From Panic Attack to Heart Attack

From Panic Attack to Heart Attack

On the day before the hearing, my client called to say that he was on the way to the hospital with chest pain and would be unable to appear in court. At the hospital, he was admitted with a heart attack.

I was representing the client at his arraignment on charges of drug possession, in the tribal court of a Native American reservation. Several days before the hearing, he had written to say that he did not want to appear, because he was afraid of going to jail. I did my best to reassure him that we would find a reasonable solution. But his anxiety only increased, and that evening he called and said that he was considering suicide as an alternative to jail. I tried to calm him, then I called social assistance.

Shortly thereafter, he had the heart attack.

In court the next day, I was able to negotiate a sentence without jail time. When he received the news, his condition rapidly improved and he was released from the hospital.

The situation turned out well for my client, and was deeply instructive. I realized how our fears over a perceived unwelcome future can lead to serious physical consequences. I also realized how anxious I habitually became before I had to appear in court, and how the anxiety caused me to be nauseous and short tempered with my husband and children. It showed me how I had been sabotaging myself.

This was before I found my spiritual path and began to experience the miracles that meditation and inner stillness could bring into my life. That long-ago courtroom experience brought me a step closer to the path that would offer me tools to meet my life’s lessons with grace and acceptance, and to control my thoughts and emotions so that they might bring only positive results.
Ryanna, from a Native American Indian Reservation

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