Apart from a handful of days, I can’t say I have felt depressed in the last 6 weeks or so. Every morningÂ since 5th October I have scored my symptoms using my PHQ-9 daily, and also the things I do to look after myself.
Each item is scored out of three, then I take an average of the total scores, so that a score of 3.0 on the chart here means I am very depressed (blue line), and 3.0 on the orange line would mean I am doing all the things that make me feel better, a lot.
This chart doesn’t say much that is useful – I need to look more carefully at the data and how to analyse it forÂ any patterns and correlations. However, the exercise of recording my scores has been helpful in two important ways: firstly in Â establishing my getting up early habit; and secondly, the mere act of monitoring the things I do to make myself feel better makes me do them more, because I want good scores!
Anyhow, I have been feeling OK recently. Of all the things I monitor as helpful to my mood, I would say 8 hours of good quality sleep seems the most important. A couple of late nights in a row and I start to feel low again. Â Running two miles with Raisin in the morning also seems to make a big difference.
In other news, I have decided to try coming off prozac, and am taking it every other day for a month.
So, am I depressed? No.
Do I have depression?Â Let’s say it’s in remission. It will flare up again, no doubt. I have noticed that even when I feel well and untroubled by my inner critic constantly telling me I’m a failure/fraud/freak/fool, at night I dream I am these things – in painfully realistic detail. Â Great eh? Take it away Billie…