Hello everyone in HealingWell land...
Been a long time since I've posted, although I still check in here regularly. My overall anxiety has gotten better over the past two years but my panic attacks have been worse. They are almost always triggered by travel these days. Back in mid-September I took a two-day weekend trip down to Washington, DC with my wife to visit a couple of her friends. On the drive down I had a panic attack in the car and nearly had to pull over on I-95 (scary in itself, let me tell you!), but I took a 0.5 Klonopin and was able to continue on. Most of that weekend I was dealing with mild to moderate panic attacks.
This coming weekend, I am flying down to Florida with my wife to visit her aunt and see Kennedy Space Center and visit a few of the Disney parks. We've been down there a couple of times before and the vacations are always like life trials for me; I have never told my wife this but it's like living in hell about
75% of the time I'm there. I can barely hold down food, I don't get much sleep, and the entire time I'm alternating between acute panic and high-level anxiety. It doesn't help that I do not handle roller coasters or gravity drop rides well at all, which frustrates my wife because she loves them and she gets annoyed when I get anxious about
them. Just anticipating the start of this trip on Saturday morning is filling me with dread and every time I remind myself that I'm going on this trip I start to sweat and shake. Then I keep saying to myself, "It's only four and a half days of hell and you'll be back home again." Is that any way to look at what's supposed to be a fun vacation?
My wife is well aware of my travel anxiety and she's learned a lot about
how to deal with it over the past several years. She no longer says, "Just breathe and don't think about
it." which we all know never helps. She now usually holds me and says, "Yes, you're anxious, and that's ok." However, after a couple of days of that she starts getting angry, which of course just makes me more anxious. Thoughts in my mind immediately go to, "She thinks I'm pathetic for being scared, she's going to divorce me because why would anybody want to put up with this, etc. etc."
Any advice, similar problems, commiseration etc. would be greatly appreciated today.
Thanks all. Here's a pretty accurate emoticon for how I feel right now:
Panic and anxiety disorder
Celexa 40mg daily/Klonopin 0.5mg as needed