Subway PanicDuring a particularly stressful point in my life, I remember that taking the subway became a battle.
I used to take the A train in New York from Dominican Harlem to classes I was taking downtown. From 125th to 59th street, the A train travels for about 10 minutes non
I have taken that trip in between those two streets countless times. However, towards the end of my time in New York -- with my money and friends dwindling -- somehow that trip became a nightmare.
I would be sitting on the train and then suddenly I would feel hypervigilant, as if I was going to become ill. Then, it would feel as if some floodgate burst open, and I began to become irrationaly worried about falling sick on the subway, passing out, or vomiting. I would become extremely nauseous. I felt I had to leave the train car immediately.
At least twice, possibly three times, I experienced these attacks. Upon reaching 59th street I would emerge from the car and then head up outside for some fresh air. At the time, I had no idea what motivated me to leave the train, especially because I would never be sick; now, I realize that I must have been under some incredible stress to have an attack like that.
Panic attacks are more common than people realize. They are yet another symptom of a lonely and out-of-place existence in a world with few companions and little understanding for the problems of another person.