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It’s Secret Time…

June 7, 2011


Erin Schrader

Here ye Here ye.
As you all know by now {if you actually read this sucker} is that I like to keep things light/funny/awkward/and totally awesome around these parts…
but today, I am switching gears for a second.
Today I am going to try my best to be serious-to talk about something close to my heart-and to hopefully let others out there know-you are not alone.
Ever since the beginning of this little blog, I knew there would come a time when I would feel the need to talk about this. And welp, today is the day.

So here we go…{insert nervousness about the fact I am about to bare all}
{also insert the fact that this will most likely be looooong, sorry Charlies}.
Last year I started experiencing a little thing called anxiety.
But there was nothing little about it.

It came in overwhelming doses, and played out in panic attacks on several occasions.
For me, the panic attacks consisted of my heart beating a thousand times a minute {or so it felt}, feeling out of breath, shaking, and the feeling that I was either going to pass out or die.
To say it was unpleasant is an understatement.
It was AWFUL, frightening, and all-consuming.

Once I had my first panic attack, the only thing I could focus on was not having another one.
And if you know anything about how our brains operate, the more we consume ourselves with thoughts like the above, the more likely it is to happen.
So I would have another panic attack, and then another..
This lasted for months..
It would force me to leave work on occasions,
wake up with a stomach ache from fear and nervousness about what was to come that day,
and it left me in tears night after night.

I was worried that I would never feel “normal” again,
I was scared that my husband suddenly thought I was unstable and would no longer want to be with me,
I was nervous that I would have to get on medication {which is a HUGE deal for somebody like me who hesitates to even take an ibuprofen},
I was angry to feel like I no longer had control over my own emotions, and
I was frustrated knowing that I was allowing my anxiety to enable me to do things I knew I was capable of.
I searched for answers-scoured the Internet in hopes of finding solutions {which included snapping a rubber band on my wrist any time I thought a panic attack was coming on, switching from coffee to chamomile tea in the mornings, and prayer.
{Lots and lots of prayer}.

I held on to every word that somebody else would speak about suffering from this same condition, and took so much comfort in knowing I was not alone.
Thankfully, this season of my life passed and while I do not suffer daily like I did for awhile,
I do experience these same feelings on occasion.
For me-I had to fix my “idle” mind-
fill it with happy thoughts, things that made me excited, and creative outlets
{insert the birth of this blog}.
Betcha never thought this whole thing came into play just to beat anxiety did ya?

While I never wish to go back to that moment and hope for others that you will never experience it,
 I am thankful for several reasons that I did.
I am thankful for the moments that it forced me on my knees to pray,
I am thankful that my heart has softened and hurts for those who suffer from this condition, and I am excited that I can help be a resource to somebody else.
If you are currently experiencing this, you are not alone.
Even that “Easy-going, never stressed, laid back girl who blogs about all things funny and happy” knows exactly how you feel.

It can and will be overcome.

Please talk to me. 
I would love to hear from you and be your partner in crime in kicking this little thing called anxiety’s booty.

Last but not least-here is a song that I fell in love with during that low season.
I had the honor of seeing JJ Heller in concert months ago and before she sang this song she told the audience why she wrote it. Turns out, she was suffering from the same exact thing-panic attack after panic attack. Her words spoke so true and brought so much comfort.
Even to this day as I listen to it, tears roll down my face as I think about how thankful I am to have overcome it-but also as I hurt for those who are still hurting.
 JJ Heller “Your Hands”
I love you guys and I hope you still love me…
Anxiety and all 😉

Thank you for reading…just don’t expect to see a lot more of this in these parts 😉

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