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Panic Attacks Happen At The Most Inoppurtune Times

Last Saturday was my birthday, which is why I wasn’t on duty writing for you. Forgive me? Overall, it was an average berthdays some highs some lows. My mom was sick with a stomach bug so she didn’t go to dinner with us which just really wasn’t the same.

But something much more jarring happened. I went to see the movie “I’m Pretty.” I dressed up, I mean come on people, it was my birthday. I went to the first showing of the day because it was cheapest and no one I knew wanted to go anyway. I was basically a pink cupcake, if you can imagine. Arriving early enough I chose just the right seat at just the right time. I missed all the ads which made me happy and we went right into movie preview, which I love. there were some funny one, a scary, one and lots of girly ones because of the film I was seeing.

But just as the movie began I felt the room close in on me and I felt the sensation I hate the most – anxiety. I began digging through my purse because I always have extra pills in there but couldn’t see well enough and had to go over next to where you throw away your unwanted popcorn. I found the container. EMPTY. This was all very bad and then I realized I hadn’t even taken my regular morning meds. Shit. Shit. Shit.

I started shaking and knew a big panic attack was coming, an attack so large I wouldn’t be able to handle it on my own. I walked out of the theater, interrupted the ticket taker and asked for a a manager. He told me to meet her at the front of the lobby. You would have thought I was climbing Everest, my breath was so laborious. An African-American woman met me there and seeing I was in distressed immediately got through the main questions: “Do you need an ambulance?” “Is there someone I should call?” “Do you have a medical condition?”

I was finally able to answer her with a “No, I am having a panic attack. I’ll be fine. But if I start crying don’t freak out.” At which point I began to bawl in the lobby of the theater. A bawling baby-pink cupcake. She called for napkins to be brought to the front and I attem pted to dry my tears, but they just would not stop. Every time I tried to speak she would say “Shhh, baby, you ain’t ready yet.” She also kept telling me that I was “ruinin’ my face” she recognized that I had made an effort to look pretty and there I was with mascara running black trails down my face.

At some point she took my hand, I don’t remember when but it was a good thing. Often when I am experiencing the beginnings of a panic attack I will simply put my hand on someone I trust’s shoulder. It grounds me. So here was this woman I did not know grounding me and taking my panic away.

She refunded me for the price of the ticket so I can try again or wait to rent it. Theaters have always been a place of anxiety for me and it stinks. I love the idea of going to the movies and the popcorn and a coke, but I guess I just can’t go alone. Crap.

Panic Attacks Happen At The Most Inoppurtune Times

 

 

APA Reference
Martin, E. (2018). Panic Attacks Happen At The Most Inoppurtune Times. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 16, 2019, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/being-bipolar/2018/04/27/panic-attacks-happen-at-the-most-inoppurtune-times/

 

Last updated: 2 May 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 2 May 2018
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.