Sometimes the trauma of grief leaves stubborn remnants, long after we’ve dealt with the hardest pain and missing. Christie Thomas knows deep grief wrapped in the hope of Christ. As a children’s author with a unique perspective, I asked Christie to share her story of anxiety flares in grief and 4 steps to calm anxiety.
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I jogged through the park, keeping pace with the music in my earbuds. As I passed the fire station, something caught my eye. A nearly-crushed vehicle sat placidly in their back parking lot, probably for training purposes.
I stopped short, suddenly unable to jog any further. My heart pounded. Memories surfaced — memories I felt were physically choking me.
. . . police officers at the door late at night telling us my sister wouldn’t be coming home.
. . . pictures of a crushed car, the car I gave her the keys to that morning.
I stood there, face in my trembling hands, trying not to break down in the middle of the path, trying to breathe again, to slow down my heart rate.
I wasn’t used to losing control like this. It had been years since my sister’s death and I thought I had dealt with the grief. But this was an anxiety attack, triggered by the unwelcome sight of a crushed car.