You may ask where I have been the past few months.
Newly married and having a pretty darn good life, you’d think I would be happy and content.
Not so much.
Along with about 19 million other Americans, I suffer with the big “D”: Depression and a good dose of Anxiety.
Other than my husband, I don’t know that many people in my life realized how bad the past few months had been for me. I was really just sad 95% of the time. But what was worst for me was the anxious thoughts I felt constantly. Those thoughts kept me from sleeping and left me worrying about everything under the sun when I was awake.
I started going to counseling, and it didn’t always seem to help. Some days it just seemed to intensify my sad feelings and anxiety by causing me to think MORE about ALLTHETHINGS.
I have been on Wellbutrin, an antidepressant, for about 5 years. Between my therapist and me, we though maybe it wasn’t working as well anymore. I may be a normal worry-wart, but even for me, this situation was becoming dire.
I talked with my PCP and she suggested another antidepressant, Lexapro. Already taking plenty of other medications due to lupus, I really did not want to add another pill to the mix, but I knew something needed to change.
I had to give it a while to see if it would work. I had some bad days in there, but I just kept telling myself to give it a little time.
About a week and a half in, it was like a lightbulb turned on in my bleak little brain. Hope. A little bit of peace. Calm. Hallelujah!
I don’t feel sad as soon as my eyes open in the morning. I can actually look forward to my day ahead. I don’t dread even the good activities and events in my life (which was really a sad way to feel).
It really just shows how much of a chemical problem this was. Literally, nothing has changed in my life. I still have the same problems and issues: Lupus, work, a long commute, a new marriage, bills etc. But now I’m able to deal with it with a clear head.
Looking back on the past few months, it makes me a little sad for Depressed Erin. I literally would go into counseling and cry for a solid hour. It would take me FOREVER to fall asleep at night with thoughts whirling through my brain. I didn’t feel any excitement for anything, and my husband would remark, “Are you okay? You just look so… sad.” I feel bad for him. I know it isn’t any fun to live with a depressed person.
So. There IS hope. I am going to continue counseling to work on some thought patterns and to just talk through THINGS (lupus, relationships, events in my past etc) and continue taking Lexapro. I’m sleeping better and am feeling motivated to do healthy things. My mind feels clearer and I calmer. I’m starting to feel a little normal again.
You do not have to be sad. You can have hope and a positive outlook for your future.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.