I woke up at 6 this morning and ended up crying.

It was the remanent of a panic attack. One of those leftover things. I get panic attacks so often that after they are done most of what i feel is frustration that I still get them. Despite quarantine, I’ve been doing quite well with having minimal panic attacks.

This one was actually sparked by a pretty vicious nightmare that I was trapped in. A nightmare about physical abuse and being trapped in a relationship. Something that hasn’t happened to me before. It was one of those nightmares that in retrospect makes little sense; I mean, I’m no dream interpreter. I remember pieces still vividly. Mostly what I remember is the absolute state of fear I was in.

Sick as it is, I woke up and wrote it down. Not the dream. I don’t need a repeat of physical abuse. What I recorded was how I felt as I lay there in the morning, under the tears and the panic. I had never known fear like it. My heart banged so hard in my chest that I thought it might get out of its cage and my head swam fuzzily. My cat perked up from where she slept and curled up ontop of me for a long time as if to help me get through what I was feeling.

I needed to understand what it was about that fear that had thrown me about so badly. I’m not sure I have any conclusive evidence about it. All I know is that I’ve never felt as afraid as I was when I woke up.

My day ended up being thrown by the nightmare. I tried to sleep a little more but it just resulted in more nightmares. So I gave up and worked on my writing. I tried writing cute and it was a struggle. I tried writing angst and it was rip-up-worthy. I gave up at my minimum goal and proceeded to eat a lot of pasta to make myself feel better.

Sometimes what we dream affects our next day experiences.

To say I’m hoping for quiet sleep tonight is an understatement

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Stacie Hanson