Five years (and two weeks) ago today, I was trapped in a week-long string of horrifying panic attacks. This followed over ten years of sleeplessness, anxiety, and irrational fears; as well as physical symptoms that were both a cause and response to all those anxieties.
Ultimately, God rescued me through the teaching of several ministers who shared principles and promises in Scripture that I (very imperfectly) put into action, relying on Jesus through whom I have freedom from the power of sin in my life.
Now, five years later, praise God, since gaining that understanding of Christ’s power alive inside me, I’ve not been crippled by a panic attack since. I’ve slept better since April 2015 than I ever have before. Most importantly, the prayer I prayed the evening of April 13, 2015, has been answered, when I cried out in desperation, “Oh God, please become more real to me!”
God has become a lot more real to me. I’ve seen Him do amazing things. I’m more convinced than ever about his power to free me and others from fear, anxiety, and panic.
That doesn’t mean I have never lapsed back into fear in my thinking, or have never been attacked by the enemy since. I have. I definitely have. In fact, it just happened two weeks ago, on the weekend of the five year anniversary from last time. I had been talking with several people who have been struggling with anxiety attacks, sleeplessness, and fearfulness. I had shared with them my own thoughts about dealing with these things. Soon after, I began experiencing shortness of breath and chest tightness, which coincided nicely with all the COVID stories that I have been reading. Without intending to, I started down a path of fear in my thinking that caused several late-night anxiety battles. And one early morning anxiety battle.
The difference now versus five years ago? That’s where it stops. At the battle. Because anxiety loses the battle. And then I go ride the bike trails with my four year old.
I’m still working on the book of my story. Am at about 40,000 words right now, and the first 8 chapters feel largely completed. It’s a memoir of sorts, covering everything from:
- Growing up in a homeschooled household back in the early 90’s when that was a weird thing to do.
- Cultivating animosity or disgust with my parents despite (because of?) being a largely Christian upbringing.
- Interactions with the prosperity gospel at several stages of my life.
- Irrational fears and anxieties that I held most of my life.
- Chronic insomnia.
- Dealing with chronic illnesses and the fear of having parents dealing with chronic illnesses.
- Thoughts and perspectives from my Mom, who has a similar story to tell as well.
- How God showed up to rescue me from fear, anxiety, and panic attacks, and how He can do the same for you!
Still plenty to do, but making more progress every day! Subscribe to the blog over on the right side to be notified when it’s all done!