I just came the closest I ever had to real stress. The other week, everyone on my floor got new desks, so it was an ideal opportunity to clean out the office. I must have thrown away twenty pounds of papers/old reports that I do not need anymore. Today, however, I couldn't find a pile of reports that really should not be discarded. They are a vital element in the upcoming months. Losing these would not only knock me down in front of my boss, but an entire panel of doctors and PhDs would delight in publicly scolding/eviscerating me for this error.
In any case, I located said papers about five minutes later, hiding amongst a pile of unread/unrelated articles. The Panic has passed.
This is my first experience with immediate panic. I've felt stress before, but it was always something more gradual, like an upcoming exam I hadn't prepared for. Or, as a more of-the-moment event, right before a piano competition. However, in both of these cases, I always pulled through and very rarely exhibited any outward sign of stress. People have told me that I'm the calmest person they know. I border on icy. It works for me.
How do people that are easily stressed out deal with life? If that five minutes of sheer terror was a constant theme in my life, I would shoot myself. It fucking sucks. If I don't feel it again for the next twenty years, it will still be too soon. How do people deal with that feeling all the fucking time?