309: Panic Time

People panic for various reasons. Usually, panic accompanies some life-threatening event, like the time I looked up to see a Rottweiler (BIG, bad dog) in full charge at me across a back yard, snarling, fangs visible. I did not know he was safely chained until he hit the end of the chain and flipped over in the air. It took a good half hour to get over the shakies after that one.

People panic understandably when they perceive that their lives might be in danger. Everybody understands that. Paramedics are trained to recognize the signs of shock when they arrive at an accident, because panic is expected then. Some people, however, panic over things that are not exactly life-threatening. Things like a spider. Or a mouse. Or a snake – OK, that one could be life threatening, I’ll grant you.

Some people panic even when there really is nothing whatsoever to panic over: like getting into an elevator or other confined space, like a MRI diagnostic machine’s patient tube. Or a visit to the doctor (or the dentist). Even though you know you are very unlikely to die, the panic reaction still sets in, complete with full adrenalin rush.

I am having panic symptoms over a non-life-threatening event coming up: I am going to be boarding a plane (with my three cats) to leave Morocco on my way to Panama City, Panama.  For weeks now, I have packed and re-packed, looking for one more crevice where I can stuff one more item. It’s not like other vacations, where I know I am coming home – I am moving home, so what I can’t pack and take with me is getting left behind. Apocalypse.

My husband will remain in Morocco for a few weeks, settling the last items, closing the bank account after insurance reimbursements and selling the car, finishing off the last items of furniture, etc. Then, he will get to have his OWN panic attack as he boards his flight to Panama City, too.




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