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Tag Archives: xanax

Sunday – The Day of the Doctors: Help me prep!

8 Apr

Ok, so here’s the deal: I’m a mess.

No, seriously. I’m a complete mess. The last week or so I’ve been detached, I’ve had middle-of-the-night anxiety attacks (something that hasn’t happened to me in months), and two uncontrollable crying fits in the last 48 hours.

Something’s up.

I mean – duh, of course something’s up. What I mean is, too much is up. I think my anti-depressants aren’t working. And I think it’s not a coincidence that I started having panic attacks as soon as AF showed up.

So I decided to make Sunday my Day of Doctors. I already mentioned making an appointment with Dr. Twofer. That’s happening at 6pm. At 3pm I have an appointment with my GP just to go over some blood tests and get my mega-vitamin-D prescription renewed. So – I decided to go all out and add Dr. Happy Pills to my appointment list at 11am that same day. I’m a woman on a mission. By the end of sunday, I want to know what the hell’s going on with my body. I don’t care if it’s me being control-freaky. It’s time.

And for that – I need your help!

I’m about to spew a very long list of concerns and problems I’ve been quietly not thinking about or talking about. Once I’m done with them, I want all of you guys to chime in – I want to hear your opinion. What tests and workups should I be asking for? What am I missing? Am I exaggerating with anything? Should I just shut up? Because I tried shutting up with Dr. Blunt, and with all due respect, it just made me sit around and wait to have another miscarriage. I really want to feel like I’m in control of my body.

So – this is something I don’t think I’ve actually done on this blog before, but without further ado – here’s my whole sordid history:

Age 17 – first bout of depression and anxiety – periods start to become irregular. Go on BCP. (I think these two may be connected. More on that later)

Age 22 – Diagnosed with PCOS – stay on low dose BCP. No other action taken. Anxiety and depression still come in bouts.

Age 27: Lose the pill. Meet Shmerson. Periods incredibly irregular. Use condoms as Birth Control. Anxiety and depression still there. Still (somewhat) under control.

Age 29 – present (halfway to 31):

Because of Jewish Laws and such, I needed to make sure that AF was done a few days before me and Shmerson’s wedding, so that I can go to the “Mikveh” and the wedding would be recognized by the rabbinical institute here (long, annoying patriarchal story).

Anyway, because AF wasn’t regular, and the wedding was coming up, I took provera for 3 days to jump start AF. It worked. Because AF was irregular leading up to the wedding, Shmerson and I had decided to TTC right away (as in during the honeymoon). I was completely clueless even about ovulation at that point. Turns out those rabbis know their stuff, because the way they time it, you ovulate right around your wedding day. Clever bastards. So (I assume) due to that AF jump start I ovulated on our honeymoon and tada! Baby made. Didn’t find out I was preggo until I was around 5 weeks because I was so used to AF not being regular. I POAS on a whim and got a BFP.

Betas were normal. First US at 5 weeks showed a small sac.

I go and get my genetics tested to make sure all is well. I get the all clear so shmerson is told he doesn’t need to test for hereditary diseases.

Second U/S was scheduled for 8 weeks. 4 days before that I started bleeding, diagnosed with a blighted ovum. I ended up getting a D&C on the day we were supposed to see a heartbeat.

Anxiety and depression get worse. I decide they will get better if I get preggo again (really smart of me).

Surprisingly, AF shows up exactly when it’s supposed to – 30 days after D&C. Positive OPK on CD20. BD from CD 15-CD 21. Faint BFP on CD 27.

Now this m’dears is when things get complicated. Here’s where I share some stuff I haven’t shared here before, probably because I was too scared to think about it, let alone write or talk about it. It’s only in the last few days that this whole affair has started to come into focus for me.

So – Faint BFP on CD 27. Time to get a blood test to confirm right? Wrong. A perfect storm was brewing. It was Rosh Hashana – which is Israel’s equivalent of everyone else’s “Holiday season”. Two weeks of EVERYTHING being closed. Between that and my total state of denial I kept on putting off the blood test. I figure I would just go “after the holidays”. Denial is a wonderful thing.

But I knew I was preggo. I kept on getting BFPs. I peed on many sticks during those two weeks. Another fun fact: My anxiety was through the roof. This is when I started waking up in the middle of the night with anxiety attacks (this was every night. and they were BAD).

