the driving cringe part three
i was fumbling through the laundry basket full of clean clothes. i was looking for something to throw on to go to my appointment. i had a migraine headache, which i had very frequently. my heart was beating quickly. my body felt weak. i couldn’t seem to catch my breathe. i felt a tremendous amount of panic and fear but i didn’t know why. i was having a panic attack.
somehow i got in the car and was able to drive myself to my appointment. it was my first appointment with the psychologist and for some reason even the thought of talking about my car accident sent me into major panic. it was a primal instinct, not something i could reason away (what i now know as my fight or flight instinct).
i sat on his couch and the words slowly came spilling out. the words about how difficult life had become. i could hardly speak a word without a shower of tears. i went through many tissues. and somehow fumbled through telling him my problems. it was not without difficulty.
but i remember the moment he explained that what i was feeling was normal. that what i had was called post traumatic stress disorder. that he could help me deal with my fears and cringing while driving. that i could learn ways to cope with my emotions and car fears. and i also remember feeling relieved. i was finally able to speak with someone who understood. you mean i wasn’t crazy? and it was the first meeting of many that set me on the path of healing. and i would eventually get better about driving and riding in a car. yes, there are still days that i jump when in a car. but these occurrences are few and far between now. i have learned how to move on with my life. i have learned how to not let it bother me as much as it used to. there is no way to be sure that i will never be in a car accident again, but i have let it go. there are so many things that we are not in control of anyways. i have learned to focus on what i am in control of in my life.