The Useful Predicament

I’m writing this now, because I know if I keep putting it off–I won’t! It’s already uncomfortable enough to be putting this into words. But…one of my missions for this blog is to share my experiences, and hey. If I can share and someone gleans something useful, my heart is full! And it wasn’t for nothing. However–a big fat however–vulnerability isn’t one of my strongest suits. So here goes nothing!!

Last Saturday, I woke up ready for the day. Kind of. I’m not a morning person by any stretch, so take “ready” lightly! The girls and I had some errands to run while Frank hustled in his side business: car detailing. I was catering a wedding later that day.

Got in the car, headed to Target. All was well. {Coffee was in hand!}

It started with feeling light-headed. It was like when there’s turbulence while you’re flying in a plane. You go UP and then your gut is in your throat as you come back down

But the coming back down is where I stayed…for at least 8 hours or more. Actually, I kept going. Down, down, down. It was such an unexpected feeling of ALL the things! Terrible, terrible feelings of hopelessness, guilt, sadness. So MANY feelings of desperation. It felt like I was literally crawling out of my skin! Hyperventilating, dizziness, heart racing.

Folks, I don’t deal with anxiety. Not on a physical scale like this. I may have the heart-and-mind stuff like most folks do at some points in their lives for various reasons here and there. But this? A completely different animal all on it’s own! There are no reasons in my life where this kind of attack could take a foothold. There’s just not! I have been so blessed in my life with my family and friends and life. Amazing all in it’s own right! There’s nothing that I can see moving forwards where this can take a foothold in my life: It was simply and LITERALLY out of this world. I NEVER want to go through that again. EVER.

I kept moving, though. I trudged. Every step I took was like pulling through quicksand! One.foot.in.front.of.the.other. My errands took us to a few places, and I did come into contact with a few folks. Some trying to make small talk, and I just wasn’t having it. I normally love small talk and little conversations! I love people. But this day, I felt like my light was gone. Like, GONE. I felt dull and light-less (and lifeless). Smiling actually was pretty hard to do!

Got to my catering job, and starting doing what I do. Talking to other folks helped immensely. I slowly snapped out of it mostly by that night, but the dull throb was still there although the sharpness of this attack had left. It was like getting a deep tissue massage that hurts like the SAM DICKENS while it’s happening, and afterwards you are sore! That’s exactly what it was like.

“Welp. That was completely out of left field,” I thought to myself that night when I got home and got myself ready for bed. Never saw that coming! “And I never want to experience it EVER.AGAIN.”

Let me admit this real quick: I was once (as in just last week before Saturday!) in the camp of various thoughts on panic attacks/anxiety. Stuff like {but not limited to} this:

“Eh. Just focus on other stuff and you’ll be able to snap out of it.”

“I really think that is all in your head.”

“Come on. Can’t you see how your personality is contributing? Loosen up!”

“This isn’t actually real, you know.”

“There’s got to be something you’re doing to cause this.”

“It’s just hormonal.”

Etc.

And while yes, there may be folks who struggle with anxiety who are doing things {knowingly or unknowingly} that invite a demonic foothold to take place in their lives causing pure hell in their lives–sometimes though, there’s no rhyme or reason or explanation. Perhaps it is something subconscious that’s surfacing or a lack of sleep or…the list could go on. Who knows? I sure don’t claim to.

I just know this: I am 101% more understanding, sympathetic and even empathetic than I was last week. I had a physical shift in my view of this issue. I don’t condone identifying with it or condone the continuation of the foothold allowances. I don’t at all condone that. However, for these seriously debilitating encounters of anxiety and panic–I get it now. I honestly never thought I’d say that, and before now I would have seen this as weakness in another.

Sometimes God allows things to happen because we need to be reminded of how to love others for where they’re at. As constant as their problems/issues may seem: They are real to them. When you get a taste of it for yourself, your entire mindset shifts! I know mine did. I wanted to share this insanely bizarre time with you. I don’t know which camp you’re in. I don’t think I ever thought about it, because I thought I was right about people just needing to get over themselves and their ‘issues’. Boy. Ok.

What’s the solution to all of this? Dunno. Well, I do. But there’s so many types of people and reasons they are struggling. There’s so many folks out there who deal with anxiety and depression and panic attacks and despair and suicide and hopelessness and lifelessness…

JESUS. Coming down from another heaven like a forward moving wind. Go forth. Go lightly.

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