During the years, I must admit…. Even though the panic/anxiety has been crippling and I would not wish it upon my worst enemy, there have been some stories to tell. I cringed at the time, but when we (I mean close friends and family) talk about it them, laughter comes of it.
Which can only be good?
When I was about 25, the attacks were in full flow, I could not be left alone , never!! As you know , I was desperate , dependant on everyone and anyone. Selfishly struggling through that part of my life.
Anyway, I think it was a Friday night, 20:30, or around that time. My parents had left to go to an event somewhere and my eldest sibling was due home from work at about 22:00.
Ok, I took a tablet at around 20:35, I’ll thought I’d put my mask on and read a book until he came home, this plan seemed too good to be true, I was home alone (sounds sad) in my bed , parents bedroom floor engrossed in a footballers autobiography. The book was the biography of Paul Gascoigne, who was and still is a hero of mine (for football reasons). I’m not going to go into detail, as I did not know his background as well or in as much detail as id thought. This man has ADHD, Tourette’s and suffers with severe mental health issues and panic attacks. As I got into the book he noted of how different events that occurred in his childhood had a knock on affect into his adulthood.
Waw!! As I was reading, that shitty feeling started creeping up on me!!! I’m feeling what this man did as a boy! If that makes any sense?? I was being taken into panic because of another mans life events! Why does it hit me? What am I doing still reading it?! I started off reading it because he was a fantastic footballer, then I realised what he was carrying in his mind!! To be in the limelight , be the idol of millions, but carry so much pain is unthinkable. Yes, he got paid a substantial amount of money during his career but there is no amount money on this planet that can cure mental illness. In the end I read it out of respect for the man! How difficult must that have been?
Back to the evening, this mans stories were hitting me hard, palpitations , it felt as though I couldn’t breathe!! I think the thought of other people in a bad way sets something in my brain and I think about the worst possible outcomes or think too deeply, which then turns out to be reality for me! I needed someone with me! I phoned my aunty, my mothers sister, who was great with me by the way, she lived close by and would often come round or try to take my mind off things by telling me stories of my childhood, asking me questions if really have to think about etc by phone call. We chatted but nothing was happening! I could not get away from the fear, I was fighting with all I had but when you have given up to dying… Fighting becomes quitting very quickly.
It had been a while and my brother walked in ‘what’s up with you?’
‘I think I’m f@cking dying!!’
‘Don’t be silly, it’s one of those attacks’
‘Yeah, but I can’t breathe!’
‘Just chill and cool down’
Lightbulb moment!!! I saw the kitchen sink wash tub was full of the mornings water … I ran over held it up and tipped it over my head!! Plates, cutlery, cups, smashed all over the floor and I’m soaked through with cold grubby dishwater!
I didn’t notice my brother standing about five yards away ‘are you for real?’ He asked, with a look of disbelief (eyebrows raised) and smirk to show that he found it somewhat funny. I didn’t at the time I still couldn’t breathe…. I was frantic , begging him ‘please make it go please make it go!!’ He was on the phone to my mother and I heard him say ‘ how do I calm him?! There’s nothing I can do!!’
He came up to me ‘right, here’s a tablet, while it kicks in what can I do? This will pass!’
‘I just want it to go, ask me questions, talk shock me!!!! Anything!!’
Now I will add that he’s not the most talkative , he didn’t really want to sit there and talk it out he’d had a long day.
He picked me up, and started taking me to the front door… What is he doing ?!?! No !!!! Outside and I did not get along so I said don’t take me anywhere. He said ‘I’m not trust me!’
He opened the front door all I could see was snow…. All of a sudden he grabbed my head and buried it in the snow!!!!
It was absolutely baltic!!!!! The adrenaline rush from the cold instantly changed my thoughts!!!
‘What the f@ck are you doing?!’
‘You asked me to shock you, so have that!’ Pushing me fully onto a path of snow now!
I went nuts!! Screaming and shouted ‘are you for real you idiot?! Then the line that will stay with me as a classic…
ARE YOU PANICKING NOW?
I just laid back down in the snow and absolutely wet myself laughing
What I didn’t realise as well I’d that around the corner, my other brother was walking home from the pub…. So there I am laughing my head off dipping my head in and out of the snow whilst soaking wet(please do not do this at home).
His reaction was super, laughed out loud and said that Fosters’ larger was better than he had thought and walked in to the house as if it was normal…. He run me a bath, and by this time my mask, although I didn’t need one had kicked in. I jumped in , he sat on the toilet and the conversation was hilarious! We talk about it now and again, even told some close friends at the football club and the laughter is still as good!!
A night that had the makings of becoming dreadful, turned out to be a night to remember and I’ll never forget it!
So…….. The point of this post…..?
Laughter, help, coping, shock tactic… I was shocked let me tell you !!
I don’t really know, I know that I can really really laugh and that it is ‘All in your head’.
Find the best solutions or even let others have a go.. They may come up trumps!
Good night/morning/day wherever you may be
Stay safe snd be positive