“I think I had an unhappy childhood!” I announced to a therapist at the age of 58.
It’s amazing what my brain had done to hide that fact from me.
I’d developed a panic disorder at the age of 15. Terrified of the mental illness and sadness stalking my family, I’d self-medicated in high school, stashing a flask of vodka in my ever-present pocketbook. Over the next 40 years, however, with the help of anti-anxiety medication, I managed to build a wonderful life for myself. I married a loving husband, had two beautiful sons, and enjoyed success in several different careers.
In the skies above Oklahoma three years ago, in the middle of a book tour, I read about Tibetan monks who meditated so effectively that neuroscientists were studying their brains. “I want the brain of a monk,” I decided. I vowed to meditate my way from panic to peace.
I attended a retreat with a monk who’d cured his own panic disorder through meditation. I studied with other wise Buddhist teachers, and spent a year learning how to sit still. With the help of Somatic Experiencing and EMDR, two powerful therapies, I learned how to self-regulate and discharge the frightening physical symptoms of anxiety that had plagued me for decades….Continue reading at InspireMeToday.com.
Priscilla is the bestselling author of Learning to Breathe – My Yearlong Quest to Bring Calm to My Life and a co-author of The Faith Club.
Photo Credit: Gail Lynne Goodwin
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