Thursday, July 02, 2009

I'm Not A Doctor, But I Play One In My Life

Thanks for the comments and emails. I was secretly hoping one of you would yell at me and remind me how lucky I am and how I have this enormous responsibility to keep it together for the girls’ sake, blah blah blah. But, alas, you all are much more gentle than all that.

One of my theories about where this is coming from: I have been awful about taking the Lexapro. A while back, I decided I was Cured and would no longer need it, so I stopped taking it altogether. Cold turkey. I promptly became really Mean and Edgy and Bitchy and was forced to admit to Nicole that I stopped the pill because, despite my lack of medical degree and lack of experience in drug administration, I decided it was time to stop. She in turn got upset with me that I would try something like that without talking to her (or, I suspect, giving her a say in the decision). So I went back on the pill. Fast forward a few months and I decided to cut my dosage in half because, again, despite my lack of medical degree and lack of experience in drug administration, I decided it was time to slowly wean myself off this pill and then stop. That was going fine until recently, when I simply started forgetting to take the pill. For days in a row. You would think it isn’t too difficult to remember to take a pill once a day, but for me, apparently, it is. I will go three days without it and then finally remember. This has been going on for a while.

The thing is, the pill did work in that it really evens me out and keeps the edge at bay. But it didn’t make me feel euphoric, and that is why I hold a grudge against it. I guess I have this image that an anti-depressant is supposed to make you feel like you are pumped up like you are on Ecstasy with a bump of Special K. I thought an anti-depressant made you happy and patient as Mary Poppins and optimistic like Pollyanna and filled with Zen-like peace like Buddha. Like how just before you go under with anesthesia you feel this amazing euphoric feeling tingling through your entire body. That’s what I want, all the time. Turns out that isn’t how it works. I am giving it another chance, full dosage, and if this fog of Blah doesn’t life, I guess I need to talk to the doctor about changing pills.

In the meantime, my genius idea to snap myself out of my funk was to take myself to see My Sister’s Keeper. I will warn you: If you are a sister, a daughter or a mother (and that about covers ALL women) then you should not see this movie. I cried, literally sobbed the entire time. It’s not like this was a brilliant piece of filmmaking or anything. The film itself was not that good, and the acting was just okay, but the story line was absolutely heart-wrenching. Cancer, you are a disgusting, cruel, non-discriminating despot.

So I wake up the next day determined to distract myself by being Super Mom. I took the girls to Central Park Zoo. They laughed at the penguins and they watched the polar bears and enjoyed a walk through the hot and steamy rainforest exhibit, which I enjoyed because it made returning to the humid outside seem not so bad. The best part is later on when Nicole came home I asked Avery to tell Mommy what she saw at the zoo and she said “Pens” (penguins) and bears. And I asked what part of the body that the bear scratched with his giant paw and she remembered it was his tummy. Their little memories and minds are developing, right before our eyes.

Last night, Madeline was standing on her chair at dinner and Avery told her “Maddie, sit down!” How cute is that! I am glad to have a disciplinary assistant around. I am more than happy to play good cop/bad cop, and let Avery be the bad cop. And Madeline has started with the “Where are You’s.” Like: “Mommy, air are oo?”

Decision made: We are spending the fourth in Northampton.

Pictured above, the polar bears and the girls. That look of anxiety on their faces was bought about because I stopped pushing the stroller to snap a picture. If you can lip read then you can see clearly that Avery is saying “PUSH!”


K J and the kids said...

Well I was slightly disappointed that this wasn't on your secret blog. What can I say. I'm a stay at home mom. I get my kicks off other peoples drama :)

I'm just wondering doctor. how do you know how ecstacy and special K make you feel ? you know, clinically ? :)

Happy 4th. It will be great.

calliope said...

duuuuuuude. I wish the anti-D's were happy pills. I will say that over the others I have tried that wellbutrin gives me a bit of energy & that having more energy can make me a bit happy.

Kerry Lynn said...

I've been doing the same thing with the lexapro.

I feel like over two years post partum that I shouldn't have post partum depression anymore. I decided in February that I was going to wean off it (I can't stop cold turkey because the withdrawl symptoms for me are unbearable...I can't even forget to take it for more than a day or I am non functional). I went from 15 to 10 to 5 very gradually. I did ok on 10 but 5 made me feel bad again. I stayed on it though until a month ago I finally talked with my doctor. She told me to STOP MESSING WITH MY MEDS!!! And added wellbutrin to the mix. I just called back again today because I'm not feeling any better and she said to give it a couple more weeks and then we'll up the dose.

Denise said...

I read the book, but refuse to see the movie. The ending in the book sucked. I heard that they changed the ending in the movie.
I recently started taking Lexapro against my better judgement. I was taking celexa and loved it. But... Now that they adjusted my dosage on the Lexapro, it seems to be working. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I am an on again off again reader so maybe I don't know all but what I do see is someone who (in the words of U2)..still hasn't found what they're looking for.

That doesn't mean you don't appreciate what you have because it's obvious you do. You can live both ways. Love what you've created and nurtured but still yearn for more?

What is that more? Something for you (not for you with the kids; not for you with Nicole; not for you with your family; just for you!)

And guilt does not have to be attached to it! Live that life you want - just adjust it based on your current situation. Now is the time, not one day you wake up in the future and say, "I wish, oh how I wish!"

Anonymous said...

The thing with the pills?
Don't wean yourself.
They are designed to even you out, and they do the job, that's why you feel like you are fine and stop taking them/reduce them. No antidepressant will make you feel euphoric, so forget that.

Shelli said...

I had to get one of those pill thinggies that have the days of the week on them. I loAd it up each Sunday. The lexapro keeps my edge off, too.

So nu? When ya wanna hang?

Anonymous said...

Hi there. You know the medication is really only useful if it gets you motivated enough to go to therapy. Don't believe the drug company hype. SSRI's will help with vegetative symptoms ie get one off the couch, but you have to do the rest. I would love to be in New York for the wealth of therapists, and I think you may be well experienced in therapy (?). I just wanted to say that relying on drugs may not give you the best outcome- & you & all yr girls do deserve the best outcome.

Good luck with it.


Anonymous said...

sorry if my comment sounds overly opinionated!! L.

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