An introduction, AND a thank-you

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New Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 1/22/2007 6:06 PM (GMT -6)   
First off, the thank-you, because I feel I have FINALLY found a place where I can talk about what's going on in my life without people looking at me like I'm either crazy or trying to get attention, and now I realize that its not "all in my head", and that there ARE others out there who both understand, and are experiencing the same thing!! So THANK YOU...bless you....the peace of mind THIS brings is so important to me.

Now my introduction... An apology in advance if its a bit long, but I just have a lot to get "off my chest."

I'm Dy, 35 years old, single, living in British Columbia.

A bit of background - I'm deaf, having lost my hearing from a bout of meningitis when I was 9 years old. I was in a coma for 3 1/2 weeks, and after recovering, I was told by my doctor that things could happen "down the road" as a result of complications stemming from the meningitis. Other than mild dyslexia, and hyperactive hormones (resulting in finally having a hysterectomy 2 years ago because of complications) I've been fine.

I received a Cochlear Implant in 2005 and in all honesty, I'm happier than I've ever been in my life! I can HEAR again!! I can listen to music, talk on the phone, have conversations with complete strangers, and its like my life was given back to me. I'm head over heels in love (albeit its long distance until finances make it possible for me to move), and if you were to ask me how I feel emotionally/physicall I'd say "on top of the world!"


March of 2006 I was diagnosed with type II diabetes, a peptic ulcer, and my migraines (which I'd suffered from since my bout of meningitis) started getting worse and worse - all the usual migraine medications (axert, amerge, imitrex) simply stopped working - they said I'd developed an immunity to them. So I was switched to injectable Toradol if my migraines got really out of control, as well as the pill form, and Reglan for the associated nausea). Metformin 500mg 2x a day for the diabetes, and Nexium for my ulcer.

I started having panic attacks in May 2006, out of the blue. Never had them before, and my first reaction was that I was having a heart attack - so my Mother took me to the hospital (I rent a suite from them, built in their basement - gotta love big houses!!)

The Dr's at the hospital said I was stressed out (from WHAT, I had no clue!) and to take it easy, and in the meantime talk to my family doctor - which wasn't a possibility as he had just retired and his clinic had yet to find a replacement. In the meantime, the "temporary" doctor whom was working there, took all of 5 minutes to look at me, listen to what I told him and simply said "here take these pills and come back in 4 months," and wrote me a prescription for Effexor. That was IT. No tests to see WHY I was having the attacks, or if there was any underlying condition or anything. Needless to say, I left the Doctor's office feeling like I was a fool.

The Effexor seemed to help for the first month and a half, then my attacks started coming in what I call 'roller coaster form" - one after another, each lasting longer, making me an utter basket case. When this happened I'd lose control (I'm normally a VERY level headed person which is why this bothers me so much) I'd start bawling my eyes out, feeling like it was the end of the world, and at the same time terrified of *something*... and they'd just keep coming and coming.... Then there'd be the residual effects. Irritiability, sleepiness, mood swings, and cognitive problems. I was in college at the time - retaking my high school physics/calculus classes, and I found that after the attacks, I'd lose the ability to concenrate.

Normally, I can hold my own with mathematics, while I'm no great scholar, I manage. I can memorize and rattle off formulas and how to use them with no problem. Yet after an attack, I couldn't even add 1 and 1, let alone try to figure out quadratic equations, or physics experiments. I couldn't even use my calculator! I simply "couldn't remember" how to make it work.

I went back to the clinic and they had finally found a replacement for my previous Doctor. He listened to me, and when he heard that I'd been just slapped on Effexor he hit the roof, ranting and raving "For heavens sakes you don't just throw PILLS at people without finding out what's wrong!!!". He made me an immediate appointment with a psychologist in order to have a bunch of tests done, and somebody who knows how to deal with this kind of condition. At least finally somebody was listening.

My psychologist (shrink?) first off scheduled a 24 hour urine collection test to check my neurotransmitter levels, saying he thought my attacks sounded more like seizures, especially the cognitive effects I had (being unable to add, or re-reading the same passage in a book 10 times and not remembering it)

He upped my Effexor to 225 mg/day, along with .5mg Xanax to take when the panic attacks wouldn't stop, and .5mg Klonopin to help me sleep at night (I'd wake up in mid-attack quite often, and my sleep patterns were shot to heck.)

I don't know if its the Effexor, but there have been a lot of "side effects" that I (and my family) have noticed. Most prominent a "I dont' give a darn" attitude about everything in life, I'm tired all the time, I could easily sleep 20 hours a day if I could. I have no appetite, which makes dealing with my diabetes very difficult, my sex drive disappeared, and while I'm usually neat and tidy, my living area is a mess, and again "I don't really care." - this is NOT like me!

The urine test came in clear - as well as my blood test - he said I simply had 'run of the mill anxiety disorder.' He really didn't have any clear answers as to WHY it started at age 34 when I was in all intents and purposes, feeling the best I ever have (he said it just sometimes happens like that), and that the best thing to do was to keep taking the Effexor and then he'd begin weaning me off it.

