I had planned on writing about all of the intentions that I made at the beginning of the year, and how well I was doing with them, but instead, I’m sitting here typing, after just taking my first dose of Celexa (ten milligrams), and reading all of the side effects that could occur. (FYI, if you are anxious, I don’t recommend reading all of the possible side effects that could occur with a drug; your anxiety will blossom like a Venus flytrap, and demand to be fed. I am prepared for some side effects, and will just have to be surprised for the rest of ’em). My doctor has prescribed the antidepressant, after I explained to her that I have had three anxiety attacks in the last six weeks, and that I want to feel better. I have been fighting depression this year by pretending that I was all right, and denying the symptoms. My last experience with the antidepressant family was about ten years ago, with Lexapro. I had a positive experience with the drug, except for a twelve pound weight gain, which I eventually lost.
These days, anxiety attacks take place when I have something physically wrong with me, like pain that I can’t explain away – my doctor has diagnosed me with PTSD, which she says stems from all of the loss of family members that I’ve experienced in a relatively short period of time. (Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with major recurring depressive disorder – I took a peek at my diagnosis, then looked it up in the DSM-IV; I already knew that I was depressed, but I still wanted to read the official designation.)
At this stage of the game, there are a few other factors that are at play in my decision to go back on antidepressants. This year has kind of sucked in that I had to go through a pretty painful back injury, as well as chronic tension headaches (which I understand from reading can be a result of depression, as these started before I was injured). The last time I was diagnosed with depression, I had the same kind of chronic headache, which lasted for months; I was sure that I was a goner, and paid a couple of teary visits to my doctor, before my mind was put at ease (somewhat).
I’m also going to start therapy again, with a new therapist. My previous therapist helped me so much, but I’m looking for a new perspective – I have two names, so it’s just a matter of picking up the phone and making an appointment, and then my adventures in Therapyland (the sequel) can begin (again).
If you have never experienced depression, or know someone who has it, let me just tell you that it’s not what you might think it is. It’s not what I thought it was – it’s not romantic, and it’s not something that you can just shake off with a good night’s sleep. It’s a sneaky little bastard that creeps up on a person, and changes the way you feel and the way you think. It’s funny – once I decided to acknowledge that I needed help again, I actually felt better – still depressed, but taking steps to climb out of the hole, so that’s a start.