Now 4 days ago when I did top ten facts about me I said I didn't think I had cried since April, but since then I have.
I have a panic disorder. What that means I experience panic attacks- sudden physical and mental feelings of fear for no reason (May include hyperventilating, shaking, dizziness and other things)- frequently. And yesterday, around 11 pm Brisbane time, I had a severe panic attack that lasted about 20 minutes.
It's like if you were falling backwards and landed on a floor of glass- it's that moment just as the glass underneath you shatters.
It started small, I felt a bit unsettled as I walked around my house, my heart wasn't racing but when my brother called out to me from the living room, he sounded distant, as if I was dreaming. He'd asked me if I was ok. I didn't answer as I scuttled into my room. I sunk into my bed and just sat there staring at my bookshelf, I started to tremble. No matter how many times I've experienced it, it still felt new and strange, I felt unprepared. I stood up and the whole room went black around me, not like the darkness slowly appeared when you're tired, my sight was just gone in an instant. I collapsed. My sight came back and my heart beat started to quicken and quicken and quicken until I felt I could hear it. My breath started to lose rhythm until I was gasping for air. I tried 478, but I had such a little amount of oxygen to hold myself with that I couldn't. The room didn't spin, it was more of a twirl, like the trail a door knob takes when you twist it. I felt like I was dying. I texted my friend, I wanted her to tell me about something, anything. But I changed my mind on asking that request, which bothered her. I mean, who would want someone to be like "Hey can you do something for me?" "Actually sorry never mind."?
She persisted on me telling her what was going on so I said I just wanted her to talk because my heart was racing. She knew and she called. I didn't pick up.
"Georgia. I know you're having a panic attack. You'll be ok-pick up." She sent. I didn't. My gasping lessoned but my heart rate didn't slow nor did the trembling stop. And I wept. I cried because I was terrified. And I knew I was insane. I knew my best friend would always help me, yet I was afraid of inconveniencing her or worrying her. She has anxiety, I felt she didn't need to worry about me too. But I'd done it by saying my heart was racing because she knew what that meant. I cried for worrying her and for losing control, I rarely lose control with a panic attack. I was unstable.
Eventually, the panic attack passed and I gathered myself together. I made excuses for why I had been unavailable for the past twenty minutes because I didn't want to seem like I was seeking attention and I cleared things up with my friend.
I tell you this not only because it's the truth, but also to be able to say this: Crying is healthy, it's normal and there is nothing wrong with doing it. The same goes for mental disorders. They aren't controllable and even the strongest people can be taken over by them. But it's normal. You are not an insane human being who nobody will love if you do have a mental disorder. It took me about a year to open up about my panic disorder, yes it wasn't smooth sailing. Some asked me if I faked it for attention and others asked me how I could be certain without full clinical clarification (Of which I have been to the doctors before with confusing pains and illnesses where they've said it can occur from overwhelming experiences of stress). But overall, I did mostly receive loving support. I learnt to come to terms with panic attacks and how to keep them in control. So if you need anything, that one person to give you support, that one person to chat to, I'm always open if need be. I'm no expert, but you should talk to someone if you need help, and I'll be that someone if you need me to be. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
So that is the last time I cried and the life lesson to go with it.
I hope you have a wonderful day and a happy holiday