So, holidays are wrapping up, and I start bleeding. I call my obgyn. He brings me in that same day. He does an U/S, and he doesn’t find a thing. No sac. Nada.

He actually believes I’m either not preggo or I got my math wrong. I assure him: Positive OPK on CD 20. I’m almost 6 weeks along. Trust me.

He tells me that I need to get my betas done so that he’ll know whether he needs to go looking for that fetus. (In other words, there’s a chance this may be ectopic).

So the next morning, I get my Betas. They’re in the high 900’s. Bleeding still going strong. OB says to wait 72 hours and get another beta. I can’t wait that long. 48 hours later I get a second beta. it’s 1200. Numbers aren’t doubling. I call the doctor. By the time he calls me back I’m already passing clots. I know it’s over.

I come in two days later, he sticks his magic wand in my hoo-ha and says that all is clear. I say ok. I’m destroyed.

I don’t think to ask why the hell he didn’t see a sac in the first place, and why he’s only looking at my uterus and not at my tubes. I don’t think I want to know. I don’t think about the fact that this could have been ectopic.

Anxiety and depression become unbearable. AF becomes a clockwork 29-30 day cycle (this is the first time since the age of 18 that this happens without the aid of pills). Ovulation happens always between CD 17 and CD 20 (usually closer to 20).

I break down emotionally in December and decide to go to a shrink as Shmerson and I pick up the pieces and decide it’s time to figure out what’s up.

In the meantime, I start having a slight sense of cramping on my right side during AF and up until ovulation. Then it goes away. This happens every month. I decided to ignore it (oh god please don’t let there be something wrong with my tubes. please don’t tell me my last pregnancy was an ectopic and this pain is because of that).

I go see Dr. Blunt. I don’t tell him about the pain because I’m stupid and I’m in denial. He sends me to do a clotting test. My MTFHR says I’m a Heterozygote. Dr. Blunt says that means that I’m fine and I don’t need anything. He suggests progesterone supplements after a BFP. I ask him to do a hormonal workup (all I’ve had checked is my thyroid) he says I don’t need it. I’m uneasy with this, but in the spirit of “letting go of control” I go along with it. And in that same spirit, he doesn’t give me an US or anything.

In the meantime, I go to my GP for a general blood workup- high blood pressure and a vitamin D deficiency, and also, elevated lymphocytes, which are basically antibodies. That usually happens right after a sickness, but for me I’ve always had it. Doctor wants to monitor lymphocytes. I have no idea why and whether that has anything to do with anything.  I start taking prescription dose vitamin D and decide to quit smoking because that will obviously help with the blood pressure thing. And yeah, I should really quit smoking because of all the other stuff too.

I quit smoking. Shmerson and I start TTC again. Ovulation not monitored but guessing it was on CD 17. AF starts on CD 30 and that freaking pain on my right side comes right along with it (worse than ever).

And on the night before AF starts,  I wake up with an anxiety attack. The first time that’s happened since I started meds. And then the next night it happens again.

And the last two days, I’m pretty much as much of a wreck as I was right after the second miscarriage.

I have realized that it was all nice and good while Shmerson and I weren’t TTC, but now that we are again, I need to take control of my care. I cannot wait around to have another M/C.

I also can’t spend another TWW like I did this one. I also cannot handle being back with all of that anxiety and non-functioning depression. So when I go to my day of doctors on Sunday (in case you’re curious, sunday is Israel’s monday), I want to come armed with everything I need to tell them, everything I want to ask, and a list of every test me (and possibly shmerson) need to take.

I’ve got a few guesses.

I think that maybe – just maybe my PCOS is causing a hormonal imbalance that has resulted in increased anxiety, and that the meds may be masking that.

I think my second pregnancy was an ectopic that cleared, though I have no proof of that except the beta numbers and that stupid nagging pain on my right side that was never there before.

I think that if I have another miscarriage I may go insane.

And now I need your help.

What do I say to Dr. Happy Pills? Should I stay on the anti-depressants if they’re not working for me? Should I just detox off of them and hope that balancing out my hormones will do the trick and take xanax until that happens?

What do I ask Dr. Twofer? The man’s a gyno and an endocrinologist, and I’m paying for a private consultation, that means, everything is on the table. Every test in the book. I just don’t want him to think I’m crazy. Am I imagining this ectopic? What affect would a prior ectopic have on TTC at this point?

