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People send me cards from time to time. Sometimes they're people I don't even know, other than from the internet.
I got one of these today, and the timing couldn't have been better; I had another panic attack last night, and was in a bad state. Luckily I was able to see an emergency doctor this morning, and now have diazepam. I feel much better, and a bit stupid and embarrassed. There is absolutely no logic to these episodes, but no matter how much I tell myself that, I can't convince my own mind.The panic attacks are not really surprising, I suppose - when I told the doctor I had increased cancer levels, had had my surgery cancelled, and was now waiting for more chemo, she said "you must have been devastated". Yeah, I guess that's pretty much the word. But there's nothing to be done about it; and when I do go on chemo, I know I'll get the best treatment the hospital has available. Still, I woke up at 4 this morning with my little heart pounding away, just like exam jitters, or driving lesson phobia, or vertigo, and it would not stop.It didn't altogether help that the emergency surgery is in a tiny Portakabin. The waiting room was so tiny, I had to open the door and stick my head outside, and the examination room was not much bigger, and I had to ask to have the door left open.It's not fun. Sorry to bang on about it. I was all heroic-like for the first few months, I think I'm in the 'something's gotta give' phase now.And spare a thought for poor Judy, who has to deal with all this at first hand. I honestly don't know what I would do without her.Now: onward! Excelsior, and that sort of thing.
We visited Sobell House, the hospice and day care centre affiliated with the Churchill, yesterday, btw - to talk to a doctor there, and to take a look around. I wasn't hugely overwhelmed, but I suppose it's one more group of people to turn to. Only not at night or at weekends, when you really need someone to turn to ... As far as the activities go, the only therapy I would really like is hypnotherapy, which they don't offer. They do do massages and yoga, but those are pretty fully booked. There's also 'music therapy' and 'art therapy', which don't inspire me. I once worked for a company that published a Musical Bingo game for the old and feeble; I wasn't expecting actually to be playing it just yet ...
Do not ever feel stupid or embarrassed. I think the doctor probably understated it when she said devastated. This bastard crab messes with our life and future and all that and I think I would be surprised if anyone got through it without a panic somewhere along the line.. Even I have been known to silently scream into my pillow at night (but shhh don't tell anyone ;)
I am gald you got some drugs to help it and sorry that the hospice didn't seem much cop. Put your name down for a massage or possibly even yoga cos I know you used to go and maybe you'll get a space.
As for cards, I have been thinking of doing a range of cards for people with cancer, cos lets face it, the cheery get well soon giraffes don't really cut the mustard when what you need is a 'I amscreaming life is shit and unfair and I am not you and don't really understand but I do care and want to hug you' card. Not seen any of them yet.
Maybe if my paranoia becomes real and I am out of a job or if GC tells me what I don't want to hear in June, I may do a range.... they could go alongside the cancer card range. I don't know if you remember them, or if you were around when i did them (I think you had just joined us then?) anyway, you need to employ lots of them for Bruce and get VIP treatment and backstage access and freebies etc. Well, having cancer is shit enough, might as well get the odd perks eh?
I got out of the washing up a bit. That was about it. I expect you to do better than me.
I hate the thought of you having panic attacks and I so so wish i could do something to help them and you, but I don't know what to do or what helps cos I have never had one.
All I can do is send you virtual hugs and brave teddy bears to fight off the nighttime demons and tell you that I care and wish i could have them for you or something. But it doesn't work like that does it?
I am rambling on again and lost my train of thought and what you said so will shut up.
Except to say Judy is a star! Hoorah for Judy!
All the hugs
Little My xxx
ps I am beginnng to feel a bit left out here as the only person who hasn't taken diazawhatsits... bloody Vikings, always the awkward ones... see the Bridge tonight.... she's a right one!
I send you my love since I haven't got anything useful to say.
I know what panic attacks are like and I hate that you're suffering. I haven't been in your shoes so can't understand (like Little My's cards) but send you hugs.
Thank you for the Thurber drawing. He's seen me through some tough times with his gentle humour.
There's not much that I can say either ....... other than I do understand about panic attacks and they are not surprising at all. Cancer is evil and plays mind games with you, the worse time being in those early pre-dawn hours ....... my remedy was to turn the TV on for a bit of ' the real world ' as it were ( amazing how comforting Sky World News can be in the wee hours )
You have had a rough time of it lately ( to say the least ) and all I can do is send hugs and strength to both you and Judy.
