Thursday, December 07, 2006

Weaning ... weaning ... safe and secure from all alarms

(Who "gets" the title of this post? It's a play on a song. What is it? What is it?? Who wins the prize?)

I'm still weaning off the Cymbalta (or as I now like to call it: Anti-Christ-in-a-capsule). Once you hit the one-pill-a-day mark, you can go cold turkey (which will make your life a living hell full of dizziness, nausea and continuous brain shocks - I tried that first - what a party!). OR, you can slow down the withdrawal process and start counting beads.

That's right, boys and girls. I have to break open those suckers and count out beads into baggies. I then go in each morning, lick my finger to pick them up out of said baggie, and gulp them down. By the way ... tiny beads and static electricity = cranky, cranky Christine.

I'm currently at 75 beads a day. When my baggies run out this week, I'll have another hour at the dining room table, popping open the capsules and breaking them down into incriments of 50 .. with a toothpick ... again, "static electricity = cranky, cranky Christine." The dream side effect issues I've been dealing with are slowly starting to change. I'm super happy about that.

I have completely changed my mindset these days. I know that regular excercise and a healthy diet make a MAJOR impact on depression and anxiety. So, instead of saying I'm going to "try" to do those things ... I'm literally making them my new prescription. My pills weren't a choice. So, now my physical activity and eating habits are not a choice. It's not a choice. It's not a choice. My body needs it, and when I give my body what it needs I'm also giving my family what they need - the Christine I'm meant to be!

Oh, but did I mention that it bites? I realize I'm funny and clever. However, I hope I don't ever make it sound easy. It's not. It's so hard ... especially the "eating healthy" part. IT'S SO HARD!!!!! I struggle every single day. Don't buy into the fact that you'll lose your weight and feel so great about yourself that all of your other baggage will magically disappear and you'll never want a brownie again. That's a bunch of hooey. It's a discipline. I cry sometimes ... other times I pace ... beat my head against the wall ... whatever gets me through it! :)

I just have to wake up and choose again. It's a choice, every day. It's a choice. I can't base it on feelings or emotions ... or I'd be 200 lbs again with cholesterol through the roof. I would be relying on food to fill my voids ... again. I have to choose.


Anonymous said...

"Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms!"

Anonymous said...

I don't envy you one bit for weaning yourself from the Cymbalta. I can't imagine how difficult that must be. I, too, am in the middle of revamping my exercise regimen and food choices and--you're right!--it's SO HARD! Especially with Christmas right around the corner and the parties and the food. Oh, I dread it!

Anonymous said...

I don't know your reason for weaning. However, the most common reason why people go back to being depressed is because they went off their medicine.

They finally started to feel better and decided they didn't need it anymore and can control their body on their own and then go off their meds and slip back into depression.

Depression isn't your fault and is a chemical imbalance in your brain. You may want to talk to your doctor before weaning. I know you weren't asking opinions and I apologize if I have gone too far by putting mine in your comments. Hugs to you.

Unknown said...

Hey Wendy,

You must be fairly new to my brain! I have talked so much about depression and anxiety disorders on here, and I don't play around with them at all! I think my biggest soap box would be "anti-dep's are not happy pills nor are they candy!"

Your concern is very kind, though, as many people are treated for depression just through their primary care physician. They don't actually see specialists and are never educated on their condition. Many also stop cold turkey without understanding the consequences or without consulting their physicians. I had the best OBGYN in the world - he absolutely refused to write me more than one month's prescription - insisted that I see a psychiatrist. He was the BOMB!! Not everyone is like that, though. You're good to always help educate.

Personally, I don't want to see anyone getting a RX for an antidepressent unless they're under the care of a specialist of some sort. But alas ... no one listens to me!

You'll find Ellen's book on depression really amazing. Scroll down on the right. It's called, "Depression: A Primer." It's a free online thing, and you can send people the link. It's soooooooooo good and very interesting to boot!

Anonymous said...

Bless you, Christine.

Self-control is a gift of the Spirit, not a matter of willpower. It's not a native trait.

Anonymous said...

You bless me, girl. Thanks for the details of your walk...thanks for the hymn reference...and the Matt Redman closure...

...and thanks most of all for the inpsiration. A few posts ago you referenced the '30 minutes a day NO MATTER WHAT'. I was inspired; I started simply moving at home, every day. Then I got sick (a simple cold). Then I got a bit better, and I got back on the wagon. This week it's been 3 miles EVERY DAY. I feel like a superhero! Thanks for the push...

- and 'An Inconvenient Truth' is next on my netflix lineup. I never thought I'd see the day when I'd invite Al Gore into my house, but Jesus can make moderates of us all, can't He?

Anonymous said...

I am always inspired by your wise thoughts and commitment to God in every area of your life. If you can get off the anti-dep. and stay off, I say, "you rock". I have not been able to get off and stay off mine since I started 8 years ago. I always have a relapse when I have tried. And, weaning has been the WORST thing of all - I know all the symptoms you are talking about!

Unknown said...


I guess it's like everything else: we're all affected so differently. I certainly wouldn't try to get off if my doctor and I both agreed that mine is not severe enough to justify long-term use.

My daughter (who has Tourette's, OCD, depression and anxiety - she's 8!) is on an anti-d and will probably be on one for life. Her "stuff" in on an entirely different level than "my stuff." So, we have to approach hers differently.

I have picked up bits and pieces of the theory behind cognitive behavior therapy. It is VERY effective for me. We plan to have my daughter to see a CBT therapist in the next few years, as well, because she will start to be reaching a point where she may outgrow some/all of the Tourettes (meaning her medication levels can change). CBT is a GREAT thing to add for anyone that has depression or anxiety issues (whether or not you're on medication). Sorry for the sales pitch! ha!

Mary Beth said...

Not sure what happened, but those first two posts were me!

Summer said...

LOL It's been years since I set foot in a church and I not only recognized the song but I could sing it too. Why is it my brain can remembr things like the picture on a commercial for dishsoap from 10 years ago yet I can barely remember what I had for lunch.

Good luck with the weaning. Should I be scared tomorrow? Will I need protective gear? Just kidding!

ChrissyLou said...

Oh... Diet and Exercise is soooo true.... I took up running... and after about dying for a few days it got easier and totally does the job. Im in withdrawals now because of my healing from surgery... You have no idea how badly I need one.

But yes.. you are right on the mark here. ((HUG))