Lungs and hips are equally overrated

Yesterday I had a panic attack so intense that my lips actually took on a slightly purple hue. (I wasn't breathing enough. Holding your breath and barely taking in oxygen will do that.) The real anxiety set in after I noticed this chromatic conundrum, meaning that any real "breathing" had stopped well before I even noticed the panic attack. This panic attack followed hard upon the heels of one from the previous day that was set off by something along the lines of a mess on the floor and husbands who don't know how to clean up the kitchen after they make lunch for themselves, good gravy. This afternoon I was struck with an ongoing wave of nausea so bizarre, coupled with a dull headachey feeling, that I was sure I was either pregnant (am not), or in the early throes of a Migraine of the Century (I wasn't). The nausea and headache were products of wait for it... a to-that-point-unidentified panic attack.

The only thing surer than panic attacks that come in little clusterfucks is this: Around these same days (usually, hem hem, hormonal ones) I cannot get over just how "fat" I am. I walk around avoiding reflective surfaces, entranced by the jiggle and the bounce. I stand or sit perfectly placidly, then suddenly realize that my skin must be literally about to pop open. I feel so intensely uncomfortable and disgusted.

I am never shocked, when I step on the crappy drugstore scale that hides under our bed, to see that the all-hallowed Number hasn't shot up. It's usually quite the same, if not a pound or two lower than it was a week previous (which is "the same" for all intents and purposes). Having been in the same five-pound swing zone for the past four and a half years, I know what's going to pop up on the digital display. Regardless of how accurate the scale's set point is (it weighs our ten-pound weights as 8.8, for example), the point is this: My weight does exactly it's supposed to. It stays basically the same. This is why we have a scale in the first place: So I can check in with reality from time to time to verify that I have not, in fact, gained or lost any weight (because the funhouse mirror can squeeze both ways).

It should be a given that, when I start getting these clusters of panic attacks, I must immediately stop looking in the mirror, just for a few days. I understand why the one event is comorbid, so to speak, with the other. My issue is that, hormones aside, I never see this coming, don't know what triggers these half-week-long episodes, and would prefer to REMEMBER for a change next month.

You know. So I can write "Breathe" and "Wear Sweats" and "Don't eat frosting right out of the can" on my To-Do list. Anyone want to send me an email about that in three weeks or so? That would be greeeat.


This nothing's more than matter.

There's rosemary, that's for remembrance; pray,
love, remember: and there is pansies. that's for thoughts.

Downtown Manhattan

Peter Pan at Carl Schurz Park, East End Avenue and East 86th Street

Bethesda Fountain, Central Park at 72nd Street

Well, you know.
As Jon Stewart said, you can't beat that view.