Driving, particularly on highways, has been my biggest challenge since I began dealing with panic disorder. Although my first panic attack happened at home while I was getting ready for work, almost every one since has happened while behind the wheel. At my worst point, I would even start to panic in the drive-through or while sitting at a traffic light. I've had full-blown panic attacks while driving down streets with no traffic at all. Going to and from work was a daily challenge and I did not venture anywhere if it was not absolutely necessary. This was just a few months ago.
Since then, thanks to medication, and with the help of lifestyle changes and changing the way I think, I have made tremendous strides that I am excited to share here. I made the 3.5 hour highway drive to go the beach the other day! Only people who have experienced anxiety and panic or been close with someone who has could understand how big of a feat this could be. Having once spent months taking the scenic route to work every day to avoid a 2 mile stretch of Keystone Avenue, driving 215 miles on interstate highways is a major step for me!
To anyone out there sitting at the bottom, feeling trapped, scared, and hopeless, please realize there is hope out there! You just have to be persistent and keep a positive outlook and you will beat this thing!
If you treat every situation as a life and death matter, you'll die a lot of times. ~Dean Smith