Sunday, September 30, 2007

I Get Knocked Down

But, just like the winner of the incredible Middleweight Championship boxing match I watched last night, I get up again. I know, I know, some people are anti-boxing, but I love to watch it.

Last weekend, the world seemed very bleak to me. A friend I care a great deal about had a birthday party and I could barely stay there even though the company, the food and the atmosphere was great! I was very sad and even more tired and achy and I was growing impatient with the waiting for the anti-depressants my doctor prescribed to work.

I will give depression one thing....he's got a powerful right hook, that's for sure.

A few days, though, made a huge difference. After being at the optimum target dose on the anti-depressant for one week, I woke up Wednesday morning actually feeling less like The Schlock Chick and much more like The Rock Chick.

I feel as though I can breathe and think again and going about my daily routines since Wednesday has been much easier than it has for the past few months. I’m sure I'm not all the way back, but I can definitely see a huge improvement.

I also realize that I’m very fortunate that the first anti-depressant I tried seems to be working with very minimal side effects. I think someone from above might have been watching over me with that one because true to my usual self, I had waited far too long to ask for help.

If you are reading this and feeling like this, please don’t wait like I did.

The websites say that depression will affect close to 20% of people at some time in their lives. That’s a lot of people and there is no shame in admitting that you have some type of problem, mental or physical. I think the number is way higher than that, too.

Your brain is part of your body, just like your heart, liver or kidneys. If you had a problem with one of those things, you’d go to the doctor and get treated. You would tell your friends and family and they would want to help you out anyway they could.

Guess what? It’s high time the ridiculous stigmas and stereotypes associated with these types of things finally get knocked down and flat out just don’t get up again.

It's time for a rematch. In this corner wearing Catboots and a lime green belly dancing outfit, weighing in at none of your business, it's Jessicaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa The Rock Chick.

Bring it on! This time it won't be me hitting the floor.

Just remember.. there are some really awesome people out there who have issues just like I do. I know, because I’m one of them.


JAM said...

Good for you. I sure hope it keeps working for you.

The one I'm on now, Lexapro, was helpful from literally the second day I took it. The previous one, Effexor, had me totally in zombie mode. I feel as if I lost several months early this year to Effexor. If not for the photographs I took during that time and saved in monthly labeled files, I would probably have zero memories of that time.

Like my doctor told me, there are lots of new and better medicines out there now. Having patience and the guts to keep getting back up will eventually see you to a level life.

I knew I had to get off of Effexor when earlier this year I went to a Saturday morning men's breakfast at our church. I sat there watching all of these happy people who I have so much in common with and I felt like the ultimate outsider. I felt like you at your party, fun going on all around and I knew I should be in the mix, but couldn't find my way there.

I finally got up during a lull while a few of the guys went to get something, and I slipped out the door and went home and went back to bed. I called my doctor for an appointment two days later on Monday.

Anyway, you aren't alone. Hang in there!

The Rock Chick said...

JAM: Thank you. I'm still feeling much more positive and stronger every day. Yes, there's small setbacks here and there, but I can definitely say it's a lot better!! Thank you so much for all of your kind words and support. I really appreciate it.


mom huebert said...

I've been thinking about this post for two days, because I realized that's how I've been feeling. I know I've struggled with bouts of depression, but reading what you wrote I suddenly saw that it's been getting worse for a long time and I hadn't noticed! I just knew that life seems to have lost its zest and, like you, I'd find myself hardly able to stand being in a group of people-- even people I wanted to be with. And the tiredness and achiness! I didn't know achiness went with depression. Is THAT my problem? Tell me some more....

The Rock Chick said...

Hi Mom Huebert-

You know, I hesitated writing about this at all and now I am very glad that I did.

From what I understand, aches and pains without any cause is one of the symptoms of depression. I didn't know that until my doctor told me.

I noticed some things early on, like I was wanting to sleep more than usual, but for the most part, I just kind of felt "blah" for quite a while. Several months, I'd say. Honestly, I really thought it was the hormone replacement therapy I was taking. The things I normally really enjoyed doing now seemed like they took too much effort and I'm normally pretty chatty but I'd get with a group of people and just couldn't even think of anything to say. Even if I wasn't feeling physically tired, I was just mentally tired, if that makes sense.

Then it accelerated, though and I found myself just suddenly bursting into tears and feeling kind of achy. I also started to find that it was a tremendous effort just to get through the day. Then one weekend a few weeks ago, I just became so sad, I couldn't even move. It was terrible and that's when I started the anti-depressants.

I would definitely talk to your doctor and see what he/she thinks. Mine prescribed Cymbalta for me and while I didn't start taking the full recommended dose right away---I worked my way up there starting with smaller doses for several days and then increasing the dose until I reached the full dose---once I did reach that full dose, the achiness seemed to just vanish.

After about 5 weeks, I am really feeling more like my old self. Not entirely, but it is so much better certainly than that one weekend and much more than the last several months.

Hope this helped! Jessica

mom huebert said...

My goodness-- yes, yes, yes. That sounds like me. Thanks so much for the information. I'm not sure what I'll do now, but I feel better just knowing I'm not imagining things.

The Rock Chick said...

mom: no you're not imagining things. I thought I was imagining some of it, too....

Crystal said...

I'm glad you're feeling more like yourself! I hope it continues to improve.