Love and hugs, Joycee xxx
Sorry to hear you've suffered a panic attack, I've not had one of those (or if I did I didn't know) so I'm sorry I'm not able to empathise with you better.
I've always told my friends on here that have felt panicky about something to remember Dads Army, "Don't panic Mr Manwaring!" as Corporal Jones said. Of course you will understand the irony of this as Corporal Jones was himself in panic. (Sorry not sure if DA was ever a show you watched.)
I certainly am not trying to belittle your panic attack, but as ever I am fairly hopeless at offering advice without a little humour. Perhaps your Judy would like to give me a punch....
I really feel for you Hils, bloody crab and all the shite it is causing you, I wish I could fish the little bastard out for you. I hope you do go for one of the therapies and that they help you a great deal.
LM, would you like some Diazepam, think I have an old packet hidden away for a rainy day, oh there have been a lot of those lately.
My best wishes to you Hils,
Hils, I know you like your music, so go to you tube and listen to a song sung by Nina Simone "here comes the sun" it always makes me smile, try it !!!!
Sending you Hugs
Thank you, everyone. Wouldn't it be nice if we all lived in a big commune so that we could share physical hugs? There are days (like these) when I wish I was ickle and could climb into my mum's bed and have her make everything better.
Disclaimer: this never really happened, my mother would have given me a smack and sent me back to my own bed fairly sharpish. I have to fantasise about other people's mothers, how sad is that?
Also, I have had some experience of communal living, and it is really only for the young. Also also, 'Cancer Street' would be the most unappealing name for a soap opera ever.
I'm about to go to bed, and hope that tonight is better than yesterday. I have my drugs to hand - oh, I didn't say, the doctor has also given me Lofebrapine, which is an anti-depressant I've had before, as well as the Diazepam - and, lord knows, I'm pretty tired after last night, so fingers crossed.
My lovely brother is coming to see me tomorrow. That's something to look forward to.
Love and hugs all round,
Night Hils, hope you have a better sleep tonight and please don't be scared, can you really imagine living with Tim and all those fish and maggots!!!!!!
I can only imagine what its like to be diagnosed with cancer. I do know what its like to care for a husband with cancer, but I certainly know all about panic attacks.
I used to have them 30 years ago, often been found on my hands and knees at the back door trying to get some air. I have been talked out of hyper-ventilating by a GP on the phone, and wouldnt go anywhere without a good old brown paper bag!
Apparently breathing into a paper bag with it over your nose so you can breathe in carbon monoxide is not advisable these days!!!!
Obviously the idea comes from Health and Safety, that would be right then!
I hope you have a really good nights sleep tonight, and a much better day tomorrow.
Lots of hugs and best wishes
Think I have got my carbons wrong, I am sure LM will correct me!!
I do accounts not chemistry!!!
Sleep well x
Anyway, hope tonight's OK and you get some good support with dealing with the panic attacks. In the meantime, pictures of baby animals can be good http://twitpic.com/9ev6i9
Yep thats the one!
So sorry to hear you've been suffering from more panic attacks, Hilary, I really empathise. As you probably know diazepam are only a short term fix. My GP has prescribed citalopram for mine, and whilst I was always loathe to resort to medication, I wouldn't be without them now.
Good luck, hun!
Like Respect, I never go anywhere without my trusty paper bag! My first panic attack happened in 1964 at work & I was taken to St. Thomas's, where a nurse in A & E (Casualty back then) whipped out a brown paper bag, blew it up & made me breathe into it. Miracle! All that carbon dioxide in the bag knocked out the excess oxygen in my lungs & bloodstream like magic.
It's very difficult to talk yourself out of a panic attack when it's actually happening but the medication will help to prevent repeats & you'll gradually relax & stop waiting for the next one.
Don't worry about getting dependent on diazepam, you're stronger than that - you quit smoking didn't you? Accept all the chemical help on offer to get you through, is my advice, not that you need it being a rational person.
Anyway, I hope you're having a good day with that lovely brother in spite of the foul weather, & I look forward to seeing you around later.
Hove & lugs,
Do you know it astounds me how many people on this site suffers or has suffered in the past with panic attacks!!!!!!
We should start a panic blog or thread thingy !!!!!
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