Choosing Wonder IS the easiest choice. Wonder expresses how much you value the feelings of anxiety and how badly you want to heal those feelings. Amber Rae offers some amazing advice in her authentic book, “Choose Wonder over Worry.”
I have read and continue to read this incredible book I found by chance called, “Choose Wonder Over Worry,” by Amber Rae. Let me say, I give this book 10 out of 5 stars because 5 just doesn’t seem like enough.
I have been through a lot in my life and I don’t remember experiencing noteworthy anxiety until I was in my early 20’s. Now, after years of suffering, reading blogs, forums, medical journals, books, anything that would help me understand and overcome this intense fear I had inside, I found this book.
This book was the first thing that truly resonated with me and it’s taken me so long to write this blog because I couldn’t think of the right words to express to everyone of how invaluable this book became in my healing journey.
While I read this book, I have become obsessed with highlighting the best parts. When I finished reading, I had highlighted nearly the whole book. Every chapter fulfills the lessons I need in order to be the best me and offer my best self everyday to everyone.
She adds journal posts to the end of almost every chapter called, “Journal Into Wonder.” I am going to write posts journaling my entries so I can find my awesome fellow “wonder writers” who want to share in this healing journey together.
I connected with Worry when I was in my early 20’s right after my son was born. I had always had a little cautious voice inside telling me to be careful, make smart choices, and I was not great at listening to it. The worrying really began when I was responsible for another human life with the birth of my first child.
Suddenly the world was more dangerous, the emotional roller coasters were more harmful, and I was all around terrified about how all this would affect the wellbeing of this tiny human that was entrusted to me. I started having anxiety attacks when he was about 6 months old, and soon after, I developed panic attacks and phobias of driving and being alone. My relationship with Worry became a 10+ year quest to balancing my internal fear with the reality and faith of being alive.
My Relationship with Wonder
Wonder was never easy for me to comprehend, even though I have a naturally curious personality. I considered myself to be a logistical person, everything had to make sense in a realistic way.
The concept of wonder is fairly new to me still. Prior to reading this book, I would allow myself to get anxious when I was feeling anxious. Now, I think about the meaning behind the anxiety and try to be patient with myself throughout the observation and consideration of what is going on to cause the anxiety.
I would say wonder has opened my mind to exploring what hides beneath the anxiety, the fear, the phobias to discover how to heal myself.
I encourage you again to grab this book and get involved in this impromptu conversation digging into Wonder and Worry. If you are suffering from Panic attacks or anxiety attacks, I know you will appreciate the work of Amber Rae.
I suspect you’re reading this because there are aspects of yourself that you want to discover and express. I wrote this book to coax that out of you. To show what’s possible when wonder leads the way.
Have you lived with panic disorder? Have you been told it has no cure? Well I am here to squash that belief by telling my own story and why I believe panic disorder is not a life sentence.
I think research is flawed on the topic of panic disorder. I have been diagnosed with Panic Disorder, which according to the symptoms, I definitely agree that I have (had) panic disorder for a period of time. Let me give you a some information.
I developed panic attacks after my son was born 11 years ago. Prior to his birth, I was a soldier. I never feared things out loud. I was scared all the time but never let the fear stop me from living my life.
In my life, I had experienced many of the phobias or fears people live with everyday. For example, I have been stuck on the road in the middle of nowhere when a tornado came out of the sky and right for the road I was on. I have been stuck in an elevator on a cruise ship with my aunt and 2 other people when the elevator lost power, dropped between floors, and stopped functioning. I had viral pneumonia after my trip to Bali, and I stopped breathing in front of my two children. I was in a relationship with a man who threw my head into a window sill and I was trauma hawked to a trauma hospital with bleeding in my brain. I was in a hit and run car accident when a man decided he would kidnap my two friends and I. I had my heart broken when my first love hung himself from a swing set. I watched a dear friend die right in front of me from a drug overdose and I called for help that didn’t make it in time. I attempted suicide nearly 3 times and one of those times, I barely survived. I have been in numerous fist fights, including with girls 3 times my size, for bullying my handicap brother or anyone who couldn’t defend themselves, and I didn’t get killed. I got jumped at a skating rink for no reason in which I was attacked by a man and 3 women when I was 14. I suffered severe injuries and I vowed to never let myself be caught like that again. I traveled to a country that I knew nothing about and had no friends or familiar people to meet there for 5 weeks by myself. I have had to endure over 10 surgeries. I gave birth by emergency c-section when my child was born and endured 2 years of him screaming till he lost his voice or passed out because he is autistic. I sat through over 50 funerals before I turned 20. And the list goes on and on.
When I think about all the times in my life where fear should have captured my attention, but didn’t, I cannot imagine panic. Logically, I question why? Why is it so? Why should I live with panic now after all I survived already?
There are too many things we are conditioned to believe as society. This is something I call a mass belief. The definition of belief is an acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists. So therefore, mass belief is an acceptance by a large group that something is true and exists.
I can’t remember where I read this, but an author wrote about mass beliefs. When people all believe something exists, or something is a certain way, the spiritual, physical and mental belief becomes the reality. Interesting how the truth can change when everyone believes the same story.
