My Anxiety Diagnosis

I was first diagnosed with panic disorder in late 2012. Prior to this I had a lot of feelings I’d bottled up for a long time. Between 2008 and 2012, my parents had separated and my half-brother had been born and I had suppressed expressing my feelings on the issue to people. For years I remember getting this moments where I would feel ‘funny’, possibly even before these events, and I know now these to be anxiety (panic) attacks. These started to get worse in 2012 as I remember sitting down in my English class and most days having these ‘funny’ moments that would eventually pass. I think I began to become scared of them occurring and so I would talk myself into having an anxiety attack.

Then, at half term my mum and I had gone to stay with my grandma and we were going out for the day. My Grandma went down the step outside her house, fell and landed on her hip. She went to hospital in an ambulance and Mum and I stayed there until my Grandma was admitted to a ward that evening with a broken hip. We don’t live far from my Grandma, but we don’t live really close (about a 40 minute drive) so me and my Mum decided we would stay at my Grandma’s until the hospital thought her fit to go home. This meant a 40 minute commute to school everyday when I returned back from the holidays. I was starting to get more and more stressed with the commuting and worried about my Grandma until one day in November 2012. I went into English, sat down and started to feel ‘funny’, but the feeling wouldn’t pass. I thought I was about to faint and so I got the teachers attention by saying, “Miss, I think I’m going to faint and I don’t know what to do”. I have no clue why I said that because I definitely do know what you’re meant to do if you think you’re going to faint! She helped me out of the classroom, down the corridor and down the stairs to the school nurses office. Believing I had a bug, the school nurse called my Mum to collect me and take me home, so back to my Grandma’s we went. The next day I was looking forward to, as I was Children in Need so the whole school was in fancy dress. I went as a mad scientist and me and my friend were to tie our feet together all day to raise sponsorship money because we were in most of the same classes. Although I was looking forward to the day, once I got there I felt peculiar and on edge all the time, so I went to the school nurse and once again I was sent home.

On the way to my Grandma’s, my Mum and I discussed how I felt and these ‘funny’ moments I was having and when I had them. This was the first time I’d really talked about these moments I would have. That was when my Mum realised that I was having anxiety attacks. As it was a Friday I could not get an appointment at my doctors for the next day, so I booked an appointment for Monday. Monday came and that was when I was officially diagnosed with panic disorder…

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