The Perfect Storm

Today was kind of a rough day for me (and by rough I'm referring to the panic attack I had in the middle of the Diamondbacks stadium with hundreds of baseball fans walking past: tears streaming down my face, sweat pooling in all sorts of crevices on my body, hands shaking, unable to catch my breath). Even though this happened today, I believe the shittiness of the situation can actually be traced back to last night.

Last night I had a great night. Last night I didn't get home until three in the morning. Last night I reached a level of intoxication that many probably shouldn't even attempt. I'm not bragging. I do not condone this nor do I see the lure of reaching that level of alcohol consumption; but it occasionally happens. Also, while it is obvious by some of my drink recipes posts that I enjoy adult beverages on a more frequent than infrequent basis -- my goal when imbibing is not to get obliterated, at least not so much any more.

So as this little tale goes, it was a late night for me. Husband and I were out with a great group of co-alcohol-conspirators partaking in the evening as we watched The Walkens, a cover-band at a casino in Gilbert. There were lots of laughs, and people watching, and dancing, and an old man and his escort, and a girl booty-popping so intensely she fell multiple times, and I drank three too many redbull and vodkas (because redbull and vodka is never a good idea) in addition to my other choices. My drink choices may seem like an insignificant detail, but these drinks are actually like some slimy informant you have to force out of hiding.

What you may or may not know about me is that I'm not a huge caffeine drinker. Caffeine genuinely alters my mind, mood, and sometimes even physical well being so completely, I have to plan for it. My husband is the one who most often has to deal with the crazy I become after a little caffeine. If I don't have some sort of physical activity already in the works, my mind begins punching through my scalp in so many different directions, it is impossible for me to keep up...with me. I randomly pounce on my husband and/or hide from him all over the house. Leah and I run laps around our kitchen and living room each of us taking turns hiding from each other. Sometimes I create impromptu beginning gymnastics classes for myself. Most often I just antagonize the shit out of my husband. There are lots of P90x style punches and kicks in his general direction (not actually making contact, just close enough that he feels a bit of a breeze) and lots of tickle jabs while emitting all kinds of never before made sounds. And of course there is lots of random dancing. My husband is an extremely patient man.

So, caffeine effects me. Even though I passed out when we got home last night, the redbull still coursing through my veins forced me to wake up at 7 o'clock this morning because it is an asshole. I am incapable of functioning on so little sleep and I obviously didn't feel too great because of the drinking, and so, I didn't do a whole lot before the game. I was basically a zombie. I didn't want to be a total party pooper, all lethargic at the game, and so we stopped at Starbucks a few blocks from the stadium. This meant I had to finish my drink prior to entering the stadium.[This was not a good idea.]

It was about 106 today. For some reason we had to stand in this ridiculously long line to get our bags checked. I'm not sure if I'm exaggerating, but I'm fairly certain we were standing in the hot sun for like a half hour. It was crazy. I started to feel uncomfortable. I was hot, physically tired, and dehydrated already because of my hangover. Then, I really started to feel uncomfortable and began seeking out little spots of shade from surrounding poles and signs which probably brought the temperature to a cool 102.

Then, I started panicking. I just didn't feel normal. I felt like David at the Dentist actually, wondering if I was always going to feel like this...worrying I'd somehow messed up my body and forced it into some hangover-y/caffeine riddled state of paranoia that I was never going to get out of. I didn't know what to do because I felt just like I did on the plane when I was having that panic attack, but I was outside. It was like the heat was making me claustrophobic and I had nowhere to go but into the stadium. The line was not moving.

I started to believe I was suffering from heat stroke. I was convinced I was going to pass out, and I genuinely think I was close to doing so. I was worried first-aid responders were going to have to be called. I considered my shitty, practically non-existent insurance. The line was inching forward at such an insignificant rate it seemed we were never going to get to the front. I considered just walking up and asking the staff if they would let me in, but couldn't bring myself to do it. People were cutting in line and when two middle-aged women smirking-ly squeezed their way in right in front of me, I had no problems telling them where the line actually started. I did have a hard time not grabbing each of their heads in an attempt to recreate a good old-fashioned Three Stooges head smash. The line was never ending.

When I did reach the front, and my purse was checked, I focused on getting myself inside the stadium where there was air conditioning. I didn't even wait for my husband or the two other couples we were with. I couldn't. Husband was calling me, but I just kept going. He didn't understand. My heart was beating so fast. I was crying and my tears were mixing with the sweat as it drenched my face and I hardly cared about all of the people around me, seeing me like this. I managed to score a spot behind a big pillar and kind of hid myself behind it with a bottle of water. My hands were shaking so badly, I couldn't even drink without water pouring everywhere. I couldn't talk to my husband without gasping for air. It was like I was drowning.

I don't really know how to explain something that I don't understand myself. I feel okay now, many hours later, but even for the rest of the game I had enough panic balancing on my ability to be rational, that I just couldn't enjoy myself. Mentally, I was in a whole separate world. I wish I could just tell myself I'm okay, and be okay.


  1. Heat.....caffeine.....alcohol......not enough sleep & sounds like definitely not enough water.....
    Tomorrow is a new day which I imagine will be filled with maximum water consumption and relaxing :-) Hope you feel better soon.


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