Hello, I'm your panic attack. I'll be taking over your mind for the next hour or so. And also your breathing, you ability to see, walk, reason and make sense of anything happening to you. Sit back and enjoy the ride because there ain't a damn thing you can do about it! Bwahahahaha!!!
And that's been my life for the past five days. I've had three panic attacks in five days and have no idea why other than one of my doctor's decided to play around with my depression medication (I swear, just for her own amusement) and now I'm flat out convinced I'm going mad.
If you are wondering what a panic attack feels like, let me explain to you what happens to me. It's happened three times and each time is pretty much identical to the last.
First my hands start to feel tingly and I start becoming very shaky - almost as if it's a sugar low. When it first happened I thought this was what was happening. Taking in sugar doesn't help and drinking orange juice from a coffee mug didn't help when it was chattering off my teeth from the shakes.
Next the tingling feeling in my hands travels up to my elbows and the tip of my nose goes numb. My vision starts to narrow and my peripheral vision is almost black but what I can see is off, wonky, not blurry but kind of like when you are drunk or stoned. (Not that I'd know that!) Eventually my whole nose and parts of my cheeks are completely numb. I can't feel my hands and arms at all now either.
My breathing increases and my heart rate increases. The fight or flight response kicks in and I try to get up and move but my legs won't work. I wobble around staggering as if I'm drunk. (Again, wouldn't personally know). I can't move. I have to move.
It's hot now, really hot. My clothes are causing me to itch as if I have a million little tiny fleas nipping at me causing me to scratch my skin raw. I can't breathe, I can't get enough air. Why is it so hot? I need air!!
I can't feel my face, my face is numb. What do I do? Oh my God what is happening. I can't see straight. I'm shaking all over. Am I having a seizure? I don't know. I should know this, I'm a nurse. I can't remember anything. What do I do? Breathe? I don't know how to breathe? There is no air.
My heart is racing, My face is wet - is that sweat? No, I'm crying. Why am I crying? I can't control anything. I don't like this. Make it stop, Make it stop. My husband is beside me shouting at me to breathe. I am breathing - aren't I?
God help me I'm going mad.
I'm so tired. I feel sick to my stomach. I want to lie down. What is all over me? I can't stop itching.
Breathe! He repeats. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Calm down.
I want to comply but I can't. I can't. Why is he yelling at me? Why am I crying? What the hell is happening to me and why can't I make it stop?
That's been three out of the last five days for me. I see the doctor Tuesday.