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Tag Archives: zoloft

The List

24 Jun

Well, Shmerson came home for a blissful 10 hours. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies were baked, shrimp and spinach basil Gnocchi was cooked, a couple of “deposits” were made happily, much cuddling was had, and now he’s gone for almost two weeks.

After the second “deposit” Shmerson and I gave my eggs and his swimmers a nice little talking to. We explained to his guys that they have to swim to the left, and they have to hang out for a while. We explained to little lefty that she needs to pop soon, and go down Ole’ Lefty to meet the swimmers. Hopefully they were listening.

I’m up against two torturous weeks now. I know saying the word “torturous” may be a bit melodramatic, but so be it. I HATE it when Shmerson’s away. I have a really hard time caring for myself when he’s not around – something that I know I need to change. I think if anything, that’s going to be my mission for these next two weeks, ignore the fact that I’m on my TWW and concentrate on things like actually cooking myself meals, meeting friends, cleaning the house, and getting some work done.

I went to Dr. Happy Pills today and he upped my zoloft dosage, because it’s been evident that right now it’s not completely doing the trick. Hopefully that will help me in this endeavor.

For now – I’m obsessively using OPK’s, hoping that Shmerson’s little guys survive until my follie decides to pop, and everything goes smoothly. Most of my regular readers know I like to make lists, so I’ve decided to share with you my list of things that need to go right for us to actually come out with a baby from this month. I’ve italicized milestones that we’ve never reached before for easy understanding, and because I’m cool and organized like that. Now – on to the list! Yay lists!

  1. Shmerson’s super swimmers need to survive until my follie pops.
  2. This means that my follie better pop in the next 24-48 hours.
  3. Little Lefty needs to go down Ole’ Lefty, and meet the swimmers, to create an actual embryo.
  4. Embryo needs to nestle in properly, in the uterus.
  5. Betas need to double properly.
  6. We need to see a heartbeat.
  7. We need to make it past 8 weeks.
  8. We need to make it to the second trimester
  9. We need the scans to show a healthy baby.
  10. We need the baby to hang out in my uterus hopefully for a full nine months. 
  11. The baby needs to come out healthy and whole. 
  12. I need to stay healthy and whole. 
I know there are plenty of other milestones on the way that I’ve missed. Right now I’m hoping we make it to number 4. Then I’ll hope to make it to 5. If we’re lucky, we’ll hit six and seven. Hopefully from there I’ll be able to breathe just a little bit.
I realized the other day that I’ve been pregnant 3 times, and I’ve never once seen a heartbeat. I hope I get to someday, and hopefully someday soon.
Sometimes I close my eyes and fantasize about what will happen when I finally go into labor one day. I imagine the nurse asking me which pregnancy this is for me. I’ll answer it’s the fourth. She’ll smile and tell me that I must be an old pro. I’ll tell her it’s my first child and make her squirm. For some reason I’ve been liking the idea of making others squirm lately. Don’t know why. I just hope that it really will be the fourth, and we won’t have to say 5th, 6th, 7th, and so on. I don’t know how much more strength I have for this.
But for right now all I can do is convince myself that Nachos for both lunch and dinner are not a healthy nutritional decision, and that staring at the second line on the OPK won’t magically make it darker.
That, at least, would be progress.
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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!!

Writer’s Block Over?

26 Feb

Apparently so. Yes – I put it off till the last minute. The deadline is two days away. Yes, it’s an adaptation.

But I sat down and wrote a 3 page synopsis today. And I think I did a damn good job too. It needs a bit more work – but I did it.

And you know what? I’m so frakking relieved I can’t even explain it.

Confession time: apart from this blog, I haven’t written a lick since my breakdown in december.

I think I was afraid that the meds would mess with my creativity, or would make me different – or something. I don’t know. I was just scared of trying to write and having something crappy come out.

I’d heard that anti-depressants can mess with your creativity, and despite proof to the contrary in the form of this blog, I was scared to death of attempting something as daunting as a film synopsis.

But the meds had no effect. I did it. I can do it.

*doing the happy dance*

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!

Conversations with my therapist

26 Jan

I walk in today, still feeling down, still unsure of everything.

