Antidepression Quandry

For the past several months, I’ve been actively trying to wean myself off of my antidepressants. It’s been going quite well, which is why I’ve been keeping it up. Slow and steady, as I am in no rush. I just feel like it’s time to get off them, and since I know from previous experience how difficult that can be, I figured I would take my time, and just aim for an eventuality. I don’t really want to be taking them for the rest of my life, if I can help it.

I’d forgotten how physically sick I would feel when I changed the consistency of taking them, so I went back to super steady, and made incremental changes as I went along. I keep forgetting when I last took one, so sometimes I still don’t feel great, even though my weaning period has been going on for a long time.

As far as depression goes, however, I’m still feeling pretty balanced. That, for me, has been the main thing to keep an eye on. Even when PMS-ing, though, I’m thus far able to differentiate between when I’m legit upset by something versus weeping unnecessarily hard over a commercial on television.

I mean, I have a new TV now, so everything looks splendid, but still…I can tell when I’m being hormonally over-sensitive, most of the time. So that’s good.

I’m wondering now, though, if I should start taking them regularly again, even just at the lowest dose. I find my ability to focus on one thing at a time is suffering a lot lately, and it occurred to me this morning that it might actually be due to taking myself off antidepressants. It was easier for me to direct my focus when I had something to take the edge off. Is it something I can learn to do for myself, if I keep working my way off of them? I actually don’t know. I’m not entirely sure I ever could. It’s fine on the surface – things still get done, and some of them even get done well. I write everything down now, anyway, because I have trouble remembering things since I started on these MS meds. So keeping track in alternate ways helps me, and is a habit I’ve developed anyway. But it’s frustrating on the inside. I feel almost overwhelmed sometimes, and more often now than I used to. Again, maybe I can learn to focus better, anyway.

But maybe not.

The other point in favour of going back on them more regularly is how, like…not exactly over-sensitive, but I’m having a lot more anxiety now, and as such I am getting much less sleep. I’m constantly thinking about things, and going over things in my mind. That on top of the usual MS fatigue I’ve been experiencing the past few years is making it harder for me to NOT break down and cry about even the smallest things.

Again, maybe in time I’ll learn how to quiet my mind naturally and get better rest. But maybe I won’t. Maybe I never really could. I’m not actually sure.

For now, I’m not really going to make any decisions. I just started thinking about it this morning, and since I’m definitely PMS-ing (bring me salt!) right now, I may as well wait until I at least have whichever faculties I usually have about me again, and go from there!

Advertisements

Another Busy Weekend Ahead

Alright! Had a huge long bout of insomnia last night (as in, more than usual) so am feeling a tad rough and headache-y today, but have managed to be at least a little bit productive at the start of my day!

Cancelled both Guinness World Record attempts I’d been approved to make – Largest Online Photo Album of Animals (my plan was to highlight the Toronto Zoo’s residents to help raise awareness as well as give zoo-goers a place to showcase their photos), and Longest Chain of Paper Hearts. My plan for that one was to get a Mind Reels booth at Toronto Comicon in March, and coincide that event with a launch of my children’s book about hearts. I wanted to get visitors to our table to help cut out paper hearts all weekend, and assemble them into a huge chain together at the end. The attempt/book launch was to tie in with other ideas we have for a con table, rather than be a stand-alone event in and of itself.

Speaking of which, I really need to find an artist one of these days, to help flesh out a few things with me.

At any rate, neither attempt was ever likely to happen, at least not any time soon, so I’ve scratched them off my long and vague To Do list. As well, I cancelled a subscription, which will save me a bit of money, and declined this month’s feature title in the Disney movie club.

Another packed weekend is staring me in the face, but at least I’m feeling physically better than the past couple of weeks. Not much, mind you, because #nosleep, but better nonetheless.  Do not be surprised if I don’t post much or at all over the next few weekends, actually.  Maybe next month sometime my schedule will go back to something normal-ish (for me).  I’ll be glad when I’m not writing this anymore and have time to focus on different, more useful (for me) writing, I think!  But if it gets me into the habit of writing every day, regardless, then it will have not been a complete waste, at least!

Will be sending out invites to start casting the next radio play soon – probably early next week, if not later today. I want to do it before the end of the month, though I am frustrated with our inability to go live with anything.

