Thursday, March 11, 2010

Panic attack? Hot flash? Heart attack?

I was giving a massage the other day when all of a sudden, I noticed my hands were shaking.  Not exhausted , tired shaking from doing deep massage work, but nervous, out of control shaking.  Of course, once I noticed that, I then moved on to notice a rapid heart rate, light headedness and heat.  Hot flash?    Maybe.  Freakin' out that I am going to faint during this massage?  At this point, definitely.  I thought I was going down.  That would be lovely wouldn't it?  To all of a sudden have your therapist drop to the floor?  To be laying on a comfy, warm massage table, totally relaxed, and all of a sudden the massage stops and you hear a thud?  Wow, I bet that's a massage she would have never forgotten!

I managed to calm myself down by focusing on the very relaxing music my clinic plays for our clients, I focused on the massage and the client, who had gotten some time away from her little ones to enjoy some time to herself.  I really didn't need to transfer my issues to her!  Maybe, though, I was taking on her energy and it just took me over.  I prefer to think it was that and not a hot flash.  A panic attack wouldn't be unheard of.  I've only had a few in my lifetime and I was able to attribute their onset to certain things.  Not this time.  According to my most recent doctor's appointment, I shouldn't be experiencing these things YET.  My mom had an emergency hysterectomy when she was 41, maybe 42 (my age), so I can't really ask her when menopause set in for her to try to gauge what I should expect based on genetics.

As soon as the massage was over, I ran to the office and grabbed the essential oil that we use on clients with "anxiety."  I think I sniffed that little bottle so hard that the oil came sucking out and right up my nose.  It did seem to help.  If it happens again, I am going to go one step further and drop a few drops under my tongue!  I can also assume that giving up caffeine may help, but I don't see that happening unless this little phenomena starts repeating itself on a reguar basis.


  1. I can't say for sure cuz who am I, but I had something similar happen. For me it was a combo of a very stressful job situation, lots of caffeine that week....and hormones. My mom always told me, "The women reach menopause late in our family" but I have since realized that my mom is not right. And I have also learned a lot about perimenopause, which is around for YEARS prior to actual menopause, which is defined as having gone with a complete 12 months with no period.
    That was a funny picture you painted of the poor client who would hear a thus as the therapist dropped to the floor (would the client get dressed first and then get help???)
    Anyway, I did see a cardiologist to make sure things were fine (they were) and one other tidbit I learned is to check for magnesium and potassium levels (mine were I say, meh--hormones).

  2. those are the symptoms i have when my blood sugar drops too may want to keep an eye on that.

  3. Glad to hear your client didn't have to worry about a thud!

    I'm curious about the music you play for your clients....


  4. well, i have had panic attacks, and you really feel like you are at the edge of the earth and blop you are about to falllll down it is pretty scarey... so i hope you aren't having them, i unfortunatley had my first one driving on a highway over a bridge... not fun, anyhow... loved the visual you painted of your client... and what was that oil u used? hope you are feeling better...
    shelley :)

  5. Yeah, I'm with the blood sugar drop diagnosis. I have to carry something in my purse at all times on the chance I can't get to food for too long a stretch of time. And that's not just because I'm a fattie. I start shaking and get light headed. My whole personality changes.

    But enough about me. I do think you should go to the dr. though. Women have to go through the craziest hormone things their entire lives, and peri or full on menopause has about a million different symptoms.

    Yeah, you can thank me later for this wonderful advice. Take care of yourself.