A Rough Couple of Weeks

6 Sep

Y’all?  It’s been a challenging couple of weeks.  In the blink of an eye, I went from being motivated, confident, and optimistic to overwhelmed and anxious.  That’s the thing about depression and anxiety – just when you start to feel safe, it can creep back into your life.  I often wish it could be removed surgically – cut out permanently – but that’s just not how it works.

The doctor warned me that as pregnancy changed my body, medication doses would need to be adjusted.  I knew all along she was right – after all, I’d already increased the dose once before.  But secretly, I was feeling so good that deep down, I hoped we had found the perfect combination of medication and therapy.

When I started to feel edgy, I talked to my therapist and we agreed to give it a few days.  After all, sometimes a bad day is just a bad day.  It’s all-to-easy to overreact to a bad mood after you have experienced the lows that accompany a mood disorder.  I took deep breaths, reached out to friends, let my husband know how I was feeling, and spent my time living self-care.  After a week?  It just wasn’t enough.

The amazing thing is that I was actually managing the episode quite well.  All the self-care and coping skills were allowing me to function normally: to work, care for Doodle Bug, and enjoy time with friends and family.  But it took so much emotional energy that I was exhausted.  Pregnancy is tiring enough.  I didn’t need to be struggling to feel good.

My mom asked if there was anything wrong.  She suggested that life has been stressful lately and that we’ve been very busy.  She was right about one thing – we have been so very busy.  But it’s not been anything worth being overwhelmed by.  In two years of therapy, I’ve become very good at looking internally for issues.  And I knew for sure that life was good.  All the busy?  It was a good busy.  This wasn’t life getting me down.  It was the chemical imbalance in my brain.

I was sure of it…so why was it so hard to call the doctor?  I know I was afraid of the side effects.  No one wants to sign up for a week of zombie-brain and headaches.  But I think I stalled partially because, well, it sucks to have to increase meds.  I know it’s not my fault.  And I know I need the medication to correct my chemical balance like a diabetic needs insulin.  But I feel a little like I’ve let myself down, no matter how unrealistic that is.

So.  I allowed the feelings to be what they were, but I chose to ignore their narrative.  I called the doctor.

This is day one on the new full dose and I’m a little fatigued…but also feeling less tense.  I knew I did the right thing when I called the doctor, but now I also feel like it, too.

5 Responses to “A Rough Couple of Weeks”

  1. AddyB September 6, 2011 at 7:38 pm #

    LOVE this because of how you explain with such clarity and self-awareness your struggle over the decision to call the doctor & how you waited it out to see if it was something more that needed to be addressed. You are so inspiring. And strong. VERY proud of you and glad you made a decision that you know was the right one. Very proud.

    I know the past couple of weeks have been rough, but you are rocking it and taking it all in stride mama. Hold your head high. Can I be like you when I grow up?

    Love you!

    • learnedhappiness September 6, 2011 at 8:28 pm #

      Lol. Thanks, A’Driene. =) It’s a tough balancing act…I’m still figuring it out, but it gets less frightening each time.

  2. beckykid September 6, 2011 at 7:47 pm #

    I struggle with similar feelings as a SAHM, and I have a hard time expressing them without it sounding like a pity party for myself. :tosses confetti: It’s not that at all, but that doesn’t make it stink any less. Toddler butt is cute, but, it’s still a butt.

    My husband just enrolled in a local college that started today, and he’s starting a new job (promotion) next Monday. I stay home and sing ‘wheels on the bus’. It’s hard to listen to all the fun things he’s learning about, but I still want to hear them.

    For me, I think it revolves around feeling like I’m doing something worthwhile. I know I am, but… yeah.

    I get you, mama.

    • learnedhappiness September 6, 2011 at 8:30 pm #

      Thanks…I just want a little taste of the excitement and measurable success he gets. Today I did laundry, cleaned out the toddler’s closet, make a Target run, showered and dressed, fed everyone three meals and two snacks and made my bed. No small feat. But I don’t have anything shiny to show for it, you know? Normal SAHM feelings, I think.


  1. Depression and Anxiety Resources | Learned Happiness - November 17, 2013

    […] her Rainy Day Letter series.  The other letters?  Worth sitting down with.  Bring some kleenex. A Rough Couple of Weeks – On increasing medication mid-pregnancy and all the feelings that come with it. Dog Tired […]

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