Dealing With the Anxiety of Seizures

cute-love-quotes-for-her-568x580Hey guys. I know I haven’t written in awhile. I’ve been pretty busy! I’ve had my boyfriend visiting me from out of town for the past week, so I’ve been trying to enjoy the visit as much as possible. This visit so far has been awesome. It’s also been pretty tiring, because we’ve spent time trotting around the city, seeing friends, and going on double dates. I’m stubborn as hell, so there’s no way that I want to spend his entire visit just hanging out at home. Just because my seizures aren’t entirely under control, I want to do my best to get out into the world (or to the coffee shop, or to a double date) and just have fun. My boyfriend is one of the best people to have around when I am having a seizure, because he is calm and collected, and knows the drill about what to do. So, in this case, I wasn’t worried about going out and about, because he is good at handling seizures. I mean, he has witnessed too many to count, so he’s pretty used to it. (Which kinda sucks, in the grand scheme of things).

Today’s post is about dealing with the anxiety that comes along with having seizures. I’ve never dealt with this until the last year or so, but now I am really feeling it.

The other night my boyfriend and I went out for a double date with my friend and her boyfriend, and we all wandered around downtown and grabbed a coffee together. The day itself was stressful, so I was trying to ease myself into a relaxed mode of chilling out with friends and having fun. I couldn’t stop worrying though. A few days before, I had a seizure and my seizing arm was stuck in my coat pocket so I crashed to the sidewalk. I need to add right here that this is one of my worst-case scenarios. I don’t walk with my hands in my pockets for the very fear of getting my hand stuck in my pocket.

544657_339910969457954_669556561_nAnyways-back to the double date: I just kept replaying that moment in my head, and couldn’t help worrying what it would be like if that moment happened again. Needless to say, I wasn’t really ‘in the moment’ when we were walking outside on the way to the cafe. At the cafe I felt a bit more relaxed. I had a sneaking suspicion that it had something to do with the tea that I was drinking. This whole non caffeinated tea is doing something for me! I felt safe because I was sitting in a chair, just drinking tea. If I were to have a seizure, I wouldn’t be going far. It’s crazy though. The worry of having seizures takes you away from so many wonderful things. Even though from the outside I am laughing and it seems as though I am having a great time-don’t get me wrong-I probably am, another part of me is still paralysed by the fear of a seizure.

After the coffee part of the double date we all walked along the water to look out at the city lights and to see if we could see any stars. There were also some weird structures, including this chime that if you touched the pipes it would make music. As soon as we walked up to it I knew it would agitate some part of my brain that might cause a seizure. (Sigh. Sounds weird, I know. I don’t really get it either). My friends and boyfriend ran up to it, and started playing with it, because it was actually pretty cool. If I wasn’t feeling anxious up the wazoo and agitated in a seizure kind of way, I probably would have joined in. Instead, I isolated myself by sitting on a bench farther away where they couldn’t see me. My reasoning was to let them have their fun, and I was so embarrassed by feeling triggered in a seizure kind of way by this music, that I decided to walk away from it. It was easier than dealing with it.

Soon my boyfriend and friends realized that I wasn’t with them, and ran over to find me. My boyfriend was especially concerned, and at this point my anxiety was spiralling out of control. I felt hot and nervous in addition to this overall feeling of panic running through my body. At this point I could explain what was happening, and completely breakdown crying, or just keep myself together. All I knew was that I needed to get home, and fast. I told my boyfriend in a panicked whisper that we needed to get home. We turned to my friends and I told them that I was tired, even though I had adrenaline pumping through my veins about a mile a minute. I didn’t want to go through the whole story about being anxious. I needed to get the f**k out of there before something bad happened. I just needed to be on my way home as fast as possible. My boyfriend and I rushed to the subway, and as I was getting my ticket for the subway, my breathing was rapid and my heart was pounding. Thankfully, my boyfriend and I made it home, and I calmed down on the journey. I didn’t end up having a seizure, but this was one of the few events that I’ve had where I’ve had some sort of anxiety type of event related to seizures.