From Dec 23 until this last Friday I was attack-free. It was WONDERFUL, then Friday afternoon the roller-coaster started and hasn't stopped. Usually when I start getting repeat attacks, the Xanax stops it. It hasn't. I sit here crying my head off, waiting for another to hit, wondering if I'm going to have to deal with this for the rest of my life. I feel like a prisoner - I depend on my Mom to take me anywhere I need to go because I'm too afraid to drive (2 months ago while driving to college, an attack hit and I ended up in the ditch, no damage to me or the car thankfully but I hung my keys up and I've been too scared to drive since.)

I just want my normal life back. I don't think that's too much to ask, but nobody seems to have *answers* I just get "well this sometimes happens."

Anyway..thanks for the patience, thank you for being here. I'll definitely be a regular on this board, and look forward to getting to know all of you.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 1/22/2007 6:49 PM (GMT -6)   

Thanks for introducing yourself, it's always good to hear people's stories and wow you've had an amazingly challenging life.  I'm so happy you've got the gift of hearing back.  It's a shame that anxiety and depression have turned up in your life as well.  It sounds like your new psychologist might be a useful person to help you fight back. 

I know it seems bleak right now...especially as it's all so sudden.  I remember sitting and staring at my statistics exam for two hours in Uni, reading the same problem over and over and still unable to comprehend.  Now, with counselling and medication I can do pretty much anything I used to do.  Sometimes better!!  I know you will get some great advice I'll wish you the best, keep you chin up and try and remeber everything you've already overcome.  You are strong and will get through this. 

Dance like no-one's watching,
Love Thy Neighbour, just don't get caught!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 934
   Posted 1/22/2007 7:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to Healing Well. Know that you are not alone. *HUGS*

I hadn't had a panic attack for about 3 weeks up until last night, and it was BAD. It went on for an hour because I tried to drive to a city that was a half hour from my house. Well, the Ativan was NOT helping. (Ativan is like xanax) I thought it would but even 2 was not going to do the trick. UGH I was just a mess.

I wanted to just slam on the breaks in the middle of the highway... get out and start screaming at how panicky I felt. I just wanted to drive into the ditch. *sighs* I hated the way I felt and it wouldn't stop even when I turned around to go home. For the rest of the night I just felt strange.

We have good weeks and bad weeks.... good days and bad days... but I try to just enjoy the good days as best as I can, and try to forget about the bad ones... like last night per se...

The more we embrace the good times... the more we can enjoy our lives... despite this disorder...

I have had the "I don't give a darn" attitude for a while too, but then again I've always been that way, but now I'm starting to change a bit. (or maybe I am getting worse LOL)

Try to get some counselling maybe or try meditating, maybe get in tune with your inner self and figure out what's important to you.

I hope the Effexor and Xanax works out for you, just remember to give it a bit of time. A new dosage of an antidepressant may take a couple weeks to kick in.

I had no appetite whatsoever on my Lexapro, but then I started to MAKE myself eat, and now I eat as many times as I want in a day.

Try that at first, just making yourself eat small things throughout the day, and your appetite will eventually come back. If it doesn't, talk to your doctor about perhaps switching meds down the road, as Effexor may not be the answer, but another anti-depressant could be the answer for you.

Again, welcome to Healing Well. *HUGS*

"Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars."

DX: Panic Disorder, Depression, TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder), Chronic Migraines
RX: Lorazepam (1 MG a day), Lexapro (20 MG a day), Tylonel for the TMJ and Migraines
Help support Healing Well and its' forums and chatrooms... donate today....

Elite Member

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 1/23/2007 6:17 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to HW
Another Canuck glad you found us
I am in Ontario
Sweetie the best thing i can say to you is this site here is the best support group you will find the ppl are the best and will always be here for you eh
You were great at your intro and I am able to connect in some areas............
Please do keep coming back so we can get to know you and you us
Sounds like you are having serious Panic attacks and mat need benzo increased would talk to doc about that firsrt though ok '
Be wll and KNOW you are no longer alone in this battle
Take care

    Contribute today to support Healing Well Forums...Donate @
 Never compromise your self nor your dignity... 
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 Co Mod @ Crohns                                     
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 Moderator @ Anxiety/Panic

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 789
   Posted 1/23/2007 8:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello neecy2k
I just wanted to give you a ((((((Big Hug)))))) and welcome you to our HW family. I also would love to commend you on everything you have over come in your life you are a very strong women so never let anyone convience you your not. We will always be here to listen and for you to lean on and it won't take you long to get to know everyone. Please post often we look forward to hearing from you.
I have an illness, My illness don't have me.
Being happy doesnt mean everything's perfect.It means you've decided to see beyound the imperfrctions!God didn't promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, sun without rain, but HE did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears & light for the way                                        



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