I can still remember the strange feeling in my throat, my heart was racing, my hands and feet were so clammy and I felt like I was about to pass out. I was scared, I felt like I was dying and I even had visions of paramedics using defibrillators on me. My thoughts …… I’m never going to see my husband and children again.
December the 2nd 2016, I had my first ever panic attack and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. Give me childbirth any day, a panic attack is the worst feeling in the world. My husband had took my children to a party, I was home alone when it happened. I didn’t know at the time that it was a panic attack. I rang my mum for help but as I was talking to her, the feeling was getting worse, so I told my mum I was hanging up to call for an ambulance. My parents and the paramedics arrived and it was after all the necessary checks that the paramedic told me that I wasn’t dying I was having a panic attack. It took me a long time to calm down and when I did I was mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted. I went to the doctors on the Monday and they started me on Sertraline. I thought I wouldn’t have one again, I was wrong ! I had my next panic attack 3 days later. I went straight to the doctors and whilst waiting to be seen I managed to get it under control but then another one came on. The doctor saw the state I was in and signed me off work until after Christmas. When I got home I had another 3 one after another. I couldn’t understand why this was happening to me. Breathing slowly did not calm me down but talking or singing did. It was whilst I was having one and my husband was trying to calm me ,he got me to name my ten favourite books – for a bookworm like me this was tricky I love loads of books but it worked and I focused on listing them to him and the panic attack went.
I realised to take my mind off the worry I needed to read and escape reality. So I focused on reading as much as I could and reviewing the books for my blog. I really started to lose myself in books like never before because I knew if I lost myself in the story I wouldn’t be thinking about the ‘what if’s’ that come with my anxiety. My counsellor said to me that it sounded like I was reading and imagining myself as the characters without any worries and when I thought about this I realised he was right, I wanted more than anything to relate to these carefree characters with no worries, who didn’t have anxiety and always felt like something bad was going to happen. I write my reviews on my blog with more passion than before and I am now focusing on building my blog up so that maybe one day I can make a career out of my reading and reviewing. My TBR pile keeps on growing thanks to Netgalley and all the lovely publishers and authors who supply me with proofs in exchange for an honest review. My mum doesn’t really understand why I read as much as I do and when I told her recently that I would love to not have to work and read all the time she simply replied “that’s why your depressed”…….. I’m not depressed I have anxiety and reading is better than any medication the doctor can prescribe me. My husband on the other hand is very supportive of me and my reading, he doesn’t mind all the books I have still to be read, he doesn’t mind when I disappear in the bath for over an hour to read or when I go to bed early to read because he can see that it is helping me and it makes me happy.
Thanks to all my Twitter friends and followers, we’re all on the same page when it comes to our love of reading. Thanks to everyone who takes the time to read my blog posts, this rally helps my confidence to grow.