My Struggle with Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Grab a beverage cuz this is a long-ish story.
I take Zoloft for anxiety and have for 15+ years. It takes the super sharp edges of life and softens them.
I’ve found a good combo of exercise, no caffeine, therapy, life coaching and Zoloft, that works for me.
I used to think taking Zoloft was “cheating” somehow. Like I wasn’t trying hard enough. Sometimes that thought still creeps in. The stigma around medications still exists.
A little over 2 years ago, I was having a physical symptom my doctor thought might be a side effect of Zoloft. So under his direction, I slowly came off it and stayed off it for a month so we could see if it was the cause.
It wasn’t. And when I saw him for a follow-up appointment, I burst into tears because the super sharp edges were back with a vengeance and I was struggling to function.
He set up a plan to go back on it and I was filled with relief.
That weekend though, I had my first panic attack. I could not get my heart rate to come down, my chest was going from cold to hot and I can only say I thought I was going to die.
It takes time for the medication to get in your system, and during that time I had countless panic attacks. With each one I thought, “this will be the one that kills me. God I hope Sully and the girls know how much I love them.”
There were many days I didn’t want to wake up. Not because I wanted to die, but because I knew what the day was likely to feel like.
I had to cancel work appointments because I just couldn’t do it.
I saw my therapist a lot. Twice a week for a month. And I still see her because therapy is awesome!
During this crazy ass dumpster fire of a season, I found life coaching. And I learned the MOST amazing thing.
Thoughts are just sentences in your head. They’re optional and changeable.
Two years later, I freaking love my life!
I know feelings of anxiety are normal, a part of life and I don’t have to be scared of or run from them!
Life is 50/50, amazing and crap. And I have those days and everything in between. But now I know how to work with my thoughts and feelings and not run from them.
If you experience anxiety to any degree, I see you, and I have an idea of what you may be going through.
And most importantly, you are not alone.
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