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- Lucy Villa-Carranco
“I first came to Healing Hands because my aunt was coming here and she liked how they were treating her and the whole process of everything. At the time I was having terrible anxiety attacks and I wouldn’t know what was happening. I thought I was having a heart attack or something. So, my family kept calling the ambulance and I would go to other centers that didn’t really help me. They didn’t really know what was going on.
“My anxiety became a problem because I was married and my husband passed away. Two years ago, he was murdered and I never really opened up to anybody about this. I didn’t talk to my family. I didn’t talk to my friends. I didn’t talk to anybody. He passed away January 17, 2012 and I am just now starting to get help and feel better.
“Before, I didn’t deal with it, I closed up. I kept ignoring it and that is why I would get the attacks. I couldn’t do anything and I really felt like I was going to die. I’ve never felt like that, ever. It was so scary. I couldn’t breathe. I didn’t have the ability to at all. My face would get numb as well as different places of my body. I really felt like I was dying, honestly.
“When I first came here I knew right away there was something different about this place versus the other places I had been. They started treating me, and it really started helping. My relationship with Physicians Assistant Victoria Chang-Mishra changed me. She actually talked to me and told me to get a better relationship with God. I haven’t ever had anyone tell me that.
“It wasn’t until I came to Healing Hands that they diagnosed me and told me I was having anxiety attacks. That’s when I finally started medication. Victoria gave me medication for depression and for anxiety. It has been a complete 180 since I started coming here and I haven’t had an attack in weeks.
“Victoria also taught me how to control my attacks, too. That was huge. She taught me how to do breathing exercises, to breathe in and count to four and then let it go for eight seconds. She told me to try yoga and to run in the mornings. She helped me a lot. Now I can feel an attack coming on, I can control it. I don’t even use my medication anymore. I don’t need it. Before I used to feel really, really weak and I feel stronger now. I feel better.
“I want people who don’t know about this clinic to know that I really enjoy how the staff at Healing Hands talks to me, and that we pray. I love that. This place has a relationship with God. It helps so much. I never had that before. It surprised me that a someone I barely knew would do that with me. It made me feel much better.
“My family and friends can see a difference in me. I wanted a change; I wanted to feel better. I am ready to be normal again. Now I am in control, I know what’s going on and I know I can handle it.
“I still take the depression medications, but not the anxiety ones. I don’t need them anymore. It only took me one month to not need them anymore. I am also taking a lower dosage of the depression medication.
“If I had never come to Healing Hands, it would have only gotten worse. I don’t even know what I would be doing right now, honestly. I could have died. I know, now, that I am a strong person and I can do many different things.”
Lucy is now attending a church and support group regularly. She and her daughter, Melody, have taken up hobbies such as walking and playing in the park.