Have at it ladies – I need all the help I can get. I need to come in armed with a plan and take control of this Biyatch.

So – theories, personal experiences, debunkings, lists of tests, screaming at me to shut up, lists of questions – all of it. Lay it on me.

Thanks!!

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What If

15 Mar

First – an update. The woman who I posted about yesterday gave birth to yet another healthy baby boy. I officially clicked “hide” today on her profile. Don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner. She has gone from “I’m not crazy about her” to “I hate that woman” in the course of 24 hours. Yay her.

Thanks for everyone’s lovely and supportive comments yesterday. They really did help.

But yesterday sucked – on a lot of levels.

However, today, some of the sources of that suckage were revealed with my monthly visit to Dr. Happy Pills.

Yeah – turns out my whole “let’s lose the patch” plan – well – not so much with the smart.

I had my first uncontrollable crying fit in months last night. And it was terrible because Shmerson is away at reserve duty and I was feeling particularly alone (luckily, Court was there to talk me down from having a cigarette and squish was there to talk me down in general). Today, when I entered Dr. Happy Pills’ office, exhausted and puffy eyed, he said: get yourself back on the patch. Now.

Then came the barrage of “me knowing betters” that included “but the nicotine is already out of my system!” And “I don’t want to get re-addicted!”.

His answer: Get the lower dosage patch but get yourself back on the freakin’ patch.

See- turns out those cigarettes were medicating my anxiety issues even more than I thought. Now that I’m clear headed (back on a lower dosage patch) all of the sudden, the last few days – the crying fits, the disconnection, the over eating, the not going to yoga, the not handling anything with even an iota of rationality – well, they’re all making much more sense.

Yeah – nicotine plays on the same exact places in the brain that happy pills do. This means I have to WEAN MYSELF OFF SLOWLY or go completely batshit – (see the last few days as an example of me going batshit. Though what you read on the blog was tame compared to what was raging in my head).

So – I am now back on a low dose patch. I will wean myself off of it slowly. I will listen to Dr. Happy Pills properly from now on. No more “me knowing better.”

(You’d think I’d have learned that lesson by now, wouldn’t you?)

The thing is, with the emotional rollercoaster of the last week or so, going from doing the happy dance to rock bottom in the course of hours, having a constant internal dialogue with myself about smoking versus non-smoking, a lot of fears have started to creep back in.

On a lot of levels today’s appt. with Dr. Happy Pills kind of sealed the deal regarding TTC again. Along with my regular prescriptions, he also gave me a script for a less effective, but preggo-safe anti anxiety med to start taking as soon as I get a BFP instead of the xanax. All areas are now covered.

So it’s official. I’m a non-smoker (now with more regulated mood swings!). I’m down to a single glass of caffeinated something per day, I’m getting stuck with needles once a week, I’m taking folic acid, and I own my very own yoga mat. I’ve got my bases covered. I’m ready to become a baby making machine.

But…. What if…?

Let me stop here and share with you an excerpt of a draft of something that I started writing a few days back. This is a post about re-framing traumatic experience, which I will most likely publish in the next few days, but with all of this stuff omitted, since you’re reading it here, and it turns out it has no place in that other post. So, here you go:

Take my next BFP – lord knows I’ve had enough trauma with pregnancy to last a lifetime. And I’m in a rather precarious place. It’s going to be a third pregnancy. If this one doesn’t stick that means that we have to start pulling out the big guns. Thinking of plans b, c, and d.

If I miscarry again, that means that in the eyes of every single doctor I turn from “repeated aborter” to “habitual aborter”.

I’m a third time offender. In California that’s a life sentence right there (ha ha I made a judiciary funny).

I’m not dreading pregnancy (well, duh). I’m not even dreading those first few weeks, which I know will be hell on so many levels. The fear. The anticipation. The worry. Did I mention the fear?

But I am determined to make this entire process of going back to TTC a  better experience.

I’ve quit smoking. I’ve tossed the OPK’s. I’m letting go of control. I will have fun having sex with my husband like any other normal couple should.

And once I get that BFP – oh my are things going to be different. There will now be a doctor that I like and trust (already made sure of that). That doctor will be forced to give me an emergency contact number, so that if something goes wrong, I will be going to him to get the bad news, and not be subjected to the humiliation of having a stranger tell me the news.