This event was very bizarre, and its almost embarrassing to share, because I don’t fully understand what happened.

If you’ve had a similar experience, I’d really like to hear from you. Or, if you have any suggestions as to what to do if I find myself in that situation again. It’d help me feel less embarrassed and freaked out about the whole thing. Love to you all! xox

11 thoughts on “Dealing With the Anxiety of Seizures

  1. So it sounds like you had a full blown anxiety attack. You’re not alone, lots of people have them. I remember one particularly awful one in college in class, where all I wanted to do was get out of the classroom as fast as I could. You’re lucky to have had someone so attentive and concerned around. If you can, try practicing some of the meditation breathing, or yoga breathing, you know…just at random times, when you are sitting quietly, or when you aren’t ( that’s harder!). Remember to focus on just the breath, sending it to every part of your body. Saturate every cell with prana, Indian girl! Try it every day at different times…I think it could become a good tool to use when you have an anxiety attack. The more you practice it, the more likely you will use it when you need it most. Also works during boring lectures! Good luck…keep us posted. Love.

    1. I think you’re right Kyra…time to get back to the breathing. With the boyfriend visiting I have kind of forgotten about the meditation. I will definitely get back into the swing of it this week, maybe it will ease the anxiety, or better yet-prevent another attack! I will definitely keep you updated! Lots of love! xox

  2. I think you should speak with your doctor about emergency situations- I mean there are medicines like Cloba/Frisium which stop the onset of an attack immediately but you can’t have them all the time. So one is supposed to have it the moment one feels that he is going to get one. It is a sort of SOS medicine and I have seen its usefulness in past. Ofcourse, such a medicine differs from every kind of epilepsy.
    Also I think deep-breathing helps a lot….like pranayama.
    Lastly, You are really lucky to have such an understanding and caring boyfriend. πŸ™‚

    1. Yeah I definitely will tell my neurologist about this. Not thrilled about adding this to the mix of things to my file but hey, he’s gotta know, right? Hmm you can get pills for emergency anxiety attack situations? I already have Ativan for seizures…the only problem was I wasn’t sure that the situation that I described above was a seizure or an anxiety attack. I’d probably have to wait and see if I had more to get some sort or prescription. Do you have a prescription for such a situation?
      Also, yeah I am super lucky. He’s so accepting of the epilepsy and the seizures. It’s amazing. πŸ™‚

  3. Whew! Your description of your anxiety attack was so vivid that it brought back memories of some severe ones that I have had in the past. You dealt with it well and I am so happy that you gave yourself permission to go out and have fun when J. was there. xo

    1. Aww thanks. I felt like I dealt with it terribly but I guess I dealt with it in the best way possible given the situation. Also you know me, I was definitely going to give myself permission to go out and have fun! xox

  4. Anxiety attacks suck balls, but one of the best ways to deal with them is to talk it through. I’m sure your friends would have understood, many people without your condition have anxiety attacks all the time. I personally have anxiety attacks almost once a week, if not more, and live in constant fear of them sneaking up on me. The way that I get through them, though, is by telling my close friends about them and they help distract me. It always helps to let people you trust know about your situation otherwise they might freak out themselves or have false conclusions, and they can be a great source of relief as well. That being said I’m glad that you were able to calm yourself down and get home safely! You’re lucky you have such a good boyfriend that you can rely on. Breathe deep, meditate, exercise if you can, those will all help. And remember half the population suffers from anxiety for various reasons, so you are not alone πŸ™‚

    1. I just wanted to tell you that your message really made me feel a lot better. Since the incident a few days ago I have been talking about it to my boyfriend, friends, and parents, and I feel a lot better. I’m still trying to understand it, but just by talking about it I feel less alone and I feel like I am working out a plan for when/if this happens again. You’re totally right; my friends would have understood and I probably should have told them how I was feeling at the time. Your advice really means something though, because I feel encouraged to continue to talk about the anxiety about having seizures, so that will help to de-escalate the anxiety, so it wont get to the point that it did the other day.

      Thank you for your kind words. πŸ™‚ xox

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