Up until the 6th of June 2005, I was living the normal, average life of a 14-year-old teenager. But that day everything changed. It was quite a warm day and I was with my mother sitting in the waiting room of the dentist’s clinic. When suddenly with no warning at all, my heart started beating extremely fast, my mind began to race and I felt I was losing control of everything. My mum managed to calm me down eventually but little did I know then that this was the start of things to come.
I started living under the threat of getting the physical symptoms, a racing heart, trembling sensations in my hands and feet, and the ultimate feeling of losing myself completely. My life became terribly affected, I stopped being the carefree teenager I had always been and spent my days living in fear, every day was an ordeal that I dreaded waking up to. I didn’t understand what was happening to me, why I felt this way and neither did my family, they thought I had some serious disease. So I was taken to see the doctor. Then another and another! Each examination result came back the same, there was nothing physically wrong with me. This came as a horrible revelation to my family, as I was told that I was making things up, it was all in my head.
After this, years went by. I kept my thoughts, feelings and symptoms to myself as I felt so ashamed. I was determined never to share what I was experiencing again with anyone. I learnt to live with the fear and reoccuring panic attacks. I learnt how to hide away from places and situations that were triggers.
It was only when I relocated to a different city for my university course and ended up seeing a new doctor that there was hope at last. I finally got a referral to see a psychiatrist. He reassured me that anxiety disorders are more common than I could imagine and people who live with anxiety and panic can and do recover. Things went fine subsequently, as it was explained to me I was living with a ‘panic disorder’. Not only I but also my family realised that I wasn’t insane and at least now I could get help. I was prescribed medication which helped take the edge off things and help me cope better on a day to day basis.
Over the years, I continued to experience anxiety symptoms on and off. I have had periods when these have displayed as social anxiety, health anxiety or panic attacks. The biggest fear that evolved is the fear of death or thanatophobia. Reading up about this phobia makes your fears seem irrational and even exaggerated but that doesn’t make them any less fearful at the time. It is easier said than done to kick out your so-called irrational thoughts and fears at times.
I still worry a lot about anxiety affecting my work. As from experience, I know that with anxious thoughts comes the dreadful symptoms and the fear of embarrassment of breaking down in front of others at the workplace is something I am not sure I could live with. This is why I am struggling to find a job I’m sure. With each rejection I face, my frustration and the fear of anxiety affecting my performance at work/interviews get worse. I get a feeling that I might remain unemployed or will never get a job ever again.
So where am I now 15 years on? I am still battling but trying to put things into place to overcome the anxiety. There are days that are more difficult than others but the thing that keeps me going on the bad days is the fact I know there are better times ahead. One day I will be free of this burden because I no longer have to hide what I am going through. I am motivated to fight for the cause of mental health issues and find my solace in helping others to overcome these.
How can No Panic help you?
No Panic specialises in self-help recovery and our services include:
Providing people with the skills they need to manage their condition and work towards recovery.
Our aim is to give you all of the necessary advice, tools and support that you will need to recover and carry out this journey.
We do have to charge a small membership fee of £25 a year to cover costs.
What do you get for your £25 membership?
- Access to our No Panic Support Programs including 1-1 mentoring and recovery groups
- Access to our Befriending Group Service & Coffee Afternoons
- Access to our Member’s Only Facebook Group
- Access to Access Anxiety Aid on our Member’s Facebook Group
- A Year’s Subscription to No Panic’s Newsletter worth £12
- Optional access to and inclusion in our Contact Book
- A discount on buying stocked items from No Panic by post or phone
- A free copy of the Extended Beginner’s Guide to Anxiety – Exclusively available to members.
- A free No Panic Wristband
- A coupon on your birthday good for 10% on any No Panic stock
- 20% off Lavender Products from Cotswold Lavender
If you would like to find out more, then please get in touch: email@example.com
Or get more information about our one-to-one mentor recovery services here: https://nopanic.org.uk/one-one-telephone-mentor-scheme-members/