It began in 1983 when my youngest son was born. I was 30 years old with a 5 year old, 3 year old and a newborn. I woke up one day and couldn't get out of bed. My husband had just started a new job because his old company closed down. I was married in 1978 and my mom died 6 months before my wedding. She couldn't wait to see me married and have grandchildren. My mom was sick most of my life. She had lupus and back then they didn't even know lupus existed. At 12 years old I started to take over all the cooking and cleaning, the laundry and ironing. My younger sister was taken in by an aunt. So it was just me and dad. Mom was in the hospital more than she was out. She suffered terribly. The year before my marriage, she had finally started to feel better. All the new drugs and stuff were finally helping her.
But unfortunately she left us in January of 1978. She was 47 years old.
My panic attacks were undiagnosed for almost a year. Until I found a wonderful physologist who started me on medication immediately. I was a mess. I couldn't stand to be in the house with my 3 children alone. It terrifed me. I would walk around in a daze not knowing what was wrong.
I was in the ER 4 or 5 times, had heart tests, blood tests etc. Everything came back okay. The symptoms were all the same as stated, heart palps, stomach trouble, lost about 25 pounds, looked awful, blurry vision, felt like I wasn't there, ears ringing, couldn't sleep, dizziness. The dizziness was the
worst. I can still remember taking my 5 year old to kindergarten with my 2 small ones beside me being in a daze. Some days when know one could stay with me, I would just get the kids in the car and drive around all day until my husband came home from work. I had no family around except my husband. I would have to call him home from work just to stay with me. We thought he would lose his job but actually and thank God they understood. I also was diagnosed with OCD which I got when I took over my mom's work.
Slowly the meds worked and I felt better. It took about 2 years for me to feel normal. Panic attacks come out of nowhere. They rule your life and you can't help it. They paralize you. Make you physically sick. But 23 years later more doctors are understanding them. And you do need meds. I am still taking the same meds I started with 23 years ago. I am 53 now, my kids are adults who have a very attached relationship to me. They must remember a little when I was going through this period of time, although they were young. They also suffer from panic attacks. They are not on any medication because I taught them how to talk yourself out of one. We became a very close family from this and I am glad that this one positive thing came out of all my suffering. It's easy to say don't worry, you will feel better. But for that person who is suffering, it feels like the end of the world to them. For those who suffer from anxiety and panic attacks, seek help, get on meds. I will probably stay on meds for the rest of my life. I NEVER want to feel those feelings again. Keep your mind strong and remember panic attacks will not kill you. Linda