There comes a time to throw in the towel, wave the white flag and claim defeat. That time for me happened last week. If you haven't noticed, the blog has been unusually quiet the last few weeks and there has been a good reason. Perhaps the indications were there weeks ago and this comes of really no surprise to me. I have been experiencing some very dark days. I would say my darkest yet. I have had dark feelings and thoughts that have scared me to the core. Things I never felt before. It sat heavily in my chest and would not go away. My panic attacks increased significantly, some lasting a few days at a time. I had never experienced a severe panic attack prior to a few weeks ago, for the most part they have been quite manageable and I've been able to deal with them quite quickly. I thought when Stephen came from everything would magically go back to the way it was, but it didn't. My attacks increased, they became so severe that I became disabled.
I was scared, constantly felt like I was going to pass out and many times had the beginnings of fainting happen (ears start to ring, start to see black dots etc). I have not eaten in 3 weeks, I have lost 7lbs in 3 weeks. I have not slept, I have not been able to function. I have no motivation, I cant feel anything but this dark rock on my chest. My heart races, my head pounds, I get sweaty, I get chills, I'm in so much pain, all over it aches, my mind goes blank. I can't breath, I grasp my chest in pain, I tremble and shake with fear, I feel unreal, almost like I am not me, I feel I am being choked. All of this almost constant for 3 weeks.
I ended up in the ER 3 times for symptoms related to panic attacks though I also did have the flu and with my asthma and the flu I did need additional medication, but a lot of the symptoms were from panic. I have become dependant. I can't be by myself, I feel so weird, I can't explain it, it's almost like something will happen but I don't know what and I don't want to be alone because of that.
Last week was my breaking point. When I was so scared and panicked that I felt that deep dark feeling, I knew it was time. I had done all I could for the last 22 months (and really 4 years) acupuncture, talk therapy, change in diet etc, but when it comes down to it, death changes a person and it significantly impacted my brain. I made the call to my doctor last week and told her I had to see her that day. She thankfully understood my situation and squeezed me in, actually she stayed past her normal time just to see me because she also recognized the urgency of the situation.
I was anxious about going to this appointment. I felt defeated but I knew it was time, I needed this so I walked into her office, with husband and squirt in tow and asked to be put on medication. Of course there was no hesitation from either of us, and so a week ago I started medication for my anxiety and panic attacks. Does it bother me? Nope, it's time. When my panic attacks started to take over my life the last few weeks, I knew it was time. I could not function, I could not even care for myself let alone my daughter, it was time. I need to be a better me, my daughter deserves it and so does my husband.
I have not really noticed a huge change in a week but from talking to many, it seems it may take a few weeks to adjust. The plus side is I have not had as many side effects from this type of medication as I did last time I was on medication. Of course not feeling any change made me have a panic attack because I worried that nothing would work and I'd always feel this way, but I do hope in a few weeks I notice a difference as does my husband.
My hope is to start my ptsd program (which starts next week) and that through the program I can go down to a low dose of the medication to see how I do. We did not talk about an end plan as right now there is no end plan, right now I need to be able to function and live in the now. I cannot let life pass me by anymore, I need to live, I need to be me, I need to be the mom Bee deserves and if that meant weaning her (which has been so hard emotionally) it had to be done. It did not come when I had hoped for, but she is down to 2 feeds a day. I will say, cutting the night feeds has gone over well, she is starting to settle more so I am hopeful that maybe sleeping most of the night is in our future. I do believe it is harder on me than her, I'm the one left in tears when she wants milk and I say no. She just goes about eating her raisins.
My dark days have arrived and I am battling to see the light again. I will not let my mental illness define my life, I will live again. I do believe the medication will significantly help me. If anything, I'd like to be able to do things again, I couldn't even grocery shop without a panic attack. It's been brutal and adjusting to the medication has also been brutal. The few side effects I did have, well, the last week has been no picnic. But I know I have to be on medication at this point. So here is to hoping Prozac is my drug of choice.