Zoloft

Zoloft

Today is brought to you by the letter “Z” and I choose for it to stand for “Zoloft” as part of the A to Z Blogging Challenge.

My theme for this Challenge is depression and anxiety and all that goes with it.

Well, last day of the A to Z Blogging Challenge for April and today’s topic was chosen a month ago.  I am no longer on Zoloft, as I couldn’t handle the horrendous night sweats and am now on Prozac.  I have been on so many depression and anxiety medications over the last year that I am becoming quite an expert on meds.

IMG_9469_1I have a confession to make.  It’s my birthday and I’ve had a really great day outside in the fresh air.  I’ve tried writing this post 3 times already but don’t have much to say because I’ve switched my anti-depressant 2 weeks ago to Prozac.  So far, so good I guess.  On that note, I am going to go back outside and enjoy the rest of the early evening here in Canada.  It has been a beautiful week and so will the coming weekend.

My partner is off work this weekend so we will be busy with yard work, getting ready for summer.  I might take a few days off blogging and spend some quality time together.  If you can, try to do the same.

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What Now, Prozac?

So this post might be a bit rambling, I want to just vent about my week dealing with my depression and anxiety.  My parents returned from their winter home and haven’t asked me any dumb questions about work or my depression yet.  This is good and bad at the same time.  I am now very anxious all the time, waiting for the subject to be broached.  I see my parents just about every day  in the Spring and Summer so I know it’s just a matter of time.

I told my psychiatrist today that I can’t handle the horrendous night sweats the Zoloft is giving me.  They have been there since day one on Zoloft and only seem to be getting worse.  I wake up at least once every night, drenched in sweat and shivering because my clothes are soaked.  I thought it might go away over time but after doing some research online, I now see that is wishful thinking.

I am now going to start on Prozac tomorrow morning.  Prozac has such a bad connotation with me.  I immediately think of crazy people in a hospital when I hear that name.  Despite this negative association I have formed, I am going to give it a shot as the night sweats and food cravings have become unbearable.  Stay tuned…

Anxiety Climbing

Well, it’s the end of the week and time to reflect.  I haven’t been filling out my mood journal like I am supposed to and now I am feeling guilty.  Over the past 2 weeks I have been great, but the last day or so I have been feeling what I would call, “off”.  Not sleeping at night, feeling groggy and sick the next day.  I have that feeling you get when you are about to come down with a cold.  Scratchy throat, achy, tired, headaches and just a general malaise.  I am eating like crazy and it’s all junk food–I really can’t stay away from it.  As I write this, I am eating my 2nd Cadbury Caramilk Egg and absolutely loathe myself.  My psychiatrist says it might be the Zoloft I started 2 months ago as it is known to cause weight gain and cravings.  I’m craving hot sauce (out of nowhere), chocolate, salty foods and carbs.  I am gaining weight like crazy (after having lost over 60 lbs) and next week is going to be a shit show.

To start off, my parents whom I love dearly, are returning from their winter home next week and it’s been a few months since we’ve seen each other.  Sure, we’ve Skyped or Face Timed a lot but there has been that physical distance that has protected me from their well meaning, but dumb questions.  The questions thankfully have stopped, now my parents usually just ask my partner how I am doing.  We were actually just discussing what I want her to say when my parents start with the questions.  They have no clue about depression and anxiety and as a result, sometimes say hurtful things and ask strange questions.

I just finished the 3rd Caramel Egg and moved onto a chocolate bar.  Now I hate myself!  Stupid half priced Easter candy!!  I couldn’t resist the deals and these cravings are really tough.  I have never experienced them before, it’IMG_9776s almost like I am pregnant or something which would surprise the hell out of me AND my partner.  My energy has been low so I haven’t run, whether it’s on the treadmill or outside.  I seem to be full of excuses, maybe that’s why the scale is slowly creeping up again.

