I had a tough year where my grandmother died and other things where going on in my professional life. I began to see that the epilepsy demands of sleeping 8 hours a night would cause me to change my dreams of being in film production, as well as dealing with many other changes in my life. After all the stress, one day I experienced a convulsive attack after meeting someone in an airport, this day changed everything for me. The fear of being alone whilst I had a seizure started creeping up on me. Even though I had this condition for years, I had never had any problems emotionally.
I began noticing that I would get a crippling feeling, nausea, spaciness (since TLM I realized this was de-personalization) and a fear that something terrible was about to occur to me (when I was in the airport alone. I would also get blurred vision and lightheadedness (de-realization), all these symptoms began getting worse. The amazing part of anxiety is that it mimics your worst fear health wise, for me this monster would mimic identically my symptoms before a seizure.
Slowly very slowly but surely, I realized that I was not having an epileptic aura that I was experiencing, but it was something called anxiety and panic attacks. The more I read about my symptoms, the more I was sure that this is what was happening to me, it seemed improbable because ‘I’m not crazy’.
I thought, “great…no problem… it’s all in my head…this is doable” (I wish). It began increasing every day to the point the epilepsy was not the problem in my life. I WAS AFRAID OF BEING AFRAID. Nothing was working and I didn’t understand why, I felt terrible.
I had a nanny for my child, but she became MY nanny. I could not drive alone anymore and she would accompany me everywhere. Airports, any kind of traveling where I was alone were a thing of the past. No more adventures in my life because I had to go with someone and it was torture. The airplane was fine; it was the airport, when anyone asked me questions at the airport I would stop breathing and could not follow a train of thought and that would become overwhelming and paralyze me.
I remember one time when I was left alone with my son at home and I remember clearly seeing from my window the children’s slides, swings, and wanting to take him but feeling paralyzed. I had no life anymore.
I went to therapy for three years at least and it got a little better, but I still had safety net of being with someone at all times. The neurologist changed my medicine because I blacked out one day, thinking it was my epilepsy, he said this was a better medicine for me to be taking.
I know now that that particular black out was a panic attack since I had no other symptoms of seizure. The change in medicine was my private hell. My hands would shake and I had cold sweats, I read online that even though this was the best medicine, it caused anxiety. “WHAT?” That was it. I would have to take the famous anxiety drugs everyone was talking about and I had refused to accept.
I couldn’t live like this anymore. I made an appointment with a psychiatrist and, thankfully, she couldn’t fit me in until a month later. During that month, I felt defeated and humiliated. How could something in my head that I should be able to control paralyze me and ruin my life? Everyone around me looked at me like I was making a big issue about nothing and that I should just “calm down”. Why couldn’t I just calm down?
The day before the appointment, I had a feeling I should look up alternative methods to anxiety and that is how I found The Linden Method. The experiences I read resonated with me so much that I decided to try it before going into the meds, (which were likely to have been then prescribed for life).
What amazed me about The Linden Method was that it helped me understand the science behind the anxiety. More than what caused it, why my body reacted the way it did. Why my body was going back to flight or fright and how that physiologically affected my body. I was NOT crazy and I was actually feeling sensations caused by adrenaline. The tips where priceless, I did the entire home method program and I saw a difference and the understanding and the ability to see a decrease in symptoms gave me hope. So how has my life changed since I implemented The Linden Method program
Hi, my name is Beth, I am director of Linden Tree Education.
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