Living In The Present: My Journey Through Anxiety To A Place Of Rest

On July 18,2016 my life changed forever. It was almost exactly a month after my 36th birthday and I found myself in my doctor’s office complaining of a lump on the right side of my breast. I’m nervous, but that’s to be expected right? So my doctor asks me lie back and he began the exam. He didn’t really think there was anything to be concerned about, but just to be sure he wanted me to go and get a mammogram and breast ultrasound. My nervousness at that point went from a 10 to about a 20 because of all of the generations of horror stories I’ve heard about mammograms.

I arrived at the women’s health center for my screening and as I’m undressing I’m trying to quiet the inner workings of my mind of anticipating the worst. They call me back for my first screening and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I mean it wasn’t great, but not horrible. They decided that they needed more information because of how young I am and the density of the tissue so I got the ultrasound. That’s when this not so great experience turned into a nightmare.

After the ultrasound was complete the radiologist wanted to see me. I thought, “Oh my God, why?” It turned out that I had a growth that he suspected was cancerous and that I needed to get a biopsy for further evaluation. My heart dropped, and I went completely numb. All of the sudden life just got real. I couldn’t help but think of my husband, my kids, all of my dreams, plans etc. I was a wreck.

The next day I was back at the women’s center getting prepped for my procedure. Nurse and husband by my side every step of the way. It was a pretty short procedure, but the waiting afterwards for the results was the worst. In fact, I had a few sleepless nights and then a couple of days later my phone rang. It was the doctor’s office. The nurse belted out the words, “you are fine”, “there’s no cancer, just a small fibroadnoma.” I tried to keep myself together until I hung up the phone, but best believe I laughed, cried, hugged my husband, and praised the Almighty God for being faithful yet again.

Over the next couple of months I had some other “little” health challenges come up, but I made very good changes to my lifestyle. I started drinking a ton of water, I decaffeinated almost completely, using essential oils, and I started using a natural deodorant. So certainly I thought I was in the clear.

Well, I thought wrong. Amongst the other challenges that came up was my anxiety. I have always been a little high strung, bad PMS, overly concerned with the future, but didn’t really know what anxiety disorder was let alone a panic attack. Until one morning out of the blue, even now when I think about it I wasn’t nervous about anything in particular,I woke up shaking. It was the kind of shaking that I could feel, but no one else could. Months earlier I had experienced a panic attack, but didn’t know that was what it was at the time.

As the week went on, the shaking never stopped, it became a distraction so much so that I started googling. Trust me, worst decision ever. Let google diagnose you and you’ll have everything known to man. I mean, I thought I had MS and everything under the sun. Ultimately it got worse…

Please tune in tomorrow for pt2. of my story and journey through anxiety.

Thank you for reading a please follow me on Instagram and Twitter.

Achea Redd

Achea Redd

about the author

Achea Redd is a mental health advocate, author of “Be Free Be You” and founder of Real Girls F.A.R.T. — a space to empower and equip women with the necessary tools to use their voices and become their best, most authentic selves.


  1. AvatarMarlana says

    Wow! I totally understand where you’re coming from, thanks for being upfront and honest about your experience. I’ve had a similar experiences when it came to my breast health , but God is good!!!

  2. AvatarJanetta L. Pickens says

    Thank you for sharing your experience and your transparency. This gives me ask me insight as to why my daughter is always overly concerned about the future at 9 years old? I had a sabacious (non cancerous) cyst removed from my breast several years ago. God is faithful and I praise God for your victory in every area of your life in Jesus name!

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