Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Sane? Depressed and Overwhelmed, Instead.

Hello Friends:

I am choking on the irony of having posted "Apparently I am getting more sane ..." and then having the week I just had. No, nothing 'bad' happened. No illnesses or accidents or any of that. It is, as usual, the depression that comes out of nowhere. People see me, notice I am down, and say "What's wrong?" I want to say "Where have you been for the last two years (or ten or thirty)? Do you see the list of diagnoses at the top of this page? That's what's wrong. Do I need more?"

People are surprised. "But you were doing better." I want to pummel them over the head. "So that means I never have another bad day, or week, or month, then? Progress is always straight up, eh?"

Grumpy, down, overwhelmed, sad, and cranky. What a great combo. Oh yeah, I have a migraine, too, with that wonderful nausea that goes with it. I'm blaming this one on the Celexa. But I'm blogging, and I'm going to count this as my "functional" success of the day. Whoo.

I can, however, see a trigger for my current state of bleh. I went from anxious, to overwhelmed, to unable to cope, to depressed. It is a pattern I am familiar with, but before this last year I don't think I would have seen it quite this clearly.

What I think set me off was a series of health related stuff. Again, nothing bad, just stuff that is starting to need attention. I've been overweight for decades, and was able to get away with it because I was young.  I'm not young anymore, and my last physical shows me on the border of having some cardiac issues; my good cholesterol is going down, my lipids are no good, my triglycerides are on the line. Doc is saying that if the niacin does not work, I'll probably have to start a statin drug. This is ridiculous. I'm too young and the wrong gender to be on Lipitor. Yes, that's a stupid way to think, but here I am thinking it.

But taking all those supplements she has prescribed is hard. My OCDs are mostly contamination based. Pills are a daily struggle. I have seven total to deal with, given the mind meds and the supplements. It's too many. I showed her all the bottles and said I couldn't promise to be med compliant with all this stuff, and she had to eliminate some of them. She didn't. So I have the same lineup of bottles to deal with every morning, and that means some mornings I turn away from them in defeat.

So I have to lose weight. Which means exercise for real. I can do it, but it takes an inhaler to do it without practically passing out, since I have exercise induced asthma. And I'm afraid of the inhaler. I've been using it, but it makes me feel terrible. I need a different prescription. That means calling and getting one. And then finally picking it up and using it. Inhaling weird stuff. And then I'm still supposed to have mental resources left to get on the treadmill?

And then there are the flexibility and strength exercises. I have those from my somatic therapist. She at least agreed when I said she could give me three and no more. So there they are, another thing to do every day, added to a list that I can't handle as it is.

Include food. Food, which is one of my real trigger issues regarding OCD. Shopping, cooking, and then cleaning up. I can do one of those, not three. But losing weight and eating right means planning meals, shopping, keeping the pantry stocked, using leftovers, etc. etc. I can't even bear to think about it. My mind is not dealing with planning, and I don't have the energy to stand in front of the stove and cook.

Okay I could continue with the depressive ranting. But the picture is pretty clear. I am trying, really trying, to get better. It is never good enough. Never fast enough. There is always more more more to do more to try. Pressure. And then when I get some random physical chronic illness it'll be my fault.

There's my whiny post. I'll try to get something less self-indulgent next time.

Your Hostess With Neuroses

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expwoman said...

That sounds like a tough week! The pervasive sense of there always being more to do used to paralyze me, in part because I assumed I was defective, and inadequate. If I was really together, I'd have it all fixed, right now. I see a woman who has gotten through a gauntlet of health stuff, and I see that as courageous rather than lacking. OCD can suck the life out of a person--maybe no one in your life can affirm you in this struggle, but I will. If there's any way you can get treatment for the OCD, I would encourage you to do that. It IS possible to overcome OCD fears.

The Blue Morpho said...

Hey expwoman - Thanks for reading and for the support.

I've had specific treatments for the OCD for many years, and I've had a lot of successes. My compulsive checking is way down, doorknobs are much less scary, I can walk down sidewalks and not have to cross the street when there is a dog coming the other way, etc. etc. So there has been plenty of OCD relief.

Still, there are so many issues related to the contamination, and how that is bound up in the CPTSD stuff. Some of this comes from experiencing actual physical violation as well as repeated childhood emotional abuse, so it is tough to comb out the major drivers behind the symptoms. My tdoc is an anxiety/OCD specialist, and has offered to work specifically on the OCD issues one at a time, but we both realize that could mean my not having the energy to deal with other issues like the social anxiety, flashbacks, depression, panic attacks, generalized anxiety, and other crap. He does not want to focus too much of my internal resources in one direction, since none of the other areas can be left to themselves for a while, either.

So I'm working on all of it at once, making smaller gains in each area and trying to leverage upwards over time. It is working, but it is also difficult. And depression being what it is, makes it hard to see the good stuff in the midst of the bad. It will move on, and I'll get some energy again. But in the mean time, well, I'm depressed.

Marj aka Thriver said...

I have a similar response to people's judgment and reactions to how I'm doing. I get very impatient and annoyed with it sometimes. I feel for you.

You know, I never thought about that pattern before. I think that can describe a cycle I've been in many times before, too. Thanks for mentioning that.

I don't have any answers, but I do understand and empathize with a lot of what you're going through. I hope ((((((((safe hugs)))))) are okay. Take gentle care.

The Blue Morpho said...

Hello Marj aka Thriver: Thank you very much for the supportive comments. Yes, I'm okay. I know - none of us really have answers - but it is always nice to know that others have similar issues. We are not alone in trying to figure it all out.

Andy said...

The cycle is a bad one, it's good that you have the self-awareness to be able to see it. I suppose the hope is that seeing the cycle is one step on the way to intervening in it, but that of course may be some time in coming, and even if it doesn't happen the awareness itself is useful.

The Blue Morpho said...

Andy - thanks for commenting. Yes, awareness is useful. Awareness does not equal cure, but I do think it helps with that 'what the heck is wrong with me' sensation. I have a pretty good idea what is wrong, but fixing it is complex :)

Amy said...

I like the "safe hugs" idea. Here's a bunch from me:

((((((Amy hugs)))))))

wonder woman said...

Loved the part about cooking -- where you noted I can do one, but not all three. That's so me..I was giggling because I can totally relate.

Thanks for making me smile.

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