Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I have always been very open about my issues with depression and anxiety.  As a child, I was always anxious, especially at night.  When Ethan was born, I became extremely overwhelmed with all the work and stress that comes with a newborn.  In your mind, you picture warm, snuggly babies that fill your heart with roses and sunshines and little puppy dogs.

Theeeeeeeeeen the baby comes home.  And doesn't sleep.  And screams in the car.  And pukes.  All. the. time.  And how the heck do you poop UP your back?  I remember when people would come over to visit and say "Oooooh, he is so precious!  I could just take him home with me!" ...and I'd think to myself "help yourself!  I'll pack his bag!"

Fortunately for me, I have always recognized these feelings weren't normal.  It took several months for me to recognize it with Ethan, and I have been blessed beyond measure with amazing doctors who never made me feel like a drama queen.

I have pretty consistently taken antidepressants since Ethan was 4 months old, with the exception of when I became pregnant with Allison.

I think anyone who suffers from depression and anxiety have moments where things are good, and moments where the bottom falls out.  The Leslie tragedy was by far the worst thing that has ever happened in my life, so it really doesn't surprise me that my hypothetical bottom fell out.  I didn't see it coming, but it didn't shock me when it did.

And again, I have an amazing doctor who is seeing me bi-weekly right now.  I take prescription Zoloft for the sadness and prescription Klonopin for when I get uber-stressed.  I'm not embarrassed.  I'm not ashamed.  If anyone wants to talk more about it, I am extremely open about it and I have been known to advise other's who seem to be struggling to get help.  It's there.  And these feelings are far more common than many think.

These past couple weeks have been tough, and I fully admit, I lost it yesterday.  I cried.  I trembled.  I threw up.  I loudly, openly GRIEVED.  I let all those emotions of immense sadness and anger out.  Sob?  You could say that.  Yell?  Yup.  I know some might read this and think "looney bin!  stat! ....but I share it because it's how I am coping.   You may be picturing me wandering the streets, muttering gibberish and yelling out craziness, and that would be inaccurate.  I appear normal.  I function normal (when around others).  I worked over 12 hours today and I had 6 very happy patients.  Patients that thanked me for listening to them.  Patients that told me I did a great job, and that even though they had to be in the hospital, they are so thankful I spent so much time with me.  I have two amazing, incredible, LOVED children that I literally dote on 24.7.  Pleasing them and seeing them smile is my main goal in life.  I have friends that love me no matter what.  I have a husband that has INCREDIBLY stood by me through all of this.  He doesn't understand it and he doesn't try to understand it, but he sees me try and he loves me anyways.

My days of "bottom dropping" (ooh, kinda sounds like some bar dance move, eh) likely aren't over.  My mood swings, crying spells, and anxiety will happen.  Again, and again, again.  But so will my moments where I literally raise my hands up to the Heavens and thank God for my amazing life.  For my amazing parents, husband, and children.  I am blessed beyond measure and I know that.

I'm struggling right now. Yes.  But I will be okay.  I have too many reasons (ahem, Ethan and Allison) to not PROMISE I will be okay.  I have a doctor who genuinely cares about my well-being.  She hands me the box of Kleenex when I cry and assures me she will ALWAYS listen to me.

I have received so many notes of support and love, and I can assure each and every one of you that I physcially felt the love you were sending me.  I have parents who send me notes of encouragment, from my dad who listened to me cry at 7 in the morning to my mom who said "I can leave work right this second to get to you.  Just say the word."  To a little baby Allie-girl who applauds when I walk into a room, to my sweet, sweet Ethan who twirls my hair around his finger and he says "I love you as big as a skyscraper, Momma."

Life IS good.  I know that.  But there is nothing wrong with getting a little help when the going gets tough.

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