When I apply that reasoning to panic disorder, I learn that because it has been written that panic disorder has no cure we must believe it is with us forever and we are are doomed to live our lives in fear.
…. well I am here to tell you that it isn’t true.
I have never ever followed the mass beliefs nor do I care if that makes me an outlier of scientific numerations. The reason is due in large part to my belief in evolutionary theories. For example, what we believed, and what I was taught in school, about our solar system is that we have 9 planets. Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune & Pluto. Now they have determined that Pluto is a dwarf planet and therefore doesn’t constitute a planet in the solar system anymore, so we now have 8 planets. Furthermore, there were 5 oceans, now there are only 4 oceans. If you ask a school aged child how many oceans there are, they will tell you there are 4; Atlantic, Pacific, Indian and Arctic. I remember the Antarctic Ocean, and I additionally remember being taught in school that the Gulf of Mexico was an ocean too.
When you think of how evolutionary theories have changed due to access of new information or simplifying, we find that nothing in the world is set in stone. The main reason I shared these two examples are because no one thought it was weird that educators proved a theory, that trickled down to the public and became a mass belief. Yes, they reevaluated the true facts and realized it wasn’t accurately describing what was real, but an entire ocean and planet of the solar system that existed in science books when I was a child, is no longer true.
Much like a google search on panic disorder will yield results that you are doomed for a life of panic attacks, I disagree. Panic attacks are just a phase in life, a way to remind us to pay attention to ourselves. Science has no evidence to prove that this is forever, other than the words or experiences of a panicker who feels the disorder is forever. Let that sink in for a moment, do you want to be panicking forever? My answer is HELL NO!
Science of Panic Disorder
Researchers have said that panic disorder is a chemical imbalance. That panic comes from an imbalance in neurotransmitters.
Naturally occurring chemical messengers, known as neurotransmitters, send information throughout the brain. The human brain is thought to have hundreds of these different types of neurotransmitters, and biological theories suggest that a person can become more susceptible to developing panic disorder symptoms if one or more of these neurotransmitters do not remain balanced.
Hold on for one moment, let’s look at this more prominently. A chemical imbalance is also where Bipolar Disorder comes from, which science has proven involves the neurotransmitters being damaged in production causing severe symptoms of high-highs and low-lows, but now it is said that panic disorder is doing the same?
Let me level with you, if you want to have panic attacks forever, by all means, have it your way, science will support you. However, if you are like me and believe that you have the power to heal this, then start to believe it now.
I didn’t drive for 6 years, then I decided I was done being a victim to panic attacks and panic disorder. I didn’t need medication or therapy to change my outcome, I simply needed a belief in myself, to let go of the fear of a panic attack, and push myself past the discomfort. Anxiety is natural and everyone has it, but I will not be stopped by sudden moments of intense fear anymore because they are not true and they manifest through me. My chemicals will heal with my belief in being stronger than the panic and by my ability to take charge and live, instead of letting life happen to me.
You are strong for having fought a panic attack and won, therefore you are strong enough to believe this is not forever. The science of the brain will never be solved. Brain mapping is never going to be possible in my opinion, because the brain is the epicenter of evolution and change.
The brain is too strong and resilient for any scientists to make sense of it. That my friends is why I choose to believe that EVERYTHING is curable if we choose to believe it is. Just like many cancer patients are cured out of the blue, Panic disorder is curable and I am proving that.
You want to know the secret to ending panic disorder? Do you want to know how you stop yourself from panicking? It’s incredibly simple, and took me far too long to realize, you must stand up to it! Believe in something other than the doom and gloom, believe that there is something bigger than you out there and that what is meant to be will be with or without your acceptance.
I will not allow myself to dwell in the darkest parts of my mind, I will believe in something bigger and better because I know that my brain is a gift from my higher power and no human will ever tell me that it is not working.
The only words that are going through my head is “why?”
Three letters and a world of uncertainty behind what they might mean for me, what the answer might be.
Will I be ready to hear the answer?
… I am sure you are wondering why I am asking why? Or maybe you think I am losing it and my journey is too dramatic for you? I am too negative? Too much for you?
Well this might not surprise you but why do you think I don’t want to burden anyone anymore? Because of this ……
I ask myself, my few friends I know still care, and my family why am I like this? Why do I have to live like this? Why can’t I be surface-level normal like everyone else, even with medication?
I don’t know that I want to know the answer. Perhaps the answer may be exactly the damage I will not be brave enough to survive. So I will live with the Why’s until I am strong enough, brave enough, to hear the reason and believe it.
Hopefully the answer to Why will not matter anymore by then.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you already know I am sick. I decided to go to the walk-in clinic because this cold (possibly bronchitis) is knocking me on my butt. I had to give myself a breathing treatment already and have a painful, awful cough! I am so tired and can’t sleep because of the cough. I am so ready to get some antibiotics and steroids. However, I am sitting here in the waiting room ready to jump out of my own skin! Anyone else ever get super uncomfortable being in public or in a waiting room? I am just feeling like everyone is staring at me and I hate the feeling. Having anxiety for me is like a stepping stone to a panic attack. I am trying to be strong and just force myself to think about anything else (thus the reason for blogging). How do you get through being in a crowded waiting room with panic attacks? Please tell me your secrets peeps! Xo