I could almost feel my anxiety washing away for a few minutes when I first found this message board!
I'm Lacey, 24yrs old. Married & mama of two. I just wanted to share my story (beware this may be long) and hope that some of you can offer support or share similar anxiety attack experiences so I know I'm not alone with some of these!
I guess my story would start in 2006. I was 21yrs old, got married in October & lost my 3yr old son in November. He passed away from Meningococcal Meningitis & was buried exactly a month from the day that he & my dad walked me down the aisle in my wedding.
It was in late September/ early October 2007 that I first experience anxiety. I felt a heart palpitation, and this being the first I'd ever experienced I searched the web (of course only to find information that I should go to the E.R. right away) so I called my mom to tell her I thought I was experiencing anxiety. I felt on edge. Then things spiraled out of control a little bit. Well, alot! lol I couldn't sleep, couldn't eat, my stomach was in such knots that I couldn't keep things down most of the time, racing heart, some heart palpitations, felt like I couldn't get a "satisfied" breathe, etc. I had acid reflux from not eating, felt like my skin was crawling, it was horrible. I finally begged (literally) my husband to take me to the E.R. after this had gone on for a number of days. I was bawling because I thought I was going to die, I was telling my husband through the tears that I didn't want to die. Thankfully he has delt with some severe anxiety during his life as well, so he understands. So he took me to the E.R. hoping that they'd talk to me a little bit. Well they had me do an EKG & blood work to rule out heart problems & a blood clot. Both came back with nothing wrong, gave me some xanax in my IV & a temporary prescription & sent me on my way. I still worried that my heart was going to stop & I would die, as my son went into cardiac arrest & we watched them try to resuscitate him. STILL feeling anxiety & unable to "get a grip" I went to my family Dr. two days in a row! The second day I was so worked up that both my B.P. #'s were over 100! So he spent time talking to me, gave me B.P. meds & a prescription for anxiety (don't remember the name.) I never ended up taking the anxiety meds because I let myself read the possible side effects & refused to take them. My mom works in a Pharmacy & she even explained that if only ONE person has that side effect, they have to put it in the info. Still wouldn't take it. Finally, the worst anxiety attack of my life, probably lasting around 2wks, ended out of nowhere.
Last Spring I got pregnant with my second son & delivered him in November. I had a few bouts of anxiety while I was pregnant, but nothing as severe as how it was in the beginning. My son decided to arrive 3wks early & spent a week in the NICU. After he came home was when I had another bout of strong anxiety. I was having, normal bleeding after the birth of my son, but out of nowhere I started thinking I was urinating blood, that I'd have to go to the hospital & find out I had a kidney problem, and that I would die. It took about a week or so to get completely out of that anxiety attack as well.
This time, I'd be noticing some extra phlegm in my throat & was clearing it alot during the day. My anxiety this time has give me the "unable to get a satisfied breathe" sensation off and on & ever since I've been paranoid that I have pneumonia, or something horrible that I'm going to die from.
I hate that I can't get over it! I've gotten to the point, where I can know, that this is my anxiety manifesting itself on my body, but I can't get my brain to stop telling me that their is something wrong! I think I've been worried about every organ in my body. I thought I was going to have a heart attack or some heart disease, kidney disease, liver problems, a brain tumor or aneurysm, & most recently, some sort of lung problem. Oh, and cancer. If I find a bruise on my body, I worry that I have cancer. Grr,
During times of bad anxiety, it keeps me awake. A few days ago I went to lay down & woke an hour later. I tried to force myself to stay in bed, but couldn't anymore & that's when I had really bad anxiety. Which is one of the worst I'd had since my first experience.
I will say that I'm proud of myself for coming as far as I have in dealing with the anxiety. It seems like I have one really huge panic attack each year where I want to beg my husband to take me to the hospital. Other times it's just little anxiety problems where I'll get a stomach ache & worry obsessively about something. But like I said, the little ones mostly effect my stomach rather than anything else. When I'm actually able to not focus on my anxiety I feel perfectly fine. The biggest problem I have with my anxiety is to not dwell on it. How do I not dwell on something that I think will cause my early demise? I don't want to feel this way, I wish I'd never started having anxiety or I wish I weren't this bad. My mom thinks I'm so afraid to die because my son was so young & I feel like if he can die, I can easily too as well.
Thank you for reading, if you made it this far. I really just needed to get that out & off my shoulders (note that I have been breathing fine since I've been writing this & not worried about anything lol) If you've felt any of the same sensations, please let me know! Or if you have any advice, tips or support to offer I'd must appreciate that!