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Panic Attacks for the Colored Girl when Corporate America wasn’t enough.

If you’ve ever had a panic attack, then you know just how soul crushing and awful they can be. A wave of sorrow comes over you. Then comes the heavy breathing. Panting, damn near hyperventilating. Then the walls close in. You feel hopeless, scared, depressed, angry, all at the same time. This happened to me today in the middle of rush hour traffic on Mount Vernon Highway.

I called Phillip because I know in those moments, I need to talk. Otherwise I will come unglued. He is very good at listening. Letting me cry. And I did. My voice cracked and the pain coming from the sound of my own voice reverberated down my spine with the sting of 1000 needles. He listened. I wept. I told him that the grind of the day to day was gnawing away at me. That I feel trapped by the paycheck and the benefits. That I wanted to be free. He listened as I let go of all my feelings of inadequacy and strife. Once I let it all go, he responded:

“Baby. We have to create the lives that we want. You love yoga. Meditation. Travel and your family. Those are the things you must put your energy into. Not a meaningless job without purpose, or a social standing. But those things that make you, that make us….happy.”

I sat in traffic. And I listened. Deeply. And I heard EVERYTHING. My breathing settled. The walls opened up. My voice found its strength. And I simply answered “thank you for reminding where my purpose and joy lies.”

Where does your purpose and joy lie? Do the thing. Pack the bag. Read the book. WRITE the book. Love your life. It’s the only one you’re going to get.

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