I’m frustrated with a lot of things.

I’ve taken to envisioning shooting people lately. Just random people who piss me off. It feels a bit like a cathartic release to imagine it – firing little rage bullets at the guy wearing his backpack on a crowded subway, or strolling along on the wrong side of the sidewalk (walk on the right, pass on the left, people), or driving too fast on residential streets in particular. Not in a they-deserve-to-die kind of way, but in a releasing of anger from inside of me. I mean, we’re all going to die whether we deserve it or not, but my imagination is more along the lines of a mental slap in the face, but more violent, and thus more satisfying. I never picture it as a hail of bullets spraying everywhere, either. I’ve often maintained that a gun is the weapon of a coward, but at least in my mind each shot is deliberate, and focused and up close. It’s personal. Each individual knows they are my target, and sometimes I even tell them why, like that scene in Dogma when Matt Damon wanted to smite everyone in the boardroom because they didn’t bless him when he sneezed. Only in my case, because everything happens in my mind, I keep my mouth shut and move on with my day, but carry less anger around as I do so.

I’m so completely not a violent nor confrontational person in practice, but the scenarios which play out in my head are everything I’m not. Which I guess is a good way to be, really. Much better than the opposite, anyway.

I managed to fall asleep for 45 minutes or so this morning, I think, before my alarm went off. Naturally, I had a really stressful and emotional dream during that time, to ensure I awoke even more exhausted than necessary for a Friday. I was moving slow, left late, but still got to work on time. The rest of the week I’ve been leaving early and getting to work late, so even that much went better this morning than it has been the rest of the week.

I just…need to get through the weekend without being even more of a mess by Monday morning!

Picture Book

I haven’t slept much the past few nights.

My mind and emotions about work are all over the map, and I end up laying awake churning through it all.  Panic, confusion, despair, anger, fear, sadness, hurt, resignation…it all spins around inside my head and heart and I can’t settle it enough to get much rest.

It’s very draining.

And it’s the weekend, so it’s not like I can do anything practical about any of it, anyway.  None of what’s spinning inside me is real yet – it’s all just hypothetical scenarios running through my exhausted brain and making it all feel more desperate than ever.  Tomorrow is Monday, so it’ll all become real then.  But for now, it’s completely out of control.

Well, almost completely.

I’ve been trying to keep busy while I’m awake. It’s easier to distract myself  with actual activities.  I still spend more time than I’d like to in tears, but when I actually manage to focus on something else, it’s easier to maintain that focus for longer than I can when I am trying to sleep.

Yesterday I wrote the first draft of a potential picture book for kiddos.  I had a ridiculous amount of fun doing it, and spent some time afterward still trying to think in rhythm and rhyme.  At one point I reminded myself of that scene in The Princess Bride.  You know the one.

“No more rhymes, now, I mean it!”

“Anybody want a peanut?”

Classic.

Anyway, the point is, writing took my mind off my current situation, and the fact that it was fun made it even better.  I was remembering a poetry unit I helped teach a grade 8 class when I was practice teaching back in school.  I got to do haiku with them, and some of the kids decided we should try to have whole conversations in haiku, and it was hilarious! They got really good at it, too.  So last night, by the time I was getting dinner for the fur babies, I was thinking in rhyme and reading the draft of the book to them (mostly Brody, but Piper got draft #2 read to her a few times already today), and I was smiling instead of crying.  The feeling didn’t last, of course, but it definitely helped.

Now I’ve been awake since 4am, but I’ve walked Brody a couple of times, had something to eat, and completed the book’s second draft.  I liked it last night, and love how it’s coming together today.  I got the rhyme pattern worked out, and established the number of syllables per line.  I feel like there are still a couple of more awkward-sounding spots – lines that don’t flow as smoothly as I’d like – but overall I am quite pleased with how well it’s coming together.

My initial plan for the book’s structure was a bit different, and even as I was assembling it last night I wasn’t sure which way I’d go with it, but a lot of it pretty much wrote itself, so I’ve decided not to mess with that.  Plus, it’s fun to read out loud.  I just have to tweak it a bit more to get it to flow better.  But I already have some picture ideas in my head and I feel like, all things considered, it’s coming along very well, and has provided an unexpected and wonderful distraction for my otherwise anxious mind!