I can totally relate to this. Anxiety from my MAV has totally changed my life. Like you I still deal with it daily.
On top if it, I work in a VERY high stress job for a very large Fortune 500 company, which just adds to the fun.
I’ve been dealing with Migraines for over 15 years, but, my MAV started in May 2011 and it triggered all sorts of panic and anxiety issues that I never experienced before. Because the MAV was triggering almost daily panic attacks, I tried a total of 5 medications for anxiety. One almost put me over the edge (Buspar) and one I got fairly addicted to (Ativan). I stopped all of those, and after several months of daily chest pains from the stress of vertigo combined with the stress of my job, I had a final “rock bottom” panic attack at work that caused me to go on medical for 5 months. During that time. I went through 1 month of anxiety therapy followed by 3 months of vestibular rehab, plus various medical tests throughout that period – all of which turned out fine, thankfully.
MAV has changed my life in many ways. I developed fears that I never would have dreamed of prior to it, many of which are quite crippling and extremely terrifying. I also came to realize that, oddly enough, the physical pain of the migraines which used to bring me to my knees years prior suddenly became secondary to all of these fears.
However, it also changed my outlook on life overall and appreciate it in ways I never could before. I also made some very positive lifestyle changes (stopped drinking, started eating much healthier).
Everyone is different, but I feel that the anxiety therapy saved my life – it forced me to deal with everything without medication. I had to go out into the world and face all of it’s ugly spinning and continue on as normal. It was miserable, terrifying, and very paralyzing. On the bright side, it got me into photography which has been a godsend through all of this.
I see a psychologist occasionally now and while it doesn’t magically cure anything, it certainly helps sort things out. Not everyone can go the non-med route (and I will never criticize anyone who benefits from them), but for me personally I believe that, some day, it will pay off.
But it’s a long road ahead…