About ten years ago when my doctor diagnosed me as having panic attacks I dismissed it using one of my all time favourite phrases; somewhat ironic in the circumstances, ‘crazy talk’.

Clearly, my crippling symptoms indicated a massive brain tumour, a heart condition or something as yet undiscovered that would catapult me to the dizzy heights of specialness. I demanded the credible diagnosis of a tangible and rare illness, like Wolf Parker White Syndrome or the re-emergence of rickets. There would be a documentary made about my incredibly fascinating illness, from which I would obviously make a full recovery and go on to lead a full and happy life.

I agree this sounds flippant, but the (at this stage, still alleged) panic attacks had become so frequent I was unable to hide them anymore and confessing to those around me that I was ‘panicking’ – particularly in a professional capacity – was about as appealing as a shit flavoured milkshake.

But as with so many things, it turns out I was distinctly average. Garden variety panic attacks was the initial diagnosis. ‘

Fix me!’ I shouted to any professional within earshot. ‘I’m an important person (I’m not) with important things to do (I hadn’t).’

These panicdotes are my frank and honest tales of my ridiculous and humiliating experiences with panic and anxiety, with a hearty does of wondering – given the state of things – ‘why isn’t everyone else freaking out as well?’

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