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I have a few friends who tell me I’m the calmest person they know and I find it hilarious. I can’t remember when my anxiety started, but my parents could tell you many stories that involve it. Between the ages of 9 and 11, I would have panic attacks consistently. It would always start with an insignificant worry (getting lost, sick, etc.) and snowball to the point where I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t stop trembling, and my fingers would go numb. I didn't know that was what a panic attack was because my parents labeled it as being “over tired”. It took me awhile to accept that I have panic attacks because I would justify it wasn’t THAT bad and I could function without medication. Accepting my anxiety helped me learn how to help myself and pay more attention to my self-care routine. Through years of trial and error, I’ve found ways to deal with my anxiety in a healthy way that have significantly reduced my panic attacks. I don’t tell a lot of people about my anxiety issues but when I have, I’m surprised by the understanding and compassion. I’m so lucky to have people in my life who either understands because of their own struggles or those who put in the effort to understand.