If you have ever had the terror, you will understand where I am coming from. The feeling of being taken over by an unwelcomed force, a prisoner in your own body.
I remember it like yesterday and can be transported back to that September night in an instance. As the clock struck midnight, I was ripped from my dream state by an almighty surge of energy that took over my body. Waves of terror, fear and panic coursing through my veins. I thought I was dying, sounds melodramatic, but in the rawness of the moment, that is exactly how I felt. My heart was out of control, as if it was trying to escape from my body, my blood felt as though it couldn’t be contained within my skin, my legs were shaking uncontrollably and my back had waves of what felt like electricy surging up and down in loops. “What is happening to me?!” I screamed to my husband, “I think I’m dying”. Never before had I ever felt so utterly helpless and out of control.
Little did I know at the time, but this was to become my new normal. From that evening on I would wake with the startle reflex, 4-5 times a night feeling like I was having a heart attack. I slowly began to withdraw from society due to the fear of having ‘an attack’ in public. My children and husband kept me going, it was a dark time in my life.
Will this ever end?
“Please can you help me?” I was feeling defeated, praying the doctor would have some news as he was taking my ECG. “Mrs Robinson, there is nothing showing up to indicate a heart attack, it sounds to me like you have anxiety and panic attacks.” I visited the doctor 3 more times over the next 2 months, just to be sure I wasn’t having heart attacks.
I remember walking out of the doctors with a sense of relief, yet utterly confused, I couldn’t see the wood for the trees. How is this ever going end? The panic attacks had now been going on for months and the only other practitioner that I had been seeing was my trusty McTimoney chiropractor, Katie Holton. I first met Katie in 2006 when my second son was born, since then she has been instrumental in supporting me and my family and she knew what I was going through. During one particular appointment I remember breaking down begging Katie for help, nothing was working, I explained to her that I was practically drinking rescue remedy, I had cut out caffeine and alcohol, started yoga, tried visualisation, but it wasn’t stopping the attacks. She was concerned that my chiropractic adjustments weren’t holding which was a signal to her that there was something else going on, that is when she told me I needed to try acupuncture.
Acupuncture, the panic is over.
I will never forget walking into the acupuncture clinic for the first time. I had no expectation that this was going to fix me, infact I was pretty sceptical, but I was willing to try anything at this point. What happened in this first appointment was nothing short of miraculous. I discussed everything that I had experienced to that point, I cried recalling the fear and the feeling of isolation inside. As I sat on the treatment couch with needles in my back, all of a sudden I had a rush of excitement and uncontrollable laughter – what a release! I genuinely couldn’t remember the last time I had laughed, let alone uncontrollably.
I was intruiged as to how one treatment could have such a noticable imapct on my life, the incredible and palpable release of energy that had been blocked since that fateful night in September 2013. From that treatment on my panic attacks got less and less frequent, I continued to have acupuncture twice a week for about 4 to 6 weeks and after three months of having regular treatments, my panic attacks were near enough a thing of the past.
I have never experienced a treatment like acupuncture before, my practitioner provided me with a safe space where I felt held, supported with zero judgement. This in turn gave me the confidence and inspiration to want to train to be an acupuncturist myself, I graduated from The Acupuncture Academy in 2019 and feel so fortunate to be able to help others, if acupuncture can help me, it can help you too.
If you would like to try acupuncture or know more about it, please contact me using the link below.