Me: I’m so confused. I met with a head hunter and she told me what my potential income would be for a full time job, and for freelance and part time, and basically said that in terms of where we live, I have to take into consideration at least a 40 minute commute because there’s nothing in the area.

Her: Ok

Me: And I had a meeting at that community center, and they love me and want me to teach there, but they’re not sure whether they have space for me this year. I’ll know next week. Either way the salary is crap.

Her: Ok.

Me: And I figured out that the best way to move forward in terms of getting a film off the ground is to go for this grant along with the guy who wrote “make-up” with me – because I think it would be good to have the safety net of a writing partner and it just makes sense.

Her: Ok. So what’s wrong?

Me: I’m freaking out! I’m depressed! I don’t know what I want! I don’t know anything!

Her: *laughs*

Me: What’s so funny?

Her: You actually know quite a bit.

Me: Huh?

Her: You’ve just spent 10 minutes giving me your current options, with real, concrete explanations. This is the first time you’ve ever done that. There was no fantasy – just real steps to getting somewhere.

Me: Really?

Her: Really.

Me: huh. But I don’t know! I can’t make a decision! I’m so scared!

Her: What scares you?

Me: *15 minute rant in which I list everything I’ve ever been afraid of* Oh, and I’m going to die.

Her: None of this stuff has happened to you.

Me: I know. I tell that to myself. And then I get around it by telling myself that whatever happens I’m going to die eventually. ***

Her: Well, making decisions isn’t going to kill you.

Me: I know it’s not rational, but this is what I tell myself and then I start having an anxiety attack.

Her: (keep in mind that this woman rarely says more than three sentences per session – so this was mind blowing) You know what I think? I think that this thought is actually your insecurity  – your fear of living. Every time you stick your head out the door – that thought sneaks up and goes “Boo! get back into that dark room!” Every single time. Because you don’t have faith in yourself. You know how last week we spent the entire session talking about make-up? Well, guess what? I didn’t need to talk about make up. You did. I saw make up. I know what you’re worth and it’s a heck of a lot. And it’s not just in movies. You’re smart, you’re talented in so many ways, and yet you cling to other people telling you this rather than believing it yourself. So every time you peak your head out the door that little thought sneaks up on you and says “Boo! You’re not good enough! Get back in the corner!” And you listen. You just need to realize how wonderful you are, and maybe that thought won’t sneak up on you as often.

Me: *head explodes*

Me: *miraculously does not have a panic attack during this entire conversation*

Me: But I’m scared. I’m scared that if I’m happy I’ll die.

Her: I promise you you are no more likely to die than the rest of us.

Me: *bawling. still no panic attack*

Holy jeez guys – I think the zoloft is starting to work. (not to mention that my therapist is a brilliant and amazing lady)

 

***this is the first time I’ve voiced this in writing, and maybe only the third time I’ve expressed it out loud in any way.Simply writing it out is making me anxious. But no panic attack, so progress!

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.

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. 🙂

Backslide

19 Jan

I’m really frustrated I think upping the zoloft dosage is messing with me. I’ll confess that despite my somewhat cheery posts over the last few days, I’ve been feeling incredibly detached. I was really hoping that thursday was a turning point, but now I’m just feeling frustrated with this whole process.

I hate not being able to differentiate the zoloft side effects from my own feelings.

Here’s the story:

On Saturday, before we left Jerusalem to head home, we discovered that our bank account was overdrawn.

It’s a simple enough fix, and we’re taking care of it, but it’s just another blow to add to the several blows of reality I’ve received over the last couple of weeks.

The moment I was feeling well enough to function, reality hit me over the head and I feel like I’m falling into old bad patterns again and it’s driving me nuts.

I guess the upside is that I am, despite this, taking steps to get my career sorted out, and I’m functioning on a basic level – which is more than I could have said a month ago…

I know it’s a process but this whole two steps forward, one step back thing is driving me up the wall.

I’m trying my hardest to be patient with myself, but I feel like I’ve been in this crazy detached state ever since reality slipped back into the process.

I used to be so strong and deal with these kinds of things so easily – now, everything is making me anxious, and I have no idea if it’s a stupid zoloft increase side effect or really there.

Urgh. I hate this.

