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Author Topic: Feeling lost and hopeless  (Read 191 times)

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Offline jalapeno

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Feeling lost and hopeless
« on: May 30, 2014, 03:58:28 PM »
Okay, so this is my first post. I've looking at the posts on this site on and off for the past 8 months and am finally deciding to write one. It'll be kind of long... I'm sorry.

Here's the backdrop:
I'm 19- just a few months shy of 20. I've been suffering from anxiety attacks since just before my 17th birthday when I unknowingly consumed a "special brownie".
I've had severe anxiety attacks since then. Maybe one every few months- normally they would occur while I was on my way home. But I had one in class, and I had to run out the door and to the bathroom to splash water on my face..
I suffered from a severe episode in the back of Walmart (near the toys and electronics) just a few days before high school graduation. When it hit me, I felt like I was in space... Like there was no air, no gravity, and everything around me felt burning hot, and sounded so distant and muffled. My best friend was right next to me- talking to me- but it sounded like he was across the room from me. I felt like I was going to pass out so I was running out of the store and I was grabbing my hair, pulling it, and I was scratching at my skin because I felt nonexistent. I felt like I was in a dream. I ended up scarring on my arm and legs.
Since then, I developed a fear of going into Walmart. I even gave my experience a name; "Walmart feeling". I would try to go in when I felt brave enough- sometimes I could last up to an hour in there! Sometimes I could barely stand to look at the doors... That all evolved and eventually I got the "Walmart feeling" in every store, and got to the point where I would just all together not leave the car due to the fear of having panic attacks. Now, I've been housebound for approximately 3 1/2 months. I cant leave the property without feeling dizzy, or having a panic attack. It's awful.

The past 8 months have been treacherous... I'm sleep deprived. Sleep on a couch at 1, wake up at 5:30 because the people who sleep at like 9 wake up to make coffee and slam cabinet doors... My anxiety attacks worsened and I developed severe chest pains that would accompany the attacks. I got those every single night.. One night in February it was so bad that I woke in the middle of an ongoing attack and felt like I was dead- I felt nothing. I ended up digging my nails into face and that scarred. (In case you haven't caught on, I feel nothing but fear when I have these attacks- I hurt myself to make sure I'm still alive.) I would get the late, around 9 or 10, and I didn't have a room at the time so I was sleeping in the living room. Nothing is worse than having a panic attack while your family looks at you and tells you to "stop acting crazy" and "stop begging for attention"... They have no idea what this is like... To have an anxiety attack at 9 PM, and wake up still feeling dead and nonexistent all throughout the next day...

I feel so hopeless... Sometimes they get so bad that I'm afraid if I go to bed, I may not wake up. So I text everybody that means anything to me, and I just tell them how much they mean to me, because if something were to happen after an anxiety attack- I want everyone to know I care and stuff... I just don't know. I feel so incredibly hopeless. I feel like I have no future, and I sure as heck don't wanna go through all this. I just want to be normal again. Not housebound and dependent on everyone... It scares me so much and I cry and worry. It's just this awful chest pain where it feels like my chest is so tight it'll shatter, or it feels so empty but like a balloon that will pop. I focus on my breathing and it feels labored, and it exhausts me- I keep thinking "what if I stop breathing", "what can I do to get air in my lungs fast", "what if my throat and airways are swelling shut"? I feel so weak and shaky, I can't thing straight- I'm dizzy- maybe I'm dying? I'm so scared I won't live to see 21.... There's so much to feeling like this, it's just so unexplainable...

Anyways.
I eventually found a doctor who does house-calls because I was afraid to see my doctor last August- the hospital I go to is 40 minutes away from me..
Well my new doctor, the house-call doctor, instantly diagnosed me with depression and GAD. I told her about my ***** attempts and how I'm afraid to take pills now because I don't want to relapse. She still prescribed me Escitalopram (the generic version of Lexapro). She started me off on 5mg. I'm still afraid to take it... Has anyone had any experience with this? Or Xanax? (She'll be stopping by soon to give me a prescription for that, too, because I had such a severe anxiety attack last night around 7 that made me vomit. Then, I was crying all night and have a panic attack while I was crying..)

I tried to keep this short... But if anyone has had any experience with Escitalopram or Lexapro (as the only med), and Xanax as the "on the spot" solution, can you please give me advice?... Because I'm scared out of my mind...
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Online MobileChucko

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Re: Feeling lost and hopeless
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2014, 05:05:04 PM »
Hello Jalapeno...  Welcome to Anxiety Zone!  My name is Chuck, and I am one of the Global Moderators here on the site.

You are now a member of our community, where you will find support and advice from other members in similar situations.   It's always nice to find someone else who understands, and to know you're not alone.

We have sections in the forum that address specific concerns, so feel free to post or start a new topic in the section that best fits your situation.  Feel free to explore the rest of the forum.  You may find the other topics helpful, and you may be able to offer advice or support to someone else.

We also have a chat room for members over the age of 18.  Once you have made three meaningful posts, you will be allowed access to the chat room.

Jalapeno, I am on Citalopram (Celexa), which is the sister drug to Escitalopram (Lexapro).  They are basically the same drug, with the Lexapro being a little more refined/specific.  I have been on a therapeutic dose for exactly six months now, and it has turned my life around for the better.  I also suffer from panic disorder with panic attacks.  I haven't had a panic attack in some four months now. and generally I feel 90-95% better.

Your doctor was wise to want to start you on 5 mg, as a low dose starting off can help to limit any possible side effects from the Lexapro.  Some people have no side effects when starting an  anti-depressant, others may have mild ones, and some more severe.  I had some pretty severe start-up side effects, but they only lasted 2-3 weeks, and then diminished rapidly.

Anti-depressants take a long time to work, Jalapeno.  One will usually see degrees of improvement between 3 to 12 weeks of being on a therapeutic dose, and the lowest therapeutic dose for Lexapro is 10 mg.

Again, welcome to Anxiety Zone.  The very best to you, Jalapeno!...  Chuck :grinning-smiley-003:
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Offline Julie A. Cook

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Re: Feeling lost and hopeless
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2014, 08:15:39 PM »
Jalaapeno, we're all with you and have felt exactly what you are feeling.  Take the :exaapro and the =xanax.  These thigs quiet your nerves.
And try not to be too afraid.  The more afriad you make yourself, themore you're stoking the fires of cortisol.

Little by little, you'll start to feel better.  It takes time, patience and courage.  But, don't give up.  There are many of us out there just like you.

Good luck as you recover, and you will.

Julie
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Offline jalapeno

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Re: Feeling lost and hopeless
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2014, 09:25:07 PM »
Thank you so much, Julie. ):
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Offline Jessicaaa

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Re: Feeling lost and hopeless
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2014, 01:01:21 AM »
Hey Jalapeno,
The first time my doctor gave me Xanax I was scared to take it too.... But when I did, I realized how much it helped, and was no longer afraid of it. I am sure you will realize this too!
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Offline jalapeno

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Re: Feeling lost and hopeless
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2014, 01:26:36 PM »
Thank you so much Jessicaaa! I've been super nervous about it, because the only people I know who have ever taken it just did it for the "high"   :angry-smiley-034:
It's great to hear someone else took it for the right reason and that it helped. :happy0151:
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