I am a 24 year-old single woman. I recently graduated from college and now I work in a reputed marketing company in the city. I live close to work, sharing an apartment with a good friend from school.
I haven’t dated seriously in about a year, since I broke up with my boyfriend from college, so I can fully focus on my career.
Six months ago, my father had a heart attack. Mother called me at work to let me know. I was under a lot of stress that day preparing for a presentation. I had a lot on my plate at work, but I did leave early that day and took a couple of days off to stay home with my parents. My dad survived the heart attack, but he still has not been able to go back to his normal level of activity.
I had my first panic attack on a Wednesday morning, just a couple of days after being back to work. I was on the elevator, going up to my office. It was getting rather crowded. I first noticed it was hard to breathe. I felt pressure on my chest and my heart pounding. My hands and lips felt cold and sweaty. I thought I was going to die right then and there. I had never felt such fear, such utter panic, in my life.
Since then, I’ve had another handful of episodes like this. In each of them I’ve been convinced that I’m dying. By now I’ve been to the ER on two occasions and had EKG’s, ultrasounds and stress tests done; but there is nothing wrong with my heart.
I havent told anybody about these attacks. I no longer take elevators and since I had an attack in the bus a few days ago I am thinking about avoiding public transportation as well.