I will not spend my next pregnancy in denial. I will count the pregnancy from day one and not wait “until I see a heartbeat” or “until the 12th week” to make it count and appreciate it.

Yes I will be scared out of my wits. But I’ll have you guys here with me the entire time. And if I miscarry. If something, spaghetti monster forbid, goes wrong? If I officially make it into the three-timer club……?

This is where I got stuck writing the post. All of the sudden I found myself without an answer to that particular “What if?”. I was so sure I had it all figured out. I was so sure everything was in place. But I forgot about that last “what if?”.

What if I make it into the three-timer club?

What if all of this hope, all of this optimism, all of it gets shattered?

I’ve had all the tests that you’re supposed to have at this stage of the game. As a two-time offender.

That doesn’t mean everything’s ok. It means that everything that’s been tested is ok. There’s still a battery of highly invasive high-tech thingamabobs that have yet to be inserted into my uterus because I haven’t made the transition from “repeat aborter” to “habitual aborter”.

This is what’s been haunting me for the last few days. The possibility that this saga has just begun. That with this next BFP, despite every heart-wrenching step I’ve taken, it still will not be enough. I will still cross the threshold from “repeat aborter” to “habitual aborter”.

It’s that “what if” that is scaring me right now more than anything else.

It’s that “what if” that brings on the self destructive thought of “what’s the point of all of this? what if it won’t make a difference?”

And now – I have no choice but to just wait and see, and push that particular “what if” aside as best as I possibly can.

But I know that this “what if” is what will be haunting me for the next few months. And what sucks is, there’s really nothing I can do about it.  My inner control freak is currently having a serious temper tantrum.

 

It’s Almost Quittin’ Time

5 Mar

Yep. I said March 7th. What was I thinking? That’s two days away! I’m freaking out!

Alan Carr – the quit smoking guru – said that most smokers don’t quit out of fear. He claims it’s fear of stress, of coping, and of withdrawal pangs. For me, it’s fear of failure.

I’ve been smoking since the age of 14. Yes, you read right. 14. I went up to a pack a day by the time I was 18. That means I’ve been a pack-a-day smoker for the better part of 12 years. Basically, my entire adult life.

Now non-smokers won’t understand this – but cigarettes are a crutch for me. Let me explain:

For a teenager, I was doing very “adult” type stuff. I was a night club promoter, I worked on the community TV show, I managed my local Rocky Horror Picture Show cast. Now, that last one doesn’t sound like much, but Haifa is a small city in a small country – so setting up screenings, and getting money for props, make-up, etc. was a huge challenge.

The two adults I usually talked into giving us money and setting up screenings were both smokers. I was a scrawny 15 year old kid. The way I made myself feel more equal to them was by lighting up.

I know they didn’t care whether I smoked or not. Logically, they probably just saw me as a feisty teenager. But that cigarette in my hand made me feel like I could play in the big kids’ sandbox.

My reliance became even worse once I started to direct. The thing with directing is that once you’re on set – you don’t have a moment’s worth of peace. Everyone has questions, everyone wants and needs your input and opinion. It can be overwhelming at times. And sometimes you just NEED A MINUTE to get your head straight and your thoughts together. You can never (especially as a woman) say that you need a minute to figure things out. Your cast and crew would never trust you again. So – “I’m gonna grab a smoke and be right back.” is the perfect excuse.

Plus – the “film biz” is full of smokers. Especially in Israel. You’re surrounded by them. The temptation is always there.

Cigarettes are my crutch. They are my confidence prop. I know it’s bullshit and they’re poison. But feed your brain with a lie for long enough – eventually you start believing it.

In the 16 years that I’ve been a smoker, I’ve attempted quitting several times. Most of them have been in the past three years, since I met shmerson – who is a non-smoker.

