt began complaining of similar foot pain. 

That is what triggered that night's panic attack; the thought of starting all over again with the physical therapy appointments for the next child. It was a doozy that kept me up all night paralyzed in fear and anxiety. 

I get that way sometimes. I call them panic attacks because that feels right to me. I've never been formally diagnosed or anything, although my doctor is WELL AWARE of anxiety issues with me, I assure you. Anyway, I just get panicky. Over normal stuff, sometimes. Mostly little things; Like a tick in a ceiling fan. 

This afternoon's panic attack was courtesy of the rising temperatures. It's just so darned hot. I'm going to have to sit in a hot car and wait for the kids to be out of school. I'm sweating again, just walking around the house- Ugh. I can no longer wear hoodies which have the kangaroo pocket in the front that most conveniently carries my phone & keys. (And hides my muffin top) WHAT DO I DO WITH MY PHONE & KEYS NOW?! Summer is pressing down on the place and I'm already getting claustrophobic. I miss winter.   

When I feel this way I am impossible to reason with. (Though The Husband has tried) It usually comes on at night as I'm trying to fall asleep, that's when the panic has the easiest time of finding its way in through the cracks. One night I tried to visualize how I felt, mostly because I didn't realize yet that I was indeed panicking. It felt odd, but that my head and my lungs were slowly drifting apart, being divided by a thunderous mountain range of jagged cliffs. These jungled peaks wet with heavy blankets of clouds cutting off the easy path that once existed between my chest and my mouth. I can feel the gap widen as each breath is more strained. 

I have to lay there in the disconnect. With my fears and worst case scenarios until the feeling passes or I fall asleep. Whichever comes first. Talking about it only seems to make it worse, compounding the problem by freaking another person out. So I sit with my creeping mountain range. I try and watch for wildlife through the trees. It'd be nice to at catch sight of a monkey swinging around in the canopy. Or maybe a hippo yawning lazily in a river? 

When the clouds dissipate I can see clearer once more. (Although a glance at the forecast can bring the panic closer to the surface) and I forget all the nuances. I wouldn't be writing about it here if I hadn't pawed around for my phone in the dark and typed out some thoughts. Purely because I thought they were spectacularly interesting at the time. Coming to the end of this post and I'm not so sure... but feel too invested to simply delete all the words and pretend it never happened. 

Sometimes I make it weird here, guys. Sometimes I talk in excruciating detail about panic attacks and it isn't the least bit funny. But thanks for reading! 


  1. I was having a panic attack yesterday at work and I didn't even recognize it. I just didn't get it - I was shaky and freaked out and kind of sweaty, and until I felt the catch in my chest like I was going to cry I did not even realize what was going on. I can't even say why - I've had a whole lot of panic attacks in my life. Once the Xanax kicked in I was way freaked out that I was so far into it before realizing what was going on.

  2. I can SO relate. Being in bed at night is the worst time for me. Unless I am totally exhausted, I spin. I freak out. Then I get upset that A can sleep while I am FRAUGHT WITH FEELINGS. It's awful. I'm sorry you struggle too. Xo