Once my parents return, I need to talk to them about my depression and anxiety and maybe about this blog.  So far it had only been my partner who I shared some posts with (only a handful and she doesn’t know the URL) but last night I cut and pasted a blog post and emailed it to my friend in hopes of her understanding what I go through a little more.  She doesn’t know the URL or anything else I’ve posted and I had been waiting to hear back from her anxiously.  We communicate on Facebook Messenger all the time so it was nerve wracking waiting for a reply overnight and into today.  I couldn’t wait any longer as a was regretting sending that email now and my anxiety was climbing.  I messaged her something about thanking her for inspiring me to make my own bird feeder (she has a cool one I copied) and she responded back, “Your Welcome,that’s what friends are for.  Speaking of inspiration, I read Your blog, my mind has been going in many different directions since.  Maybe we can talk about it sometime.”

I immediately started panicking thinking, “What does she want to talk about?”  “What does she mean when she says her mind is going in many different directions?”  I pick apart every line, every word in the message looking into it’s possible real meaning.  I’ve calmed down now, I’ve realized how crazy that negative internal dialogue is making me.  She also said she was my friend but of course I ignored that fact rather conveniently.  I asked why that makes me anxious and then immediately changed the conversation, letting her know I have ducks fornicating in my pool.  On a side note, they land in the pool every Spring and it drives my dog crazy. IMG_9766

My apprehension of my parents return next week is climbing and so is my self hatred and feelings of inadequacy. I am sure my mother will say something about my weight gain, totally unaware that I don’t want her broaching this subject.

I’m sorry for rambling on, just trying to get it all out I guess- it’s all pretty exhausting.  Thanks for listening.

Cymbalta

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Today is brought to you by the letter “C” and I choose for it to stand for “CYMBALTA” as part of the A to Z Blog Challenge.

My theme for this Challenge is depression and anxiety and all that goes with it.

I recently went through a horrible Cymbalta withdrawal.  You can read about it HERE. 

I had tapered off the Cymbalta while adding Zoloft and when I finally ran out of the Cymbalta, all hell broke loose.  If you are on Cymbalta and are thinking about switching medication, just be forewarned and you might want to read my aforementioned blog post on that matter.  medication

The reason I switched my depression medication is because it stopped working.  While being treated for my new found anxiety, my depression came back full force recently.  Cymbalta was working for a few years, kept the depression at bay for the most part but I guess your body gets used to the medication and a change is needed.

Cymbalta (duloxetine) is a selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor antidepressant (SSNRI). Duloxetine affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression.

Cymbalta is used to treat major depressive order and general anxiety order in adults.  Cymbalta is also used in adults to treat fibromyalgia (a chronic pain disorder), or chronic muscle or joint pain (such as low back pain and osteoarthritis pain).  I noticed it’s mild pain fighting skills only when I stopped taking it.  It was an effective medication for awhile and it might work well for you but be careful when you stop taking Cymbalta, especially without tapering off gradually.

 

 

 

 

Anxiety 101

My new, but dear friend just messaged me on Facebook saying she is back from the hospital after having her cervix, ovaries and uterus out.  I have been looking after her 2 cats, going over there feeding them twice a day, hoping I won’t disappoint my friend.  I hope I feed them just right.  I hope I don’t do something wrong while over there, etc…

She said she was home in the Facebook message and couldn’t find one of her cats.  OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD!

Whew! 10 minutes just passed, the cat appeared.  Oh shit, was getting very anxious.  I so don’t want to screw this up, I want to be there for my friend in her time of need.  She is a bit older than myself and doesn’t have a lot of friends.  She lives alone so it will be tough for her for the next few weeks.  She can’t do any stairs or drive so I will need to help her there as well.

I hope I don’t have a real mental breakdown in that time.  I need to keep it together for a few weeks which might be hard.  I do feel better than 10 days ago when I was in the throes of my Cymbalta withdrawal after switching to Zoloft.  I was convinced at the time there was no way I could look after someone else, let alone myself.  That has subsided.  I re-added Clonazapam to my diet.  Actually, my GP gave me a prescription for a few of them while my whole Cymbalta thing was happening and my psychiatrist was away.  Takes the edge right off but I get sleepy and don’t want to do anything which is fine I guess.  I can’t have one today, I need to go over and look after my friend tonight before she goes to bed and stuff.

medicatedSo today I am putting on a brave face and putting my big girl pants on because I am needed.

Got a Speeding Ticket Today

Got a speeding ticket today, was deserved but let me back the day up some!