  1. Attempt number one was at the age of 16, when i stupidly thought I was just a “casual” smoker. Six hours later I was sucking on a butt taken out of an ashtray, and knew I was in trouble. It took me several years to attempt to quit again.
  2. Attempt two was an utter disaster. It was at the age of 23 (yes! it took me that long to try again! stupid me!). I tried acupuncture. I was also going through a tough time because I had recently lost someone I loved in a suicide bombing. This attempt lasted exactly 24 hours.
  3. Three was actually my first success. It was four months into me and shmerson’s relationship, and I wanted a dog. And he said we could get one if I quit. And we had just moved in together. And he was a non smoker so I was hating myself for smoking. I decided to surprise him. I bought Allen Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking, read it in one night, and the next day, I smoked my last cigarette. This time it lasted 10 whole months. The first three weeks were hell, and I had panic attacks more often (yeah – turns out the nicotine is also a way of me self-medicating), but I made it (I also gained 20 pounds). I finally failed when I started a new high pressure job, in an office where everybody smoked (including the boss). I was having a hard time fitting in, and at the end of my first month there I started panicking at a meeting with him and I felt the need to prove myself. The first thing I did was bum a smoke from him. One week later I was back to a pack a day. I was also promoted to his second-in-command shortly thereafter. Talk about a pavlovian response.
  4. This one happened a few months before the wedding. I had heard of this place which supposedly miraculously cures people of their addiction. I even heard some success stories. I shelled out a LOT of money, to have a guy put 2 crystals in my hands and do some weird shit with my aura or something. The I spent the next three days eating. I started to panic. I wanted to feel pretty on my wedding day. I didn’t want to gain weight and be a whale in a white curtain. Shmerson and I made a deal that I would quit smoking after the honeymoon.
  5. This one was right after my first BFP (right after the honeymoon). It was tough. I did the crystal thing again (they let you come back if you fail), and I had plastic cigarettes. it worked alright, but I felt like shit the whole time. Then I started bleeding, and got the blighted ovum diagnosis. The first thing I did – before breaking down and crying, before calling my mother – before anything – was buy a pack of cigarettes and light up.
  6. This was after my second BFP. I managed to cut down – but I was in so much denial at that point, and having nightly panic attacks, that I made a deal with myself to completely quit once I saw a heartbeat (studies do actually show that smoking leads to damage primarily starting in the second trimester – kind of like alcohol). I  was down to two cigarettes a day when I started bleeding. Obviously, the heartbeat never came.

So that’s it – a total of 6 times in 16 years. Each one ending in miserable failure. And guilt. And self-hatred.

I’m praying to the giant spaghetti monster in the sky that I won’t fail this time. I’m hoping that I’ve set myself up for success as much as possible. I know that the cutting down method will never work for me (see try #6) so I have to go it cold turkey. This time I’m trying it with the patch – under advisement from my shrink.

So here are the ways I’ve set this up so far:

  1. I went to the pharmacy today. I bought the patch. I also bought folic acid and pregnancy tests. I needed to balance out the purchase with a reminder of what I’m doing this for.
  2. I will be keeping my fridge stocked with carrot sticks. This way, I have something to do with my hands and will hopefully not eat a lot of high fat foods.
  3. I bought a yoga mat for myself yesterday. My plan is that each time I want a smoke, I do 5 sun salutations instead.
  4. I will quit before bed. This means – technically, that it may be March 8th. But this way, I smoke my last cigarette, destroy what’s left of the pack, and start the next day smoke free. This worked during my last semi-successful quit attempt.
  5. I will change my morning routine. Instead of a cup of something caffeinated and a smoke, I will start the day with 5 sun salutations and tea.
  6. I will try to keep myself busy – but not with high stress situations. I will paint. I will most likely go to yoga every night. Yeah. I’m really counting on this yoga thing.
  7. I will not be afraid of panic attacks and I will remember that my new friend xanax will be there in case one sets in.
  8. While smoking my last cigarette, I will write a long, detailed post about the reasons why I need to quit, and how much I hate myself for smoking, and what a disgusting habit it is. I will go back and read it each time I feel the urge to smoke.
  9. I am sharing it with the world. Yes. I’m counting on you guys here. If I feel like a smoke, and nothing else works, I will blog about it, and I will need you guys to talk me down. Deal? Deal.

So – that’s it. 2 days, and probably something like three packs to go. Cross your fingers for me!

 

Random Ramblings

9 Feb

I’m hella-tired. It has been a long few days (the fam business is in chaos mode because of a deadline so it’s been crazy. luckily now that my dad and I are getting along it’s much more bearable than it used to be). But all around, brain fried, heady-explodey.

So – I will be completely not funny, not eloquent, and perhaps even not interesting in this post (really makes you want to keep on reading, doesn’t it?)

* I’m waiting till the weekend to pair up all the choco-buddies. I just want to amass enough so that the pairings make sense. Also – people have been commenting that the button doesn’t work. Anyone out there want to give me a hand on how to fix the code in there? Me too tired to google. Me confuzzled.

