A taste of FAITH, a touch of LAUGHTER.
Panic Attacks/Fear of Death
A friend on Facebook asked a question about panic attacks. It got me thinking.
I have a memory from younger years, when I was still in school. I think I was in my teens, but I’m not exactly sure what age I was.
I remember we were living in a cottage on a farm, in the country, because my Mom was working in the farm dairy. She was milking cows and filling those old glass milk bottles as well as those big bulk containers.
The cottage was a long, single story building where I think one end was living room/kitchen and the other end was one bedroom leading into another. I must have been at least 13 or 14 because my sister was there, but may have been much older. I just do not recall.
What I do recall is going to bed and being afraid of falling asleep because I might die and never wake up. This happened often in that house, that much I remember. I would fight my sleep until I was forced to succumb in total fatigue. I was glad to wake up still alive next morning.
Also in that house, I had what I think might have been a real panic attack. I remember my Mom all ready to go out somewhere and I was crying and could not, would not let her go. I was a teen, not a toddler, and the behaviour was inappropriate.
I was begging her to stay because, I think, I was afraid to die, or afraid to be left alone if she died. I’m not sure. But Mom was very firm with me and she finally pried herself free and left the house. I’m glad she stood her ground. I did not die. She lived too.
It was also while we were in that house that one summer day I was outdoors and I suddenly “saw” everything around me much clearer, heard everything sharply and knew that I was alive, that all this meant something. Was someone praying for me?
This realization of my life and the creation around me. It has to have been a God given moment…..but I don’t know where the panic attacks came from or how they fit in with this revelation of life and something higher and wider than myself, because that feeling was not fear.
The other panic attack I remember was not until I was in my 50’s. I was in bed and I woke up, shot up in bed, very much afraid, crying and trembling uncontrollably. My husband was still sleeping but he woke up with my cries and movement. It was awful. I thought I was dying. I had trouble breathing.
The Red Cross Hospital nurse was called and she recognized the event as a panic attack. I was instructed to blow in and out of a paper bag until calm. It really was an isolated incident. I don’t know what might have caused it.
I do remember occasionally still struggling with fear of dying in my sleep though, after that, even though I had faith in God in my life by that time. It took having cancer and facing the possibility of death as a sharp reality to deliver me of that irrational fear.
Those are the only panic attacks I remember having. Here is a link to some further information. I hope someone reading this finds it useful.