My partner took today off so she could go to my psychiatrist appointment with me for support.  I needed a strong voice in my corner to express my frustration of not being able to “fix” my anxiety and now, my deepening depression because of it.  I have been slipping deeper into a depression again because of my hopelessness I feel in dealing with my anxiety.  The frustration I am having with my psychiatrist at the moment in making matters much worse.  I feel he is not helping me in the least and I have been waiting for a referral to a psychologist for quite some time.  My insurance is on my case, wanting to know what’s taking so long.  Every time they call, I just get all stressed all over again.  I just want to tell them, “Hey, I’ll call YOU when I start to feel better, how’s that?”

My psychiatrist told me the doctor he was trying to refer me to, isn’t taking anyone who deals with insurance because it requires too much of her time.  WOW!  So I guess I must wait even longer now.  I ended up seeing my GP last week in the throes of my Cymbalta withdrawal problems and because I was very worried about my frame of mind (enough said of that).  She set up a counseling session with a nurse next Monday to talk so at lease I have THAT.  My psychiatrist of course upped my Zoloft another 25 mg even though I am soaking the bed in sweat every night because of the low dose I am on now.

Very distracted, driving home, crying a bit, cop standing on side of road with a radar gun.  He got me going rather fast in a 50 kph zone so I was clearly in the wrong and I admit that.  I roll down the window and start crying again and the cop asks if everything is ok.  I reply that I’ve just come from my doctor’s office and am upset.  My partner chimes in that I suffer from depression and I’ve been having a rough time of late. He said he would be very fair and he was.  He reduced the ticket as low as possible and no demerit points.

My partner had to drive home because I was a mess.  I have no coping skills, seems they are broken and I am feeling like I am constantly walking around on egg shells. I almost feel like I am having a hard time looking after myself in a few ways.

Cymbalta Withdrawal

I feel like crap!  Day 5 off Cymbalta (on Zoloft now) and I feel nauseous, cranky, teary and shaky.  My partner left for work and I was trying to keep it together before she left so she wouldn’t worry about me. My psychiatrist is of course away and I ran out of the Cymbalta a bit early.  It wasn’t like I wasn’t supposed to stop it soon anyway.  I thought about having my regular doctor call in a prescription to the pharmacy but then I would have to just go through withdrawal again later.

I woke up in a pile of gross sweat again today, totally soaking through my PJs.  I can’t remember the last time I got more than one night out of a shirt and sleepy pants.  This symptom has been with me since I started taking the Zoloft about a month ago and isn’t letting up at all.

I feel like shit because I am ignoring my beautiful dog as well.  I have no energy to take her for a walk in the woods which she loves.  She is so easy-going and puts up with anything, I don’t deserve her.

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I’m Still Here

Woke up alive today.  That was the bad news. Oh, and there wasn’t any good news.  I was almost hoping I would succumb to some medication complication in my sleep last night so I wouldn’t have to endure day three of Cymbalta withdrawal.  My doctor has been tapering me off Cymbalta while steadily increasing a new drug for me, Zoloft.  I was down to the low 30 mg tablets and then I ran out.  It was planned to taper off but I hadn’t planned on heavy withdrawal symptoms and now have no pills left.

For the past 3 days, I have been feeling queasy, head achy, irritable and have been crying on and off most the day and night.  Sometimes when I am crying, I can feel my heart ache because I am so sad and inconsolable.  I can feel my depression gripping me tighter and tighter.   My doctor is on vacation of course and the pharmacy has an old prescription for Cymbalta on hand but won’t give it to me because it is a different dosage.  I left the grocery store in tears today, which is why I seldom venture out any more.  It was all I could do to get up and drive myself there today and now I still am suffering from the same withdrawal effects.

I have been dealing with depression more than half my life but I am supposed to be treated for anxiety mostly these days.  The anxiety is a relatively new event for me and one that has me at the end of my rope.  I’ve been off work for so many months because of my anxiety.  Work, that’s another story altogether.

After several failed attempts at returning to work (sat in work parking lot having panic attack after panic attack, unable to get in the door), I feel embarrassed , ashamed and weak.  That is why my depression has come back full force in the past few months.  I told myself that I would give this one more shot so we are changing all my meds and seeing if it helps.  So far, meh!