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The Pros and Cons of “I don’t know”

25 Jan

Is this my new normal?

I’ve been really down these last few days, and I’ve been trying to figure out why. I’m sure increased zoloft has something to do with it, as well as things I’ve mentioned in my last few blog posts, but there’s more to it than that.

I may be revealing a bit too much of my crazy here – but sometimes I look around and say to myself: You are 30 years old. You have been married to Shmerson for 7 months. You’ve had 2 miscarriages. Your name is…

Seriously, it gets down to me telling myself my name. Then I have an anxiety attack.

I’m happily married, healthy (relatively), financially ok (again, relatively – could be better), I have wonderful friends, and I love my family.

And yet, when I lay these facts out in front of me I feel scared.

I’ve been trying to remember whether this kind of stuff happened before I started the pills. It did. It happens less often now. But I think it happens for the same reasons.

These last few days I’ve been freaking out, because of the career stuff I’ve been trying to get moving. I keep on getting asked “where do you see yourself in 5 years?”

I keep on making up bullshit answers. In my head I keep on saying “I don’t know.”

You guys have to understand – that is not normal for me.

At age 12 I declared loudly that I want to be a director. I had my life planned out down to the smallest detail. I had an oscar speech memorized. I was set.

Then I woke up one morning in October of 2010, in the middle of losing a second baby, and I looked around and didn’t understand how the hell I got here.

Up until 3 months ago, I never took more than 24 hours to make any big life decision. Can you imagine that? I always KNEW. It was always solid. I was always sure. `Move across the ocean? Sure! Drown yourself in debt for grad school? Easy! Move back across the ocean? OK!

Now I can’t go to a restaurant without spending 15 minutes debating whether I want fries or mashed potatoes.

My initial theory of course is that this is a healthier way of being. “Knowing” led me to a state of stagnation, because I couldn’t reconcile my “grand plan” with real life.

But my god – this is freaking me the hell out.

I used to manage my anxiety by planning. By KNOWING. And now, I don’t know.

I don’t fucking know.

I can’t see farther ahead than a few months, a year at most. and that freaks me the hell out.

and even that’s unclear. I can get pregnant easy enough – so let’s assume shmerson and I start TTC in March. I will, if past experience is any indication, have a BFP by april or may.

But then what? what if I miscarry early? What if something else goes wrong later in the pregnancy? What if something goes wrong with giving birth? What if I have a healthy child? How the heck am I going to support it if I don’t know what to do with my life?

I don’t fucking know.

Part of being depressed is a sense of hopelessness. I swing between that and hope on an hourly basis.

I now understand the importance and the consequences of my decisions. I understand that they can lead to me fucking bleeding in the bathroom losing a second baby, or collapsing screaming in the shower at 4 in the morning because I’m in the middle of an unbearable panic attack.

So I don’t decide.

I don’t fucking know.

And frankly, I don’t know which one is scarier.

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16 Responses to “The Pros and Cons of “I don’t know””

  1. Elphaba January 25, 2011 at 02:28 #

    Okay, please don’t take this the wrong way (you know I only say this out of concern), but do you really need the pills? I don’t have a lot of experience with depression, although I definitely suffered from it after my miscarriage, but is there some other way to work through all this? I’m no expert, but do pills just mask problems instead of helping solve them? I’m not trying to cause offense, I’m just wondering if there is another way.

    As far as another miscarriage… if you’re sure you’ll pregnant quickly again, then my advice would be wait until you think you can handle going through another one–just in case. For me, the thought of not trying started to outweigh the thought of another miscarriage and that’s why we started to try again.

    Hugs xxoo

    • mommyodyssey January 25, 2011 at 02:37 #

      Hey – thanks for the concern
      It was a long hard road to get to the pills. The answer is yes, I do need them, for now. I was very much against it for a long time, but what I was describing up in that post – collapsing screaming at 4am – that was my day to day. The pills have definitely made that stop. I’ve always had issues with depression and anxiety, but I think the second miscarriage brought on some form of PTSD, and I literally could no longer function. I was never a supporter of anti-depressants until I realized that it was either that or never leave the house again.
      I think that when it comes to TTC again, a pregnancy will always come with some anxiety, considering the past two experiences. One thing’s for sure – until I am ready to handle that we will not be trying again.
      Much love!

  2. slcurwin January 25, 2011 at 03:36 #

    I had depression/ anxiety issues as a teen and no matter what they put me on it never worked. My brother had the same issue and we actually learned to deal with our anxiety attacks the same way. I can’t remember how my brother had put it but essentially we just mentally accepted them and then removed them. It sounds weird and undoable, maybe we’re just bloody stuborn enough, i dont know, but that was the only thing that worked for us.

    I hope you find something that works for you.

    • mommyodyssey January 25, 2011 at 14:29 #

      Thanks sweetie. I dealt with them that way fairly easily until the last few months. Hopefully eventually I’ll be able to go back to that as well.

  3. Marie January 25, 2011 at 05:10 #

    I’ve been on pills and off pills, and I always think it’s kind of the same. So I might as well be off pills.

    If you really are suffering PTSD (which is my official diagnosis), it might help you to look into an EMDR therapist. Mine got me to the point where I can tell my story without even flinching, let alone having a full-blown panic attack. That said, I am still in therapy trying to work around the aftershocks. But it’s much better now.

    Also, it’s okay not to know. If you keep trying to plan your life, you’ll miss out on the life you’re actually in.

    • mommyodyssey January 25, 2011 at 14:30 #

      I’ve heard of EMDR – and it has done wonders for a friend of mine. I’m gonna give the pills a spin for the next few months (along with therapy, of course), and if I see it doesn’t work, I’ll probably go there next.

