I walked into the living room, my chest felt heavy. I sat down on the couch by myself but I was not alone. A feeling of dread enveloped me. My heart began to race and pound like it was going to come out of my chest. My mind began to jump from thought to thought, my mood darkening.
I was panicking.
I could see my daughter playing with her dinos on the floor. "What you doing, momma?" She brought Giganta over to say hi. He started to climb all over me, up my arm and onto my head. It was the connection I needed to break out of this. I reached past Giganta to hug my daughter. She was real, she was true, she was everything in the world.
After she struggled out of my hug and ran to pick up Deltadromeus and Allosaurus, I started calming down. I steadied my breathing and tried to clear my head. The more I breathed and focused on what was important, the slower my heartbeat became. My mood lightened, the dread began to losen its hold.
I had to get moving to get away from this feeling. I grabbed Bunny and the stroller and we headed out. As the fresh air entered my lungs I could sense that everything would be alright. We walked the river trail, picking wildflowers and watching bees. We saw the ducks swimming. Bunny was in heaven. "Look momma. Look at the ducks. I want to buy a boat." This was real and true. This is what was important.
This was my first panic attack in years. I used to have them all the time but I learned how to handle stress. I learned how to avoid them. But lately I've been overwhelmed. I've been stretched too thin. I know I need to let go of some of these things to focus on what is important.