I had one of my first real panic attacks in the middle of the night last night. I often have nightmares that deal with chronic pain and surgery and often dreams of being in prison. Last night I was having a nightmare where I was stuck in prison that was dirty and lonely and the scariest place I had ever seen. I couldn’t escape. My daughter woke me up crying and took me out of my prison. I was awake, my heart was pounding (I suffer from anxiety but this was a true panic attack) I felt paralyzed. I only ever felt that way when I went through minor withdrawl from the medicine I was being weaned off of at the Mayo Clinic. I couldn’t fall back asleep. I tried to read. I tried to play “words with friends” on my phone. Just anything to make it stop. I sat on the front porch for a few minutes but that did not help either. Once my heart slowed down and I practiced deep breathing I felt a little better. I let my daughter sleep next to me because I just wanted to hold her. I was worrying about so much that I stayed awake until four am. Kayci woke at six am (that is sleeping in for her so I cannot complain!)
The thoughts I was having were ridiculous. I was thinking of all the things I “should be” doing and how what I do for a living “stay at home mom” isn’t enough and how much chronic pain has ruined some things and I should be doing better. Logically, all of this is ridiculous. By eight am I was doing much better. I was so relieved the panic attack was gone I did not even care that I was tired.
Louise Hay (one of my favorite writers and speakers) always says: “You are exactly where you are supposed to be.” There are many things I still want to work on and grow from and I have a lot more to do with my life. I have goals for myself that may take years to tackle. But I’m working on them and I truly am exactly where I am supposed to be.
When you start thinking about the future and all the things you “should be” doing keep in mind that you are exactly where you are supposed to be. Work on what you feel you need to work on but go slowly. Be okay with today. Write five things down that you are grateful for just today. We are all exactly where we are supposed to be.