I Cured My Panic Attacks
Without therapy or medication, and now I want to share the secret with you
I’d attempted to write this article before, thinking that I had overcome my overwhelming anxiety. And yet in the midst of writing it my hands began to shake and my mind once more began to race with those relentless, bullying thoughts, “What if it’s not true? What if you’re a liar and what if writing about this topic causes you more anxiety and what if you have a panic attack right now?”
The thoughts would not stop coming. The more sentences I wrote the stronger the feeling of anxiety became until I hurriedly closed my laptop screen and realized it wasn’t yet time to talk about it. That day I recognized that there were flaws in my recovery, and I set out to fix them.
I know how debilitating it is to live with anxiety, especially in the brutal aftermath of a panic attack. That is why I told myself I would write this article when the time came. I would write it when I knew for certain that I had made myself capable and strong and that I had found the right tools for recovery. None of these tools were expensive (most of them were free) nor did it require any medication on my part or long hours in therapy.
Therapy may work well for many people but for myself and others like me it can be difficult to be vulnerable with a stranger, especially when the stranger’s time comes with a hefty price tag that not everyone can afford. Some psychiatrists in my area even boasted on their website that “unless the patient has a history of addiction, the first line of treatment will be Xanax,” which was a statement that didn’t sit right with me at all. I didn’t want to risk becoming dependent on a drug.
Going to therapy, in my mind, was like admitting that things had gotten so bad and so out of control that I could no longer help myself — I could no longer be independent. So I made a different path for recovery.
A brief history on my relationship with anxiety: my childhood was not an easy one. It was teeming with verbal and physical abuse which left me nervous and suicidal and brimming always with this fear that I might do or say the wrong things to my parents. It did not help that my mother was diagnosed with depression and therefor made it more likely…