Sunday, November 13, 2005

When the day is long, and the night is yours alone

About two months ago I landed in a spot I knew was coming ... a doctor put me on an anti-depressant. Long story short - I have battled depression and anxiety for almost eight years (okay - the anxiety has gone on longer than that, but you get the idea). While some of my problems diminished a little, the big gray fog was still there. So, my "regular" doctor decided to refer me on .... to a "professional in the field." Since I've stopped that med, things have actually worsened. This is a good move for me.

BUT ...

Why am I having such a hard time saying out loud that I'll be having a psychiatric evaluation on Thursday? If you were to write to me, and tell me your life story, but it was actually MY life story, I would say, "Oh my! Get help! It's okay, and you need it!" I would go with you to your "professional in the field," if you were nervous. I would encourage you, support your plan of action and do everything in my power to remind you of God's blessing of medication He has provided us since the beginning of time.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. But this time it is ME!

I don't even struggle with the whole "Can't Christians just have enough faith to conquer all things?" argument. God created St. John's Wort, for Pete's sake! We have broken bodies, and He provides aid for many of our ails.

I am just struggling with it being ME ... ME, ME, ME!

I'll be fine. I know I have to go through the process of denial (did that - see the above reference to "almost eight years"), then get on to acceptance. I plan to have a balance of treatment while working TOWARD acceptance (I'm a woman, therefore I multi-task).

For the past week I've forced myself to talk openly about my years of embarrassing phobias and how the depression has loomed. It is therapeutic, even when people look at me with shock or pity. I guess I just feel the need to embrace it, and put a face to it.

Still ... I'm hating it.

Oh, and P.S. -

If you plan to comment with something along the lines of "Just pray more" or "If you would just study more and have faith" ... well, I have ways of finding you and I WILL hunt you down and punch you right in the face.

Hugs!

18 comments:

Ellen said...

For shame! You just aren't reading your King James Version of the Bible enough. I bet you are reading the NIV. That is the real problem.

You, of course, know that I'm kidding.

What I really wanted to say is that I, for one, am very very proud of you! I had a hard time the first time I went to the head doctor (for depression, in high school.) Part of the problem was that my mother was so embarrassed and wouldn't tell anyone where I was going every Thursday afternoon. It takes guts to admit that you need some guidance. Go, you!

Biotress said...

A lot of people probably feel the same way you do!

K&M said...

I am in the same boat. Thank goodness for the meds! God provided us with doctors and drugs, and I plan on using both. Well, the legal drugs anyway. ;o)

Kate

Sharon said...

You sound courageous to me! :)

Christy said...

I'm a firm believer in "God helps those who help themselves."

I've struggled with anxiety and depression for years and have been on meds for three years and in therapy off and on over those three years.

Prayer can take the edge off but when there's actually a chemical or psychological issue, professional help in the field is good, Tom Cruise be damned.

Girl in Progress said...

I hope the medication helps to life the fog.. I think most of us can be in denial when it comes to US. I look back and can see when I've been in depressions and not even seen it at the time.. it's a shame.

I have a friend, a geologist with a PH.D. She was an atheist and became born again a few years ago. She's ALWAYS struggled with depression. Sadly, it got so bad last year she had some sort of elecrtric treatments. It only helped for a bit and most recently she's struggled with sucidal thoughts.. and then tried to commit sucide. It's beyond anything torture I can imagine, and I just don't see why she has to go through this..

Running2Ks said...

I see it the same as any other physical issue. Broken leg, get a cast and some physical therapy. Something chemically off in the head, get some medicine and some talking therapy.

But I do know the stigmas that society says, and those are rough to get by. I hope you get relief soon.

Sharon said...

Tom Cruise be damned...Lol!
AMEN TO THAT!!!

Happy Mom Tonja said...

Are you still lactating? You have to be very careful if you are and are using antidepressants. I know doctors will say it's ok, but use your good judgement. It can't be ok. I have suffered from anxiety for 14 yrs. 2 yrs ago I decided to go on something. I went on zoloft. Yes, life was better, but in the 18 mos I was on it, I gained 30 pounds and it won't come off. There are many many side effects to these medications so please be careful. I went off zoloft in March and I will never go on anything again. I found a GREAT all natural spray for panic/anxiety attacks and IT WORKS! It's called Rescue Remedy. Try it. I am also trying to find a natural alternative to zoloft. Still searching...
And as a preacher's daughter who was brought up to think that there IS shame in admitting things like this, LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING. I have NEVER been closer to God than I was in the 18 mos I was on zoloft. It's amazing what can happen when you're thinking clearly, not depressed and not worrying about anxiety all the time. I sincerely wish you the best of luck and if you need meds, you need meds. I just wish someone would have told me about the weight gain. I'm little and weighed 105 and wore size 5...now I'm 130 (did lose 5 pounds) and wear a size 13. People say they really can't notice, but I KNOW. And that is depressing!! LOL
Big hugs to you.

Christine said...

FYI for my lactivist buddies:

I've weaned from my induced lactation so that I can start a new med without any worries. Since I've induced twice in the past, I know I'll be able to again in the future if I become med free.

Thanks so much for your care. My concerns over side effects is one of the reasons I've delayed these past six months even though things have declined! I was once 80 lbs heavier than I am now, so the weight gain has been one of the things that concerns me. I'm sure I'll be updating ... particularly if my butt widens! :)

SNM said...

Therapy saved my life, and pulled me back from a very dark brink, and there is absolutely no shame in asking for help when you need it--and not just help from your friends, or your partner, or God, but help from another person who has actually studied and trained to learn how best to *help* you (and I'm not referring to a doctor who will prescribe meds, here, but to an actual therapist, who will sit with you through your pain and listen when you cry and help you recognize all of the repeating patterns in your life that you are not even aware of, but are capable of changing once you see them). Meds are an excellent short term solution that allows the symptoms and darkness to recede enough for you to actually do this amazing work on yourself, but the real change comes from the work, not the meds themselves. It's very difficult work--maybe the hardest kind of work there is--but it's well worth it. Recognizing and asking for help is always the first step, and it takes tons of courage and strength. Congratulations on taking that step. I wish you tons of luck. :-)

Manateechik said...

Fantastic for you! How great that you are doing this for yourself. I am bipolar (I have posted about it on my blog) and I understand this. It's wonderful to use all of the resources we are provided with, and I know that God very much supports that.

Molly said...

I think you're brave, and I hope you get the support you obviously deserve.

halloweenlover said...

I completely understand how unbelievably hard it can be to admit that something is wrong. I struggle with "how wrong does it have to be before you ask for help?"

I am so happy for this step for you. Happiness is so important.

Jenn said...

You'll get no lecture from me! I'm glad you are getting the help you need and I think you are really courageous to share your struggles with us.

Becky said...

I think it's a great thing that you are finally taking your own advice. You sound like me! I'm a great one for telling people to seek treatment. Have I ever done it for myself (God knows I need it)? Nope. I just keep telling myself that I am getting by ok. I self medicate with lots of food and blogging about my past. ;-)

Rose said...

You are courageous and I support you. I am a "fellow-sufferer" of panic disorder and depression and a book I found that can be helpful is "Blue Genes" by Dr. Paul Maieralthough I don't know if you like reading.

Ursula said...

Ugh, been there, done that, doing it again! Hope you got it figured out so you can live again, that's the hardest part for me, just feeling so stuck in it.