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Stress Out of Control

Sometimes after a traumatic event, like an accident or an unexpected assault, something traumatic we’ve seen (even certain movies), we are in a natural disaster, and so on, we can feel like all out of control, a victim of circumstance — we have done nothing to deserve what has happened and we have been helpless to prevent it in the first place. Often what follows is a sense of vulnerability and a real fear of that event happening again. In fact, we may re-live that event over and over again in spite of every effort to not think about it. So this makes us feel even more vulnerable, because not only are our emotions seemingly out of control, but our thoughts are as well.

In one year I was harassed, assaulted and stocked. At the time I was also under a lot of pressure, working full time and going to night school in university to obtain my bachelors degree. Everything caught up to me, and I was more than just burned out. I had to take over a year off of work because I was unable to function even doing normal tasks, like cooking and light house-keeping. I had to carefully plan my excursions. If I was going to the store, I had to make sure I was well rested and perhaps even had someone to accompany me. If I was having a bad day, I would have a panic attack while standing in line at the grocery store, or even walking down the street. I’d quickly drop everything and get home as fast as I could, my heart pounding.

This “panic” or “anxiety” attack was a fear that would come over me when I didn’t expect it. This is a common occurrence for victims of crime or when anything happens suddenly and without warning. The after-effects can be and are debilitating. People said I should get counseling. So I went through counseling, but even this didn’t seem to help. I read books about fear and anxiety disorders, I tried to rest and even went to work part-time, yet still I was having unexpected anxiety attacks. Even after I got married and quit my job to begin this wonderful life as a married woman, I found myself battling anxiety attacks. I really believed that having a husband to share my burdens with would remove the anxiety, but it didn’t. My husband tried to help as much as possible, but he couldn’t remove the fear I had. I believed that once we moved away from the scene of the crimes (the city) and out into a beautiful resort area, that I’d be free from anxiety attacks. At first, this did help because it was quieter, I was surrounded by God’s nature, and I had a short walk to the shores of one of the largest inland lakes in the world. I had never seen such a beautiful lake in all my life! In spite of this, it did not completely remove the anxiety problems I was suffering with.

So I began a renewed search for the answers that would free me from these anxiety attacks. Since I had read other books that had only put a bandage on the problem, I started researching the Bible. It was here that I discovered the real source of my problem that no book I had ever read about anxiety or panic attacks had ever even mentioned. I’ll share this in the next chapter.

Curses For Stress