Your world is caving in. It starts as a confusion.
You may have never had a heart attack, but you question if this is it. It sure feels like it.
You start pacing. You feel your chest get tighter.
Maybe you’ve just had too much coffee you think to yourself. This can’t be it though.
You try to regulate your breathing.
You tell yourself this over and over again as you try to focus on your breathing.
You’re carrying your heart, but your heart feels as though it’s made of stone.
It’s keeping you alive, yet it’s weighing you down—the irony.
Your world is caving in. You need to get this under control.
You can feel your heartbeat in your throat. You can feel them creeping up higher and higher in your throat—they’re lodged in there.
You feel like you’re losing control.
You place your hand on your chest to feel your pounding heart in hopes of making it slow down.
Your hand can’t really do much.
You can keep trying to reach, trying to get inside yourself to stop your pain.
Trying to tell yourself this is not real.
But it is real. Very, very real.
You’re fighting back the tears. You may not even know why they’re coming.
Why is this happening? You’re taken over by a powerless feeling.
A crippling feeling.
You’re immobilized yet pacing.
You’re impaired but just don’t understand why.
The tears are flowing subtly. You’re still fighting.
It’s inconceivable how to some people, this may not seem real. This may not be valid.
I want to tell you that it’s very real and very scary and not in the least bit shameful.
But most importantly, it’s real and not shameful.
Don’t be ashamed.
Don’t be apologetic.
Don’t be embarrassed.
Don’t let anyone belittle you for something you’re struggling with.
Get the help you need and know you truly are not the only one struggling with this. Get the help you need. It will get worse before it gets better.
But please, get the help you need.
As isolating as it is, as taboo as it may seem, let us try to break the notion that mental health is not as important as physical health.