Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Mommy's Happy Pill

Yesterday was a bad day.  Now, bad is relative.  For some, having another snow day makes it a bad day.  I'll be the first to admit to groaning when I learned we were having YET ANOTHER snow day today!  A bad day for me usually means my responses are a bit snippy, everyone and everything is on my nerves, but I can pull out of it.  

A bad day used to mean something entirely different.  It was dark.  Heavy.  Unmanageable.  Interfering with daily life.  After exhausting every non prescription idea and remedy, I finally got to the desperation place to try an antidepressant; much to my family's relief.  I hated the first ones I tried as they made me not feel anything.  When I finally found one that made the highs not so high and the lows not so low, I kept taking it.  Then, we decided to start a family so I stopped taking it for several years while I was pregnant and/or nursing.  

Fast forward to depression interfering with daily life again and getting back to the place of admittance that an antidepressant is needed.  Which brings us back to yesterday...

Due to a situation with our insurance and a mistake they made, I was delaying filling my Rx until my co-pay was back in working order.  I started decreasing my dose and getting two days per pill in hopes of any day the co-pay would be back and I could fill my Rx.  Well, without talking to anyone (stupid pride), my bottle ran out and I went a couple days without - cold turkey (a big no-no).  After several hours of misery yesterday, I called the pharmacist and found out my Rx was not super expensive!  I then found a coupon online that reduced the price by a third!  Prescription filled and full dose was back in order.  YAY!  

This post is not a Rx pusher but a "real life" post about life with depression.  I learned several things this past week.  One - my Rx is needed.  Two - Should I decide to stop taking said Rx, I need to do so gradually so I do not have horrid withdrawal symptoms (shakes, skin crawling, skin itching, skin tender to the touch, foggy head). Third - I need to get the facts of my situation before making decisions (price was affordable and this whole thing could have been avoided if I had called pharmacy 10 days ago).  Four - I need to tell my hubby when I start messing with my dosage so he is at least aware my mental health is being compromised.

Sometimes depression is for a season.  Sometimes it is because of a season.  Sometimes it just is.  There are MANY things one can do to ease the symptoms of depression and these help the overall mental health of people in general: spiritual disciplines, exercise, eating healthy, vitamins, and essential oils to name a few.  I feel better in every way when I am disciplined in those areas.  For some of us, though, that is not enough.  And that is okay.  Sometimes medical issues can be controlled without prescriptions.  I manage my cholesterol without an Rx (through diet and exercise), another family member controls high blood pressure through diet and exercise; so sometimes mental health issues can be controlled and managed without a Rx.  Sometimes, a prescription is needed to get things under control faster (high blood pressure or cholesterol, for example) and then the number can be managed without the Rx.  All this to say, sometimes a prescription is needed and sometimes it is not.  It does mean the person who chooses to take a Rx is taking the easy way out nor does it mean they are less of a person for taking said Rx.

Anyway, yesterday was a bad day.  Today is better.  Tomorrow will be better yet (especially if the kids go to school).  Mental health issues do not need to be taboo.  I love Jesus and He loves me and our relationship is not based on whether or not I take a pill.  Conversations about depression and other mental health issues are needed in the church so we can better support one another.  We talk about other health issues - it's high time we talk about this one, too.

Here is a snip-it of Scripture that is currently speaking to me.  Feel free to read the whole section, though, for the bigger picture:

O  lord, you are my lamp. The lord lights up my darkness. In your strength I can crush an army; with my God I can scale any wall. “God’s way is perfect. All the lord ’s promises prove true. He is a shield for all who look to him for protection. 2 Samuel 22:29-31

#depression #mentalhealthawareness #semicolonproject 

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