Fear of Flying and Panic Attacks
This is a subject that is so close to my heart and almost destroyed me and I could not understand what was going on with me.
Panic Attacks, I never had a problem flying before marriage and then when I got married I had to worry about my husband’s survival.
It most certainly was not logical and I didn’t know I even had a problem with this until we went on our first trip together where we had to fly. Oh boy, what an experience that was!
Happily Making Plans To Fly Away
After being married a few years we decided to plan a trip to Disney World for seven glorious nights and we were so excited to be flying away for a much deserved vacation. We made the arrangements and were going to the end of September and would be staying over our wedding anniversary. A dream come true because everyone looks forward to going on vacation and getting away from it all. Eating out the whole time we were gone and not having to worry about doing dishes. You would think that, right?
Flying Away Meant Panic Away and Away
Two months before we were going to go on vacation the apprehension started to take shape. Each day I would wake up in such a panic over flying and the whole trip itself! I did not want to go and I couldn’t tell my husband about it and so I suffered quietly and would cry my eyes out every day he left for work and would be full of anxiety and worry the entire time he was gone. I could not eat, I felt sick and I did not know what to do or what was happening to me. I had never had a problem leaving home or flying before. My Panic attacks got so bad that I’d wake up with one and sometimes it would last 10 hours a day and I was a mess.
I had friends who tried to help me figure out what the big deal was and some of them were sympathetic while others thought I was crazy. The only one who understood was my mother who was afraid to fly so she never went anywhere far on trips. She was a big help, she kept telling me to cancel the trip and tell my husband now instead of waiting until the last minute which would be a disaster.
Something had to be done because it was taking over my life and so I decided to go to the doctor to see if anything could be done. He told me that I had Panic Disorder which created panic attacks due to fear of flying and obsessive disorder because of over thinking this. He prescribed a sedative to try to calm me down because I felt as though I was having a stroke or a heart attack or possibly both but he assured me I would not die over this. He suggested I go into therapy to see if I could talk this out and come up with some constructive ideas so I could deal with this. I began my journey of…
How To Overcome Fear of Flying and Panic Attacks
Between taking medication to relax me and talking to a therapist about my panic attacks; I was not getting much relief and I will tell you why that is. You really need to find the right therapist because not all therapist are the perfect fit for you and you want to find someone who participates with you in a dialog. I did not have that kind of therapist that did this.
I had the kind who sat in a chair and was completely silent for 45 mins while i told her I was scared to death to fly and take this trip and cried and cried and she gave no advice and just kept asking me “how does this make you feel” Is she kidding me? I was paying this person to help me to overcome this fear of flying and for this panic disorder and she just sits there. Heck, my Yorkie could have done a better job since he just sits there as well. I knew I was not going to get the help I needed so I decided to do research and to learn how to overcome this by myself.
I went to book stores, libraries, online articles, anything that had to do with panic attacks, anxiety and how to handle panic is what I was researching. One thing I learned was that I was not a freak and millions of people suffered from this and I was not alone. I joined support groups and listened to what others were going through and the techniques that helped them. I felt as though I was getting some place. At least I was getting some concrete ideas on how to deal with this. This was not my fault and I spent a lot of time telling myself that it was not my fault because i was riddled with guilt over how I was feeling.
I learned breathing steps when I felt a panic attack coming, I also kept myself busy at the onset of an attack. I allowed myself to feel what i was feeling and telling myself that it was ok to feel it and then allowed it to flow over me and not fight it. Fighting an attack makes it much worse so I gave in to it and breathed my way through it. Another suggestion was telling myself that I was taking my life one hour at a time and then one day at a time. These suggestions did help but I can’t say that I was cured or even ready for my trip. I knew I had to explore more on how to overcome anxiety.
I was very honest with my husband how I was feeling about flying and he asked me if I would mind driving the trip even though it was 12 hours and so that is what we did. He loves to drive and did not mind and I felt safer doing that. We had a great time on the trip but I knew when I got back home I was going to have a lot of work to do on finding ways to deal with this panic situation and to get over my fear of flying.
In future articles I will tell you how I did just that! In the meantime, if you are having anxiety, panic attacks, need help in trying to figure out what you can do, I can help you with this. Request a reading from me or visit my home page to book an appointment with me. I know what your going through because I have gone through it and at times still do.
I am available for live chat, Skype or phone sessions on this site, at the rate of $2 per minute for 30 minute sessions or $1.50 per minute for 60 minute sessions.
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