Shattering. Falling. Collapsing. Everything is going wrong, all at once. As soon as you turn away from one problem, there’s another one plaguing your mind. There are too many to handle. Dozens and dozens. You know, intellectually, that there is no big deal. But it doesn’t matter.

Your brain is full and buzzing. You can’t sleep, which just makes everything worse. The cortisol pumping through your bloodstream feels like a physical mass, speeding up your heart rate, tensing your muscles, making everything feel like it’s about to explode.

Anxiety attacks suck. In my case, they come on just as often when everything is going right. I’ve been successfully fending off depression, filling my days with more fulfilling activity. Making more plans. Apparently the response to my deciding that, just maybe, some things matter is to start feeling like everything matters.

It’s not surprising, from this perspective, that I tend towards a cycle between anxiety and depression. There is some part of me that is extremely tempted to shut everything down again. Stop making new plans. Lessen my responsibilities. Anything to make this constant, wearying pounding in my chest and my head go away.

I have never found a technique to deal with anxiety on this level. I don’t like relying on medication for it. The effects are unpredictable and often transient. I’m really not sure what to do, though. I feel trapped. I feel out of control of my own mind and body.

Anxiety attacks suck.