Pathetic, Really

17 Jan

So my last post was all about me being “bla”. I’ve been trying to figure out what made me feel like this after such a wonderful weekend. Part of it, I’m sure, is adjusting to the new Zoloft dose, but part of it has been that my absolute longing for a baby has been re-ignited in what I think is a rather unhealthy way.

See – I’ve really been trying this whole patience thing. It’s been working on and off mostly for the last month.

I know there are steps that need to be taken before Shmerson and I TTC again. Here! Let me outline them for you!

1) I need to quit smoking (again).

2) I need to be in a place where I no longer need to rely on xanax for anxiety.

3) I need to get through all of my blood tests and make sure everything is ok with me health-wise.

4) Shmerson and I need to be in a place where we’re financially stable long term.

We’ve been taking steps for all of these things, and they really do seem like they are around the corner. 1, 2, and 3 are most likely happening within the next month, and 4 – though far more complicated – is well on it’s way.

But still – I need patience. And one of the best things in my life is testing that patience.

This is Luna:

Top photo courtesy of Squish, of course.

Ok – I am definitely the farthest from objective here, but she is the best doggy ever.

Shmerson and I adopted her in May of ’08, when she was about 5 months old.

This was fairly early in our relationship but we didn’t really care because it was obvious that we were both in it for the long haul.

When I first saw her picture on a dog adoption board I just knew in my heart she would be ours. We drove two hours to meet her and took her home immediately, and two days later, she was already whining when one of us left the house.

Luna is sensitive, she likes to cuddle, and I will be the first to admit that she is incredibly needy and could probably use a bit of training (once we can afford it).

But this dog is so incredibly smart an loving even without that. I love her to bits, unconditionally.

My family always teases us that we treat her like an ad-hoc baby. And we do. We have conversations about how to raise her, we babble to her in baby talk, we are over-protective of her and we cuddle with her. A lot.

Yesterday, I picked her up and cradled her in my arms. She, as usual gave herself over to my cradling immediately. I looked at her for a moment and realized that I was holding her as if I was holding a baby.

The longing in my stomach became almost unbearable. I started to realize that I was trying to make her fill a void that she never could.

I spent the rest of the evening melancholy, and when shmerson and I went to sleep last night, two seconds before he was away in dream land, I said to him “Shmerson, I want a baby.”

He answered “Soon. Very soon.”

Then I couldn’t sleep and I thought I would blog about it. But then I thought – what’s the point? I mean, this longing has never really gone away. It was just that moment of realization that made it more poignant at the time.

It took me all day today to process the fact that this amazing little puppy is a trigger. I just hope I don’t hold it against her (and against myself).

Urgh.

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!

17 day diet my ass!

9 Jan

Ok – I watch Dr. Phil. I know, it’s a show that is at times ridiculous, incredibly preachy, and cheesy on many levels. But I watch it. Sue me.

Today I saw the episode kicking off the shill-a-thon that is the “17 day diet challenge”, and I’m pissed off.

This man is supposed to be a mental health professional and it’s seriously upsetting to me that he’s pimping out this BS program.

I’ll start by saying this: weight issues are solved not by changing what you eat (though of course that is something you need to do). Weight issues are caused by emotional eating. They are a symptom! Not the problem.

And the fact that this supposed mental health professional basically ignores this  in what he preaches is incredibly upsetting to me.

I’ve written here before about my own struggles with my weight. Since the age of 17, I’ve been yo-yoing between 120 pounds and 190 pounds.

I gain the weight, go on a diet, lose the weight, and then gain it again.

Now that I have some clarity – it’s obvious to me why this happens.

I was depressed, I suffered from extreme anxiety. I self-medicated with food.

I was raised to see food as a comfort. I celebrated with food, I mourned with food, I ate and ate “because I deserved it”.

I do not know one single person who is overweight, that does not also have problems with depression, anxiety, and/or low self-esteem. Not one. I literally ran through every person I know who has weight issues, and they all meet this criteria.

Since going on zoloft, and beginning to deal with my emotional issues, I have lost weight, and I’ve done so without even trying. I don’t have the urge to binge anymore, I’m not obsessed with food, and I no longer eat until I’m stuffed – only until I’m full.