* I hate databases. It’s kind of insane that I’ve been trained at “the finest” film schools in the world and I spend most of my day on excel spreadsheets. No wonder I don’t have the energy to write.

*No – I didn’t watch “go” today. Bad me! Bad bad me! But I will forgive myself because it’s currently past midnight on my side of the globe and I have been up and working since 8am. Only watching stupid stuff in the background while dealing with what feels like a million spreadsheets. Excel – I don’t like you very much.

* I’ve had to cancel lunch with my mom twice this week already – we re-scheduled again for tomorrow. I’m working late on purpose now so that hopefully I can actually make it this time (the pros and cons of working from home).

*I’m really bitching about work a lot right now, aren’t I?

* on a different note – I haven’t officially announced this yet – but starting next week I will be teaching film! Once a week, tenth grade. I’m really excited! 🙂 I’ve got a bunch of lessons planned out in my head. Now if I could find time to write those out as well… (this is me in over-achievement mode again. anyone feel like helping me sort out my priorities?)

* My cousin, who works in alternative medicine, called today to recommend an acupuncturist in my area. Knowing there is no way Shmerson and I can afford it, I told her that I’d get the number from her “when things are a bit less crazy”. Being the amazing lady that she is, I think she read the undertone of “holy crap I can’t afford this” in my voice, immediately called my mom, who immediately called me and insisted that she will pay for the treatments. That is incredibly sweet of her. I know a bunch of you ladies are riding the needle train. Any advice?

* Have you guys noticed a change in my tone over the last week or so? I didn’t mention this for some reason but last week my shrink adjusted my meds (again!) because he thought the zoloft was too much. We switched around to 2 Xanax XR’s a day and half a pill of zoloft and it seems to be working like a charm. I feel wonderful and incredibly balanced. I’m really glad I found a shrink who knows how to “fine tune” these kinds of things (some have a tendancy to just prescribe one pill, then another to balance the first, then a third, and sometimes a fourth. I’m glad I trusted him enough to stick to his plan). I really feel like I’m almost back to my old self. At least closer to her than I’ve been in years.

I am however really worried about the xanax. I’ve heard a bunch of horror stories about how it can be addictive. My shrink says that most of them are BS and the people who get addicted to it use it recreationally and not to treat an actual condition, so he’s not really worried about that. The one thing that I’m a bit concerned about is that xanax and pregnancy do not mix. He said that no matter what, it’s been proven safe in the first trimester, and once I’m preggo we can find alternatives. But for some reason I’m still apprehensive about this. I do trust him completely because he is very respectful of my concerns – I guess I’m just paranoid (two miscarriages will do that to you, I suppose).

* Our house is a complete and utter disaster zone. Shmerson has been working and studying like mad for the last two weeks since he’s got a bunch of exams, and I haven’t had time to do anything, and when I did I was too busy writhing in pain from that stupid back thing (which is almost gone, thank goodness). I wish we could afford a maid. I feel like such a slob right now. And for those of you reading who know what our place usually looks like – it’s ten times worse right now. I would upload a pic, but I can’t stand the shame of it. No gold star for us this week.

* I miss yoga. Because of my back I couldn’t go all last week, and this week it’s stupid stupid work. I will go tomorrow. I must go tomorrow.

* Things have been moving in a really great direction really fast over the last couple of weeks. From the teaching job, to settling on my next writing project, to, well, everything. The downside? I tend to take on too much at once, and I’m afraid I may be doing that again. Note to self: Make a couple of lists, get your schedule settled, and for goodness sake, clean the house! The good news is that unlike in the past – I am actually AWARE of this stuff and trying to get it under  control. Progress!

* For some reason AF is making my appetite INSANE. And I keep on buying oreos, and then having oreos and milk like, three times a day. This is a first in terms of AF, usually I go for burgers. Weird. Maybe I should just stop buying the oreos? Yes, that would be a good idea.

* did I mention how much I hate excel spreadsheets?

* Ok I’m done now

* ramble ramble ramble

* Really done now. Sleepy-time for me!

Dear website, thanks for being so understanding

20 Jan

So the upped zoloft dosage has been wreaking havoc on my moods and anxiety over the last few days. And for those of you who know me – this of course meant that I spent the better part of the last 72 hours being a google-maniac.

But this time – I found salvation! Hallelujah internet machine! You have come through at last.

