Hello everyone.....I am new to this thread and to this wonderful site!
I recently came to terms with my panic attacks. I used to just hock it up to being a "nervous nancy", but after reading your forum I now clearly see that what I have is a panic disorder. I was up all night trying to come to terms with this fact and trying to accept that my nearly perfect life has now come to a screeching hault because I now realize I have a problem. A problem I've been ignoring.
I remember the day it all started: about 6 years ago I got sick in the middle of nowhere during a long drive to Las Vegas with friends. I had come down with the flu bug on the long drive and needed a bathroom QUICK! It was 3 in the morning, nothing was open and there was no one in site anywhere.We all pulled off the road to the only thing in sight, an old gross Carls Jr. fast food restaurant. I ran into the bathroom while everyone waited outside in their cars. After about 30 minutes of the most horrendous bought of flu in the bathroom, no one had come in to check on me yet. I was all alone and huddled in a ball on the dirty floor of this gross bathroom. I had to start yelling out for someone to help me because I could not move. It was at that moment, I experienced my first panic attack. Just thinking back about it makes me cringe. A worker at the Carls Jr. heard me and ran out to the parking lot to fetch my husband who was the only one left waiting for me in the parking lot. Unfortunately I had two very small children with us and he could not leave them unattended in the car. He had to put both in a stroller because they could not walk yet and come in to get me. It was AWEFULL!
Ever since that fatefull night, I have suffered endlessly with panic attacks. Fear of getting sick , night time and early morning, and fear of driving long distances are my main phobias. However,I experiece EACH and EVERY symptom everyone has spoken of in this forum.....shakes, tightness, lump in the throat, slight dizziness, mild depression, feeling of disconnection, like I'm invisible, feeling of being outside of myself, slightly disturbing thoughts, and what's the meaning to life......I mean the whole 9 yards! It used to only happen from time to time over the past 6 years, but now has returned and happens very very frequently.
I would like to find out some more about the CBT methods you are all discussing. I want to purchase one but would like to know what you all think is the best program out there. I am highly against medicines, so i'd like to keep everything very holistic. Please, anyone taking the time to read my LOOOOOONG message, please respond......I would GREATLY appreciate it!