Thursday, May 27, 2010

Depression Update

*Thank you to everyone and your kind comments and emails about dealing with a school-going spouse. I really appreciated it!

I started taking Zoloft in September. It made me numb. Numb to the spirit, to sex, to joy, to despair. The numbness to the despair was awesome. I was actually functional again! I didn't cry in the shower anymore! Much! But it was awful, too. Especially the intimacy part (sorry if that was TMI). So, back to the psychiatrist I did go. Now I'm on Wellbutrin as well as the Zoloft and it has helped. The only problem I'm seeing now is I tend to get a little too giddy.

The other thing I've noticed is that my writing has slowly gotten worse since I started taking it. My prose is getting lost in the lapses of memory, as well as in any attempt I make to string a sentence or two together.

All in all, I'm okay. But how do I feel about my medication?
I hate it.
I hate that I have to be taking medication. I hate that the one medication didn't just work the first time. I hate how I feel when I forget to take it. I hate how I feel when I do take it. I hate all of it. I wish I didn't have this problem. I wish it would just go away.

Depression is real, and I get it. Oh, how I get it. In truth, I prefer being on meds now rather than in the pit of despair then. I snap out of anger faster now. I get things done. I don't wallow like I used to. I cry for no reason less. But at the same time, medication feels fake. It feels like I'm putting a band-aid on it.

This is exactly what my awesome MIL told me would happen, too. She knows about this stuff (from experience) and she told me that in order to get healthy I need to do a few things:
1. Be on medication for a year or more to get everything working again.
2. Go to therapy in order to learn and practice skills that will help me cope with the stress-triggers that bring on the "episodes."
3. Reduce the stress-triggers!

I've done #1 and I've done #3. I haven't been able to go back to do #2, yet, but I'm trying another route right now until I can: Books. And friends. And the Gospel. Call me crazy (haha!), but reading books has helped. Reducing the stress has been fantastic. Planting my garden has been a dream come true (which wasn't in the list, but stay with me). Staying the course when it comes to the Gospel has blessed me beyond belief. My faith is stronger now than it ever has been, even though life is crazy. In fact, here's the cliche: I can't imagine my life without my faith. For some, that may sound trite. For others, offensive. For some, typical. But for me, it's truth.

Anyway, there you have it. My update. Or going-on-date. Or still-happening-but-not-as-bad-as-it-was-date. And by my standards, I guess I'm doing okay. In fact, one may say I'm actually happy.

Isn't that nuts?!


Jamie said...

Hey Cheryl,

Your blog is so interesting, you are so real on it. I particularly understand this post. I don't technically have depression, but plenty of stress triggers. It's tough having a spouse in school. I pray things get balanced out for you and that the new med combo brings you some relief~ Much Love, Jamie

TaLaisa said...

I could write a book, with my comments. So on the short I totally agree on many fronts. I'm still trying to figure it all out and I haven't got the magic answer.

In fact I cried yesterday for an hour, with very very good reason AND I realized it has been 2 weeks since I last cried (or maybe my memory is fading too) and it felt really good to cry. And have a reason. Sometimes the tears won't fall if I don't feel like I have a justifiable reason. Even if it means watching a sad movie.

so much for the short comment.

nweames said...

Medication is a double edge sword. I have yet to have one without the side effects, but it is better with than without. I think the fact you talk about it is also a help, I found once I started talking about it it got easier. I found I could help others, as I know you have done, and I found I wasn't alone, as I hope you have also found.

Like you, I hate this disease, Depression is a horrible disease. No outside evidence just inside, and until we start talking it just eats us up little by little. You are so strong to fight it with medication, talking, therapy and everything else you can find.

You will beat this, and you will come out stronger for it!

Amber said...

Yes. To all of the above. I can relate to it all. Meds were like that for me too- including the TMI. I'm glad that they are finding a combination that works for you. I remember my therapist telling me that that is very common- to have to adjust and change meds until you find what works for you. It does feel good to feel good- I don't know why it's so bothersome to have to take a pill to help us get there. Keep up the good work to be happy. :)

Michelle said...

Ah, mortality. It's such a messy ride.

If it's any consolation, I don't see the meds thing as fake. It's a fallacy to think that we don't or shouldn't need help along the way. Cuz, ya know, mortality is messy and all of that.

You're doing great. Keep it up.

Anonymous said...

Cheryl, Thank you for posting this.... You have inspired me to go and get help!!! More times then not I feel rage (for no reason) angry and sadness.... I am SICK of it. And I want me old self back, Where ever it may be... thank you for being open and REAL!
Jen Durst