“The spiraling, worry, and fears became more intense as the years went on. It was hard to get out of bed and go to work every day. To figure out if I was being a good mom and person in society. I lost loved ones unexpectedly which sent me into a whirlwind. I had toxic relationships that served me no purpose. I lost myself and yet I somehow muddled through the next 10 years continuously shoving down emotions and not feeling a thing.
I eventually gave in and tried medication after my 2nd child. I always knew medication was not something I wanted to rely on, but I also was looking for a quick fix. In my head, it was “I need something now, I’m a mom and I work full time I don’t have time to be this anxious.” Well, it didn’t work out like that. I gave up on meds just as quickly as I tried them. I wanted to fix myself. I wanted to be proud of pulling myself out of a dark space. I wanted to save myself. I tried exercising, eating better, having a routine, talk therapy, online therapy, you name it, I tried it. Never got very far. Always the same cycle. Felt good or better for a few days and spiraled right back into my anxious thoughts and emotions.
Fast forward to seeing all this hype about something called LENS. I looked into it for about a year before I made any moves. Funny how anxiety works, I wanted such a fast and drastic change, but it always held me back. I finally made the call and was put on a waiting list. I think I called Cassie every week for 4 months to see if it was my turn yet. I finally got the phone call to schedule my first appointment. I was excited, but so nervous. I wasn’t sure if this was going to be the one thing they changed everything for me or if was it going to be another bust on my end. I walked into my first appointment in the most anxious state. I explained what I had been through in a brief conversation, and Cassie went to work on me. When she handed me my first map, she looked right at me and said “Allie, I don’t know how you’re doing it every day. I don’t know how you’re living because your brain is just in flight or fight mode, it’s all shut down and just making sure you get by, but like just barely getting by.” I started sobbing. I always knew I wasn’t crazy, but I just never felt “right” either.
She gave me hope. I knew I had to put the work in, but I wasn’t sure I could do it. She eased my mind and reassured me that she was going to be right by my side to push me along. I went weekly for 14 weeks straight. Plenty of times when I had days that I thought I couldn’t do it. I was like nothing is working, I feel awful, and I cried every day. One day I left work and told Jordan I was going to drive my vehicle off the bridge on the way home. He was to kiss and hold my kids and take care of them for me. He responded so sternly but so ready to help me. He said “absolutely not I am staying on the phone with you until you get home”. I went to see Cassie the next day and I told her it wasn’t working I wanted to quit and maybe nothing will ever help me. She came right over in front of me and was level with my face and said “Do you want to help yourself and work through all of this trauma or do you wanna give up just because it wasn’t an overnight fix for you.” She had yet again continued to save my life. Day in and day out. That was my breaking point. Right then and there I had to allow myself to dig deep and come out on the other side. I put in that work. I was so determined to change and feel better.
Two appointments later and I was flourishing. I was then pushed to biweekly appointments and then in a blink of an eye I was monthly. I was speechless. I couldn’t believe the work I put in, I couldn’t believe the person I was becoming, how I felt, what happiness actually felt like, how enjoying life was something I looked forward to, how going to the store alone that I no longer would shake, or the less I worried over bodies of water, or the fear of leaving my house and not being safe. Other people started to see the glow in me. Cassie believed in me and made me believe in myself.
Today, I am 25 sessions in and I go biweekly because of my seasonal anxiety and depression. However, that doesn’t mean I’ve gone backwards. It simply means that I am now so in tune with my own body that I know when I need a little extra oomph. I know that I am ‘feeling to healing.’ I know I’m on the right path to my story. If you asked me 25 appointments ago if I would feel the way I do or be the way I am I would’ve laughed in your face. I am a happier person, mom and wife. I truly don’t know where I would be today without her and LENS. She is heaven sent and I will forever be grateful for her and the relationship we have made thus far. Thank you Cassie from the bottom of my heart. Your witchcraft and that heart of gold you have, have saved me and continue to save me.”
– Allie Hamilton