Tag Archives: panic

“My house,” she said. “It’s all I got.”

Compassionate Love Blog: Displaying compassion for those who fight mental illness, addiction, and abuse  (c)2018  Nancy Virden, Always the Fight Ministries

pXewBwOA woman who stayed with her home during one of the devastating wildfires in California, surprised her friends and neighbors by her survival. When asked why she stayed behind instead of evacuating, she replied, “My house. It’s all I got.”

Occasionally, any of us may feel as if what we value is slipping away. Efforts to prevent loss demand our attention. In a similar way, when we suffer a severe episode of any  mental health challenge such as major depression, anxiety, or panic attacks, among others, we may fall in to a place of desperation.

Rationally,  it doesn’t make sense to give up one’s life for a house.  Still, the woman who risked her life is not alone. A year ago, during a massive hurricane, one interviewed citizen was choosing to stay behind to take care of someone else’s possessions! The end of that story is unknown. 

I do not think either of these people were calm and collected. Not knowing them, it seems they did what anyone would do who valued something or someone above themselves. Whether desperation lasts one minute or months, temporarily it is difficult to make well-reasoned choices based on what is true. Instead, our minds tell us our perceptions of danger, loss, or hopelessness are the sum of reality.

In those moments, what we value most will rise to the surface. For me, major depression  (later) exposed the fact that I treasured the evasive love of my husband more than life itself. This had to change, and it was hard work. Transferring my hope to a permanent foundation has changed everything in my life. 

God used several tools to open my heart to his unfailing love. Some of it was therapy, and a renewing of my thought processes. Some of it was scripture (I view the Holy Bible as his unerring Word to us). Some of it was prayer. The end result is a whole person, a woman who values and relies on his love. 

I no longer need a person or material possessions to define my worth. Having never been in a natural disaster, I believe now it would be a no-brainer to leave everything behind. Reality is, God loves me. He sent his Son Jesus to die and resurrect so I could be with him forever. My hope lies there – in the unchanging, unending love of God the Father.


Today’s Helpful Word

Matthew 6:19-21  

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”


NOTE:  I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental and behavioral health challenges.  In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.

If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.

If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S.  (for international emergency numbers, go here ), or go to your nearest emergency room. Do not be alone. Hope and help are yours.


*house fire pic by XYMONAU ; streams of light by MICROMOTH: both  on rgbstock.com


62 Plus 1 Reasons to Overcome Fear

Compassionate Love Blog: Displaying compassion for those who struggle with mental illness   (c)2016  Nancy Virden, Always the Fight Ministry


This afternoon, dozens of birds landed in my city-size backyard. They were different types; I saw a bluejay, robins, a downy woodpecker, sparrows, brown thrashers, what I think was a brown-headed cowbird, and grackles. My yard must be a buffet of worms and bugs following yesterday’s rain. They also seemed to enjoy the berry bush, especially the robins, who lingered long after the party was over, cautiously dangling from its flimsy branches.

The 62

I stopped counting at sixty-two. They were jittery. One wrong sound and they scattered as a mass in every direction. There was no actual danger, just what seemed a birdie panic following one bird’s flighty reaction to fear.

Fear weakens us. It may on the outside be covered up with pride, bravado, or confidence. Life seems manageable. We can often live in relative strength, not understanding how deeply fear affects us.

Then someone nearby says the sky is falling, and we flee, emotionally, physically, financially, and spiritually along with the panicking crowd. What we thought were our values fall by the wayside in the pursuit of survival. We leave loved ones behind for the sake of escape. Escape!

Society-at-large is pandering to fear right now. Some are screaming for laws and regulations to protect us. Others are shouting for politicians to step up to the plate. A few loud mouths resort to bullying as they promote themselves as ultimate power. The world is noisy. Some men, women, and children hide.

Fight or Flight is a human response to fear. (And sometime Freeze). Fear weakens us. Look around and watch how susceptible we are to following what is popular or loudest. In a moment of panic we may just follow the crowd off a cliff.

And the 1?

After the birds’ great exodus, one young deer ventured into the yard. It saw the berry bush close to the house and dove into red, lush pleasures. Branch after branch, the reckless deer munched, oblivious to how far he had wandered from the safety of the woods.

It too was jittery, and now and then the deer’s whole body shook. Instinctively, it knows the answer to danger is to run. I have no idea what it heard, thought it saw, or smelled that caused those legs to jump, change direction mid-air, and sprint so fast from the berry bush. It’s too bad, because no one would hurt the deer in my backyard. Everything inside his being told him to flee.

He missed out on a great dinner with seconds and dessert. How many times fear interrupts our joy, too! We love only to a point, receive love cautiously, trust at arms’ length, and believe we are always in danger of a broken heart. So we run before we can experience the best parts of life.

62 plus 1 reasons to challenge and overcome our fears. Look around and inside yourself. Observe. Ask God to show you what are your fears and the way out of them. You can know inner solidity and deep peace.

1muxnjToday’s Helpful Word

Isaiah 41:10 NKJV

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”



NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental illness. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental health care.

If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Hope and help is yours.