  4. Kristin January 25, 2011 at 07:04 #

    I fully understand and support the decision to go on meds. I went on anti-depressants during all my losses. However, with my knowledge of meds, it sounds like maybe Zoloft isn’t the one for you. The same meds don’t work for everyone. Maybe talk to your doc about trying a different one?

    As far as the miscarriages and the fear they induce, have you had any testing done? I know most docs don’t do the standard miscarriage bloodwork until after you’ve had three losses but maybe your doctor would be willing to run it for you. Also, many, many times you have multiple early losses, the underlying cause is luteal phase disorder. There are simple tests for this and very simple treatments. If you have any questions or want to pick my brain about it, shoot me an email. {{{Hugs}}}

    • mommyodyssey January 25, 2011 at 14:35 #

      Hey Kristin – as far as the zoloft goes, the doc wants me to give it a fair shake. before the dose increase it did show signs of working – but for me specifically, it took about four weeks. Then I hit a wall, and he upped the dosage (i was on half a pill a day, now I’m on one pill a day), which was the plan from the beginning. I’m about two weeks in to the higher dose, so hopefully things will even out by the time the four week mark hits. If not, then we’ll see what’s next.
      Regarding the M/C – I just started reading “Taking Charge of Your Fertility” – amazing book, BTW if you haven’t heard of it – and from what I can tell it could very well be a problem with my luteal phase. I’m gonna start charting temps this week so I can come into the gyno armed with info next time.
      Thanks for the support. Hugs right back at you!

      • slcurwin January 25, 2011 at 18:47 #

        I too am a big fan of this book. I need to get my own copy though b/c I had just borrowed my SIL’s copy when I was learning the how to’s of all this charting.

  5. bodegabliss January 25, 2011 at 07:41 #

    I’m having the very same fears right now. I think the fact that you are acknowledging your fears is a very good step. And I second what Elphaba said about the thought of not trying again starts to outweigh the fear of losing another pregnancy. The fear is still very much there, though, and I don’t think it will ever go away, but it gets to the point that you just have to leap. My therapist tells me to hold that fear and acknowledge it, then try and let it pass.

    I’m a big believer in medicine for anxiety and depression, but I have no personal experience with it myself. I do know that we you need to do what’s best for you. And no one else knows what that is but you.

    I hope you can breathe soon and decisions start to show themselves to you.

  6. me0me January 25, 2011 at 22:54 #

    Man do I sympathize. It’s like after years of making choices in which you have conviction without really comprehending the profundity of their effect, now that you know what decisions mean it’s just too scary to make them. A good friend of mine here told me a couple of months ago- think what you want to be doing every day in your life and go from there. I think that’s not a bad thought. And I mean- that should be the focus right now, right? What do you want to be doing, and what sorry-but-I-have-no-better-phrase-than baby steps can you take to start doing it. Not “in the grand scheme of things”. In the here and now. And you’ve been acquainting yourself well with the here and now through this blog I think.
    And I will say, having made that new decision lately and going with it and feeling good about it, that it doesn’t fix anything but just that- going forward with something. There’s still a lot of anxiety about life and other choices and the inability to control everything. I use online banking to feel control. And some people in my life give me power by their adhering to my thoughts and approving of them. But maybe this control thing is actually stress inducing all by itself! oyoyoy!
    Can’t create closure today methinks. But I send love. And the friends and Tori posts were spot on. I loved them.

  7. Hemlock January 26, 2011 at 02:46 #

    My husband’s going through this right now. He’s been on several anti-depressants across the last 2-3 years. He finally had to stop as they were just making the depression, anxiety, and narcissism worse. It got so bad that I actually thought he was manic depressive. He suffered severe insomnia to the point of getting a sleep study and they found that he was falling asleep but not reaching REM. Each of the meds he tried all appeared to work at first, and then within several weeks we began to see problems. It almost destroyed our relationship.

    He was forced to take short term disability and get some time off from work. He’s now been off of his meds for about two months, and he’s a completely different person. He’s tasked me with helping to monitor his moods, and we’ve put him on extra B vitamins.

    I know your doc wanted you to give the Zoloft a go, but it may just be making the anxiety worse (maybe drop down to your original dose?). When you research the side effects for a lot of anti-depressants most of them will say that they can make anxiety worse. This in turn, unfortunately, makes the depression worse, too.

    *hugs* Whatever you end up doing, though, we all support you!

    • mommyodyssey January 26, 2011 at 03:03 #

      thanks hemlock! I really sympathize with both you and your husband. My Hubby is completely crazy-free and I feel so guilty sometimes for what I put him through, though he takes it like a trooper. Pills definitely don’t work for everybody – but I have a guess as to why they didn’t work for your husband. I’m playing armchair doc here – but hear me out
      Earlier in the comments marie mentioned EMDR therapy – and I said that a friend of mine went through it with great success.
      What I know about it is basically what she told me – but in short, her anxiety was depriving her of rem sleep, therefore she didn’t dream. according to the theory – dreams are where we process our traumas and anxiety, and file them away in a different part of the brain (something like that anyway).
      From what I understand it’s a combo of talk therapy and inducing dreams to process trauma. (marie, please correct me if I got this wrong)
      I strongly believe that there is some clout behind this. This is also why I think the zoloft has a chance of working for me – for years I had dreamless sleep, and now I dream quite a bit.
      Anyway, if you haven’t looked into it for him already, perhaps you should?

      • Hemlock January 26, 2011 at 08:33 #

        Oooo… I’ll think I’ll start research! Thank you ladies!

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