I realize that especially because of my high cholesterol and high blood pressure I need to take more steps to eat healthier, and I need to exercise more. I’m working on it, step by step, and getting better at it every day.

There is no magic diet. You lose weight by eating healthy and moving your body. It’s not rocket science, yet people struggle with it all the time.

“Dr” Phil showed taped segments of the competitors in this 17 diet whatever, and each one of them mentioned, at least in passing, going through some tragedy in their lives, becoming overweight as a result of a major life change, or emotional eating.

Yet for some reason – nobody even brought up the thought that treating these people’s obvious issues with depression would be a far better approach – instead of making them run through tires on national television.

Yes – of course they need to learn how to eat healthier and exercise – but when you’re depressed, or feeling bad about yourself – are you really going to be able to find the motivation to get off your fat ass and do something about it? Of course not!

Losing weight is about loving yourself – it’s about saying to yourself “I deserve to be pretty and healthy”.

Gaining weight is about self-hate. I never stuck to anything because in my heart of hearts I felt like I didn’t deserve to feel pretty. I didn’t deserve to be healthy. I was engaging in self-destructive behavior. Period. This is what substance abuse is. Self-medication. It’s the same for smokers, for alcoholics, and yes – for people with weight issues.

Why is it that when a heroin addict goes into rehab he or she spends most of their time dealing with childhood trauma or abusive spouses or depression or whatever, but when an overweight person goes on a diet not one moment is spent in figuring out why they overeat in the first place?

I saw a few months back a story about some guy who was on “The Biggest Loser” and lost something like 200 pounds, and then a year later, away from the cameras, he gained it all back.

Of course he did! Because losing weight did not solve any of his REAL problems.

It pisses me off that a supposed licensed psychiatrist would be so irresponsible as to perpetuate the myth of magic diets.

There is no such thing as a “diet” that works. What works for people with lifelong struggles with weight is to figure out the true cause for their self-medication.

“Dr” Phil needs to stop peddling some bullshit goods that will supposedly make these people magically thin and happy.

They may end up thin – but trust me – the second those cameras go away, those people ain’t gonna be happy.

Zoloft is not a magic diet pill. The reason I’ve lost weight while taking it is because I have real medication for my emotional problems, and no longer feel the need to self-medicate with food.

I still have a long way to go – and many pounds to lose. But I will not be buying any gimmicky books to do so. I’m just going to work on getting healthy and moving my body more, and I know that if I continue to look after my mental health, my physical health will easily follow.

It’s not that I’m against legitimate programs like weight watchers that help a person deal with the day-to-day practicality of eating right. They do good things, and emphasize long-term change.

But I went on weight watchers – and I lost 30 pounds on it – and then I gained it all back – BECAUSE I WAS DEPRESSED.

“Dr” Phil needs to take a good hard look at his own (overweight!) self and start educating his audience about the real causes of weight gain. It’s not the fast food joints. It’s not the dramatic pounds of lard that he dumps on his stage to illustrate what his guests consume every month.

No – it’s people with emotional issues that are self medicating in order to deal with them.

Deal with the cause – and the symptom will eventually take care of itself (with a little bit of hard work of course – but I know that it will).

I’ll end with an anecdote: last night I went out to a show with friends. When it was over, we went to a restaurant. I was starving because I hadn’t really eaten all day. I ordered food (some healthy, some a bit less – but nothing too damaging), and I ate until I was full. And then – I didn’t order dessert. I didn’t even consider it. It wasn’t on my radar. I was full, I didn’t need to eat chocolate cake because “I was out with friends” or because “I deserved it.”

I just didn’t need it because I wasn’t hungry anymore. It’s as simple as that. And I was clear headed enough to see this. There was no internal yes or no battle here. I wasn’t hungry so I didn’t eat it.

These last few weeks have been the first time in 13 years that I have gone out to eat on several occasions and not even broached the subject of dessert.

And no BS book was involved. All that was involved was clarity.

 

 

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?)

Food for Thought

3 Jan

ok – I’m making up a new tag – “daily revelation”.

It seems to be happening all the time, so I’m just gonna go with it. Though I’m sure some of you readers out there are getting quite sick of them. I promise I’ll post something funny soon, ok?

