Rainboteers and everyone,
I just had the most interesting experience. I want to share it with you, because I know we suffer from the same scary feelings and perceptions.
I felt an attack coming on, but I ignored it and decided to go to the grocery store, get a little exercise (very little), and enjoy the fresh air.
I sometimes forget to eat, so I may have been hypoglycemic, which can't be helpful to my overall condition, but....
I went to the grocery store and the attack came on full force. I asked Jesus to please take it away; I felt a little easing of it as I walked along. But it came back and blossomed into the real thing.
By the time I got home (this all took place within 30 minutes), I dove for some rolls and butter and ginger ale.
I took off my shoes and put on my slippers and sat on the edge of the bed and thought, "If there's nothing to be afraid of, why am I afraid?" I asked myself that question over and over. I could not stop asking it. I just kept going and going, not really intending to repeat it, but just really finding the question in the deepest part of me. (I had decided not to take an ativan until I could no longer bear it, so I wasn't there yet.)
I began to really think about the question and to intellectually check out its premise: that there is nothing to worry about. I didn't dwell on any possible answer to the question, but I simply kept asking it (to myself, of course).
By the 15th time, the panic began to disappear. The impending doom went away, and I am left now with bit of shakiness, but nothing like the fear I had just felt minutes earlier.
I suppose what this is autosuggestion; it may not be a permanent solution, but it has afforded me some relief. We'll see how temporary it is or how permanent it is in the next several hours.
I thought it was worth mentioning, though. Perhaps we can use our wills to counter whatever mischief our unconscious is doing and keep the Elmer's glue out of the carburetor!