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The last two weeks have been difficult, due to persistent low mood combined with random symptoms of depression taking it in turns to assail me. One day it’s tiredness, the next terrible memory/brain power, then poor concentration, then tearfulness, then listlessness etc etc.  The worst day was probably when memories of past humiliations kept popping into my head from nowhere. Ugh.

I feel better now, but not completely back to ‘normal’, whatever that is. In many ways it has been an interesting experience, and I noticed some things I might not have expected:

  • when this episode started, it seemed really important to know what had triggered it. Now I am out the other side (I hope), I am much less interested
  • I am in the middle of a Mindfulness for Recurring Depression course. Mindfulness practice has just not been possible during this fortnight – too difficult to find the motivation, the focus, or even anything to work with. I have been filled with a big impenetrable darkness
  • of the Things That Help me the most (exercise, getting up early, 8h sleep, social contact, sunshine), I couldn’t manage exercise or social contact but I needed extra sleep – 3 or 4 more hours a day
  • I have been taking aspirin, and thinking it helps
  • friends have urged me to see the doctor during this time, and review my decision to stop taking antidepressants. I would give the same advice in their shoes. But I really don’t want to go back on prozac. Why not?
  • if this bad spell was a reaction to Raisin’s accident, as I suspect, then it happened two weeks after the event. Why?
  • I have been recording a video diary, and the difference in how I look and speak on bad days and good days is marked. Friends who say they know when I am not well just from hearing me talk might actually be right

Two things come out of this experience. First, I am now on a mission to understand my resistance to going back on the happy pills, and to research the pros and cons of SSRIs so I have the information to make a rational decision.  It took me so long to escape from the clutches of alcohol, that I am afraid of being in thrall to another chemical crutch.

The other thing is something mindfulness teaches: acceptance. I need to learn to accept that a bad day does not necessarily mean a relapse, that it is OK to have a bad day, and that it will probably pass.

Thank you everyone for your support during this time.

This video keeps cropping up for some reason, it’s lovely:

 

returning from the brink, and holding out against prozac

5 thoughts on “returning from the brink, and holding out against prozac

  • Hi Libby,
    My depression gets worse when I am sick and on cloudy days.
    Extra sleep is very helpful for me, too.
    I am working very hard on changing my self-talk, as you said. One or two bad days, does’t mean I’ll never be healthy again.
    Funny, last week I was crying about my lack of social contacts, and now next week, I have too many of them!
    YIKES!
    I know you will continue to get better!
    HUGS!!!
    Wendy

  • Hi Libby,
    I think I am coming out of my not so great depression!
    I hope my mood stabilizes for awhile!
    I hope you and Lucy had a good meet-up!
    I told her I loved your blog!
    Hugs,
    Wendy

    1. Wendy I didn’t realise you have been having a bad patch! I really hope you are feeling better now. Keep looking after yourself and wait for the worst to pass, as it surely will.
      Thanks for your comment on Lucy’s blog – it was great to see her on Monday, she is inspiring and supportive and kind like you. x

  • I know those feelings all too well. I remember when I came off Prozac and everyday was a bad day for a month or two. Was a horrible experience. Also know what you feel like about trying to be mindful when you’re in a bad way. I always struggle to maintain my concentration and my interest to bother or care. Keep doing it and perhaps make a routine of keeping time aside every day to try and do it. Easier said than done of course but having a routine always helps!

    Best of luck and my best wishes are with you. Stay strong!

    Growing Positive

    1. Thank you Growing Positive, yes you are so right about routine – I try to do a short mindfulness practice first thing in the morning. And that tends to be the only session I manage all day, despite my intention to do more later.

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