I know a couple of you dear readers are on the happy-pills train as well, so I really want to recommend Crazy Meds.

This site is brilliant! Seriously!

It is a mecca of information – especially built for the obsessive googler who makes mountains out of molehills.

It lists side effects, but puts them in perspective. It takes whatever pill you’ve been prescribed and breaks down the pros and cons in a healthy, non-anxiety inducing way. Plus, there’s a forum where people to share their experiences and ask questions.

Of course, I posted my over-analyzing anxious rantings and within a day people who had been through similar stuff answered and helped me calm the heck down.

In short – Me Likey.

The inter-webs are apparently good to me as of late. 🙂

Yay me!

13 Jan

So yeah – it turns out the zoloft kind of stopped working somewhere around last thursday.
I was feeling detached, I was relying heavily on xanax, and I was basically anxiety ridden and with absolutely zero motivation.
I’d been taking half a pill (0.25 mg) a day, and I knew that I would eventually have to up the dosage to a full pill, but the shrink was trying to be careful about it because of the pretty awful reaction I had to them at first.

So just like that, when things were starting to look up, I was once again back to my old, no motivation, do nothing, then freak out about it pattern.  Oh – and the food cravings came back too and I spent all week eating junk food.

And of course – the whole “not talking about it” thing came back as well. It’s amazing how easy it is to fall into old patterns.

Lucky enough – this time, I was aware enough to notice it today. I knew in my heart of hearts that it was time to go up to the normal dosage.

So I called my shrink, told him how I was feeling, and lo and behold, he said the same exact thing.

So starting today I’m on .50 mg of zoloft. I just hope I don’t have the same side effects as I did when I started. A friend with some experience with this stuff assures me that it won’t happen since the medication is already in my system. We shall see. Cross your fingers for me that this time it sticks!

But yeah, I’m pretty proud of myself for recognizing it and catching it in time. Yay me!

On another note – shmerson and I are going to the wedding tomorrow followed by a romantic weekend, so I tried on dresses and shoes today.

Three out of 7 fit me, which isn’t bad, though it could be better. I finally settled on a white number with black flowers and some simple black heels so I can go all out in the jewelry department. Yay ginormous earring!

My plan is to get to the hotel, take a long hot bubble bath, and then spend an hour on my hair and make up. Besides my wedding, I haven’t done that in over a year. Should be fun!

Patience. Again. Always

7 Jan

I admit – I ‘ve had a bit of a relapse in terms of depression and anxiety the last few days. I think the blood pressure thing kind of freaked me out.

Mind you – thanks to the wonders of zoloft and xanax it’s not nearly as bad as it could have been.

But the last few days I admit to backsliding quite a bit.

There is one main difference in the way I handled it this time around though – Today I caught myself. I realized that I was backsliding. And I made the decision to stop it. I met up with friends, and I made plans for the weekend, and I just called people – just to see how they were doing.

And guess what? I already feel a bit better.

It’s amazing what a bit of perspective will do to a person. Really.

Today I met up with an old friend for dinner and I had to catch her up on everything that’s gone down over the last few months. The miscarriages, the depression, the anxiety…

And for the first time I told her about it with a smile. Despite the heavy feeling I’ve been carrying around all day – I managed to get through the story and take it to the positive place.

I also mentioned this blog – and how I feel sometimes that weeks have gone by when it’s only been days, because of the sheer amount of revelations that I continuously have through this newfound clarity.

She said it was lucky I was writing it all down because it’s one thing to have a revelation – and the real challenge is to remember it and act upon it in the long term.

I told her that at the end of the day, all of these little discoveries I make about myself come back to the same theme: patience.

As a person who is used to running, hitting a wall has taught me how important it is to slow the heck down sometimes and just let things progress little by little.

This works against everything I’ve taught myself so far in my life.

But I think that at the end of the day – this will be the lesson I take from this experience. The last few months have been some of the hardest in my life, and I know that the pain and difficulty is far from over.

But I am learning patience. Mostly with myself.

It’s going to be a while before it sinks in fully. But I’ll be patient with myself until it does. 🙂

Everybody hits a figurative wall in their lives sometimes. And those walls are an opportunity to look around, examine, and make a change.

I just didn’t realize it until I finally managed to control my anxiety. Up until now, when I hit a wall – I would just break it down and keep on running.

For now – I will (and should) be content with sitting down, and leaning up against it for a while.

