I’m at the end of my menstrual cycle (women know what I mean) and I got through Christmas so I really expect to feel good right now, regardless of me being off my antidepressant. Shouldn’t everything be balanced (since my hormones are now reset) and all of my stress gone (with Christmas past)? I had one of the best Christmas’ in years, where my husband and kids gave me all of the things I love. I got jewelry, my first pair of UGG boots, a Yankee candle, cute pj’s and a pair of nude pantyhose (which is more like a gift to my husband because it feeds a little fetish of his). But, instead of feeling euphoric, a familiar uneasiness blankets my mood and I am jittery and anxious.
Later this week, out-of-town family members are coming to stay with me. They visit a few times a year but this time, with me off my meds, I am stressing-out. I really shouldn’t be. It’s no different than all of the other times. But, I worry about where guests will sleep, the cleaning to get their rooms ready and all of the food shopping and cooking I have to do. Yesterday I cleaned the main level of my house and cursed everyone and felt pissed off the whole time. I hate my house, its size, my husband for how little he does (even though he was in the kitchen using a propane torch to fix a leak under the sink) and my kids for being so g-damn selfish and never doing anything I don’t explicitly ask them to do. The stress was unwarranted but, nevertheless, palpable.
I wished I could pop a pill to settle my nerves. Would a Xanax or Klonopin help in this kind of situation? I never took anxiety meds so I do not know. Instead, while I was busily cleaning, I fantasized about the bottle of wine I would drink later that evening. I recognize that drinking is a form of self-medication but the thing is alcohol offers a rapid lifting of anxiety. The other option is to take the first dose of Wellbutrin and wait for my anxiety/depression to lift. How long will that take?! The truth is I’ve learned to live in this state of fright or flight and I know I can do it again, with a little help from my friend, Pinot Grigio.
But, I am seeing things more realistically. Why wouldn’t I want to take the Wellbutrin to work its magic again because I know antidepressants have a positive effect. I have read many personal experiences that Wellbutrin doesn’t have as many of the negative side effects that I’ve previously suffered with other antidepressants. I lean toward taking the Wellbutrin as I do not want to live with constant hate, anger, sadness, anxiety and shame.
Exasperating this stress is The Perp (who sexual abused me as a child) is also coming to visit along with the rest of my extended family. The joy of being the only female sibling in the family – I am the one who gets the family together. My s-i-l’s would never do it! I explained to my mom that I am starting a new antidepressant and I don’t know how I will be feeling. I also said if The Perp (with her I refer to him as my brother) is coming I can only take 2 nights of them staying at my house. I consider that generous considering all I’ve been through regarding my mom and The Perp. (For one, I believed my mother knew about the childhood sexual abuse and that she protected him instead of me. She says she did not know. Two, my brother is a self-indulgent spoiled man who my mother continues to enable.) This situation makes it hard for me to be around them but I love my mom and she is getting older. As for The Perp, I’ve forgiven him enough to not blame or hate him for the past. Now, I just loathe the person he is. He is not easy to be around because he’s self-centered and when he’s in my house I have a short fuse. As an aside, he acknowledges what he did to me and has apologized and made an attempt at making amends. Stubborn as I am, I accept the apology but will not allow him to be a part of my healing so I don’t talk to him about the past. Anyhow, I have agreed to have my family descend on my house for an after-Christmas get together. I must be nuts and I can thank my husband for supporting me in this. If it weren’t for his help in cooking and hosting the affair I could never do it.
Yesterday, I filled the Rx of 50mg Wellbutrin. The pharmacy said they do not have that dosage and would have to contact my therapist, Lynn (who can prescribe meds because she is an RN). Lynn okayed the 100 mgs pills to be cut in half so I get the prescribed 50 mgs. Would you believe I bought only 15 pills for the full cost of the 30 day prescription? That irritates me that my therapist can’t prescribe 100mg for a month and tell me to cut them in half. So what if I would get 2 months worth? Who is she working for anyway – me or the pharmaceutical companies???
I took my first Wellbutrin pill (1/2 of 100 mg.) last night and, as I wait to feel my depression to lift, I drank a bottle of wine. The wine offered immediate relief to my anxiety but I hope the medication will give me a longer term solution. Time will tell…
P.S. I know some of you are reading this and thinking I’m doing the wrong thing by drinking and taking antidepressants. Yes, I know. If only the life of a depressive were so easy as to do what they know is right. It just isn’t so. And I wrote this blog entry as a kind of diary so that I can remember the day after my 2011 Christmas; I do not write in a way that will suit those of you that think my behavior is wrong. Eventually, I hope I can stop drinking and that’s why I have a therapist and I’m writing about it. Fred Rogers, a former children’s show personality in the US, once said “What’s Mentionable is Manageable.” I believe that to be the case. The more recognition/attention we give to something, the better it can be understood – eventually. For me, I am trying to treat my depression in the best way and you, the reader of my blog, are along for this ride. I do appreciate the companionship but not the judgment.