So I’ve always felt fat. I remember feeling fat at age 11.

I wasn’t fat. Not even close. What happened was that I developed boobs like MEGA-early and a really mean girl at school starting calling me “porky” and that just became my internal monologue.

I only actually BECAME fat at the age of 17.

So my daily revelation: Food was a way of self medicating my depression and anxiety.

Yeah, I know- DUH!!! – right?

but I seriously had a lightbulb moment about this.

Here’s the thing. The last few years I’ve had an obsession with food. Cooking it, eating, watching shows about it. It was so huge that I actually considered at one point saying “fuck it all” and studying to be a chef.

And I admit – I am a righteous cook. I really am.

But a funny thing has been happening since my head cleared. I’m no longer obsessed with food.

It could be a side effect of the zoloft – or it could really be the fact that I no longer need to medicate myself with it.

Since I started zoloft I have lost around 5-6 pounds. I eat less. I hardly ever think about food. I even need to remind myself to eat sometimes.

In my previous post I talked about my first true encounter with depression and anxiety at age 17.

Surprise surprise, it is also around the time I first became fat. I ballooned up to 180 pounds by the time I was 18.

I’ve been a yo-yo ever since. I diet, I lose the weight, I gain it back again. Over and over.

I’m now around 145 pounds. After the second miscarriage I ballooned up to around 150-155 (I never looked at the scales). At my wedding I weighed 140-ish. At my thinnest I am usually around 120.

I love the way I look at 120. I feel sexy. everything just kind of “sits” right.

And each time I manage to diet and reach that weight (it’s happened 3 times since the age of 17), I up and gain it all over again each time quicker than before.

A while ago (pre-breakdown, post-miscarriage) Schmerson and I were talking about how I would like to lose weight, quit smoking, and just generally “feel better”.

After a long conversation the conclusion was basically “all of these things have the same cause. Treat the cause, and the symptoms will more or less take care of themselves.”

Yep. Apparently we were right. Since the cyclical never-ending fog of constant anxiety has lifted, I’ve lost 5 pounds, and I wasn’t even trying. I eat much less. I get offered chocolate and turn it down because I’m full. Unheard of.

There was half a loaf of home-baked brioche that was literally thrown in the garbage because I didn’t feel like eating it. That’s a miracle in my world.

I passed by two places that sell doughnuts today and I didn’t stop in to buy one. I almost did out of habit. But then I didn’t. Inconceivable!

I feel like I finally grasp the concept of self-medicating. Weird.

But you know what’s even weirder? Food has become a huge part of my identity over the last few years. Even my mom, when she’s got a bunch of random ingredients in the fridge, calls me up so I can tell her what to cook with them.

And for the last few weeks that part of my identity has kind of disappeared. I don’t know if I like that.  It’s incredibly strange.

But I do like the very welcome side effect of the disappearing poundage.

We shall see.

Honey – is it normal to just – listen to the radio?

28 Dec

Hi there Zoloft!

Thanks for kicking in. Took you a while.

The hubby and I were driving to tel aviv today. At one point I asked him – well, you can tell from the title of this post what I asked him.

Hubby: What?

Me: You know – like, sometimes, is it normal to just sit and listen to what people on the radio are saying and not think of other things at the same time as you’re listening to them?

Hubby: Um, yeah….

Hi me! Welcome to normal.

I described it to a friend of mine today. It’s as if for 13 years (!) someone has been telling me that the sky is green, and one day I just stick my head out the window and open my eyes and the sky is… blue.

Mind you, being the control freak that I am – I didn’t completely embrace it. In fact, it freaked me out. Think about it like this – if for thirteen years you had a buzzing in your ear, it would become something that you’re used to. And perhaps – when that buzzing disappeared, you’d think something went wrong with your hearing.

IT IS SO FREAKIN’ WEIRD!!

I had a few moments where the anxiety was in the back of my mind (at this point purely the psychological type) and was telling me – panic attack! you should be having a panic attack!

And I admit it came close to it – but in the end, I was fine. I am fine so far.

I actually had fun today. For the first time since my honeymoon six months ago – I had fun.

I guess I just need to get used to this new normal.

Weird!

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