(wow – I am just a well of metaphors tonight, aren’t I?)

I’m stupid. Seriously.

5 Jan

Ok – as some of you may know, I am a chronic googler. I get a weird tingling in my left pinky I google “left pinky tingle”. I get a slight ringing in my ears, I google it.

During my two M/C’s, I was a googling freak. Seriously. And when we were trying to get me preggers as well. I can tell you everything you want to know about ovulation predictor kits, pregnancy tests, temperatures, cervical mucus (my apologies to the men reading this). I am a walking miscarriage/conception wikipedia.

So, as part of my whole “let’s take care of my body better” pledge I went to a GP and she ordered a round of blood tests. When she took my BP she thought it was high, so she also ordered me to get a machine hooked up to my arm and get my bp monitored for 24 hours.

So first – the blood tests: I have high cholesterol, low vitamin D and low sodium, and slightly elevated lymphocytes.

Google machine – commence the paranoid madness!!!

So – I may have kidney or liver disease, I may have cancer (of course!), lupus, or it could be nothing.

To lessen the freak out I call my doctor, since my appointment with her isn’t for another week. She calls me back and basically says: “Listen, if I saw anything terrible in your blood tests I would have called you already. Don’t worry, everything’s fine. I’ll see you on the tenth.”

I say “thanks!” and hang up.

Then my internal monologue begins:

Me: she’s a doctor! listen to her!

Me: What does she know? Hasn’t she ever seen “House?” it could be Lupus!

Me: Oh shut up.

Then my BP results come back. The woman who gives hubby the printout is just a tech. I’m not there because I’m sleeping. She hands it to him and says – well, it’s high.

I get the printout from shmerson in the evening. Yep. According to the google machine it’s high.

And another google-athon begins:

Hypertention! Heart disease! Cancer!

and did I mention:

IT COULD BE LUPUS! Seriously people – watch an episode of house sometime.

Or maybe it’s that I have anxiety and that sometimes causes a high BP? or that merely the act of measuring my BP caused me anxiety which influenced my BP?

Nah – that couldn’t be it. That would be a reasonable explanation.

So one xanax and 30 minutes more of obsessive googling later, I’ve decided to be more productive and post to the blog.

The truth is – my high cholesterol is hereditary and linked to PCOS.

The truth is – I smoke and don’t exercise enough.

The truth is – that is most likely what my doctor will tell me on the 10th.

The truth is – I need a serious lifestyle change.

And all i can think about is that I like steak and chocolate cake (that rhymes! I will not eat them in a box….), and that I might have to give them up.

Or become a crazy eater like my mom (I’ll leave my mommy issues for a different post).

Urgh. Must… Stop… Googling!!!!

Me: just suck it up, plan out your meals better, get some exercise, and when the shrink OK’s it – quit smoking.

Me: Wait… Are you sure? Let me google that…

I am so incredibly sick of feeling this way

26 Dec

Today was a two xanax day. The first because I was nervous to find out the blood test results, and the second was because I met a up with a friend and any and all talk about the future became completely overwhelming (I have more to post about this meet-up, but will do it another time).

I called my mom and told her that my B12 levels were within the norm. Then I started crying.

Yep – this means that I need to find medication that works for me. This means that there isn’t a magical answer and cure for what ails me.

I also called my aunt and cried to her for a while.

They both said basically the same thing;

Just snap out of it. Everything is fine. You’re driving yourself up the wall. Get over it – start taking care of yourself and you’ll be ok. You’re exaggerating. Calm down.

Well – thank you so much for that! I just need to snap out of it! Of course! How did I not think of that sooner? I mean *snap!* here we go! I’m all better! Thanks for the great advice mom and aunt!

I know they meant well. I don’t blame them. I just… well, I just can’t seem to do it.

I so want to not feel this way anymore. I so want to have energy, and to function and to feel ambition and hope constantly – not just in sporadic waves.

But I don’t. I’m not. And it sucks. And I want it to stop sucking.

Please oh please can things stop sucking now?

Is this hope or just the Xanax talking?

25 Dec

I’ve spent most of today with this unexplained sense of excitement. yesterday there was a bit of a breakthrough with one of my film projects, and tomorrow I’ve got the blood tests – so maybe things are starting to look up?

Or it could just be the xanax. This is why me no likey pharmaceuticals. We shall see.

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