I’m new at this, since I’ve been dealing with anxiety for only a year. My trigger is “strong smelling foods in public places”. I know that’s nothing compared to what others have experienced but it seems like it’s been the longest year to me.
That being said, 3 hours ago I had a panic attack at a restaurant. The result was the scratches on my body. Each scratch signifies a moment I felt terrified. My arm was shaking and sweaty as I made those scratches. Keep in mind it’s not a conscious self-harm action, I don’t do it just to hurt myself. It’s just a tick I developed, much like a shaky leg or eye twitch. In 5 minutes the attack was over and I was relaxed enough to breathe. What sucks about anxiety to me is, I don’t know what exactly made my body react like that, other than the fact I was around food. Logically, my body should’ve known I was safe! I wasn’t eating. I was at a restaurant with two of my best friends (one of which even has anxiety) and yet I still felt terrified. I am not sharing my experience or story to have you feel bad for or pity me. I sent it to say a message of sorts.
I’m not sure if everyone else sees it this way, but to me, I think it’s ok if I have a rare attack. Obviously I’d prefer to be “back to normal” when I didn’t get attacks at all, but a year ago I couldn’t even be out of the house for more than 10 minutes and tonight I was in a busy Asian restaurant for over an hour! Yes, after it happened I was exhausted and so embarrassed it happened to me in public. But I feel as long as I keep pushing forward, seeking help and knowing I have support, it’s ok if I have a few bad days.
Sorry for rambling, but I’d love it if others can understand it too: Bad days will happen (that’s life after all) but they will end. You’ll be ok as long as you take care of yourself and remind yourself of how far you’ve come since the beginning.