Posts Tagged ‘Effexor’

Traumatized, I tell you.

Friday, March 26th, 2010

So the p-doc now thinks that my body was so traumatized by the Effexor withdrawal I went through last year that now the signal of lowering my dosage of SSRI is triggering it to go bat shit crazy all on its own.  So it’s not the Luvox.  It is me.  My own sweet body, making me dizzy and nauseous, and plummeting levels of certain chemicals, and getting my brain to electrocute me.  Great.

I’m not sure how much I entirely buy it yet (he’s suggested some things to try in order to prove or disprove it).  I’m also not entirely sure which verdict I’m pulling for.  Would feel like a bit of an idiot if it’s my own chemistry sabotaging me and putting me through all of this.  But on the plus side, I might be able to get clear of the Luvox more easily.  And it’s the option that doesn’t involve me vomiting all day as a result of the testing.  Also, I would have the MOST POWERFUL BRAIN EVER.  Which is kind of cool on its own.

But damn, if it can affect my neurotransmitter levels that strongly, then somebody tell me what I need to do to kick this whole depression thing and just get my brain doing that for me instead.  Also, I would like some weight loss.  And x-ray eyes.

Had another night of crappy sleep last night combined with my now-patented 4 or 5 am awakening.  I literally let out a “You’ve got to be fucking kidding me” today when the morning alarm went off.  And I was still fully awake to hear it.  This says something, as unless I am driving or playing video games, I am not naturally a big swearer.  I say scathing things, like “crap” and “drat.”  I reserve the right to moan and whine about the frequent awakening a little, as I do not have babies yet.  I’m sure all of the new moms are rolling their eyes a little, but can probably sympathize.

(except that if you’ll read above, I’ve patented it now.  So you’ll owe me.)

The Wellbutrin continues to make a positive contribution aside from the sleep thing.  According to my mind, this is apparently cause for much celebration, followed by an instant of panic that I may be put back to work, followed by some worrying about trying to deal with that side of things and the decisions surrounding it, followed by the rationalization that if it causes so much panic still I’m probably not yet well enough to go back, followed by a moment of relief, followed by another moment of panic that they might send me anyway, followed by lunch.

Mmmm.  Lunch.

Please tell me that you have that stomach line too…

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Sometimes the fake “words” in those little prove-you’re-human-and-not-a-spam-computer text boxes amuse me.  Got “vichinga” yesterday, which sounds to me so very, very much like a pet name for female body parts that I may start using it.   Or maybe as one of those “Ha – gotcha!” kind of phrases.  Like “Yo mama’s so fat she probably needs medications to assist in managing her cholesterol!  Vichinga!”  or  “Your husband’s so lazy that there appears to be a minor buildup of recyclable products under your sink! Vichinga!”

Also nice guys do sometimes finish last.  Mostly in yo mama battles.

Day two of the Great Wellbutrin Countdown.  I am happy to report that there are no hives yet, though I have become excessively aware of everywhere on my body that is minorly itchy, at all times.  Incidentally, that line at stomach level, where you fold when you sit down with bad posture?   Very itchy.

I filled out the Anxiety and Depression inventories in my “Feeling Good Handbook” by David D. Burns today (the one with the admittedly very famous in the field man on the cover who looks very much like Mr. Rogers’s nicer, more syrupy neighbour).  The depression one is sort of like this.  They say that it can help to do that regularly, since it puts a definitive number on how you’re feeling.  I don’t know how much weight the actual number itself holds, since the test is pretty basic, but it does make it easier to make comparisons.

I haven’t kept track of all of my scores over time.  Don’t remember exactly where I was when I first started (early 30’s, maybe?).  At one point earlyish into the process, not too long after being diagnosed and pulled from work, I was a 42(anxiety) and 28(depression).  Later on after doing a lot of my self-help readings and trying yoga, etc. I was a 28 and 20.  Then 38 and 16 on the Wellbutrin the first time around (it’s known for making people a little tightly wound).  When the Effexor hit, I was too depressed to even think about answering the questions (it would have been off the charts) and on the Prozac I was too anxious to worry about it.  Today I scored a 42 and 40.  The anxiety checklist goes all the way up to 100, but the highest possible score on the depression checklist is 45.  Note that I tend to under-estimate my symptoms if I’m undecided.  Note also the difference between where I was when they officially decided this was bad enough that I could not work anymore, and where I am today.  Note that higher is BAD on this test.  Sigh.

Yo body’s so cracked that you get SADDER on antidepressants!

Vichinga.

Of Violence and Baked Goods

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

So, pardon the lack of communication lately, but as mentioned I’ve been weaning off of the Effexor since it seemed to make things so much worse, and OH MY LORD is the Effexor withdrawl making me crazy.   And I had thought the consistent dosage was problematic!

I was in the grocery store today, with my cart parked in an open area while my husband and I were deciding on something or other, and some woman pushed by me with the bitchiest, most insulting, most accusatory, exasperated “excuse me” I have ever heard.  And sweet heavens, did I want to PUNCH HER IN THE FACE.  One has to understand that I am all of 5’3” tall, size 2, and an absolute heartfelt pacifist.  I quite literally apologize to bugs when I squish them in my house rather than taking them outside.  And then I feel guilty about it.  But damned if I didn’t want to jump her in the laundry aisle.  I’m fairly sure that had she come back to get in my face, I quite sincerely would have started a produce-area brawl.  …Just a bit out of character for me.

(normally I only brawl near the frozen foods)

My poor husband had the luxury of being with me all day today and joining me on the crazybus.  I’ve been ferociously irritable, and very, very mentally vacant (which mostly means that I know I’m really mad. …I’m just not sure why).   We split up for a moment during the grocery excursion, and I literally had to go back and ask him what one of the TWO whole items I had gone to get was.  …Then proceeded to forget what the other one had been by the time I got to the appropriate area.  I eventually remembered, since I knew it had to be something nearby, but it was frigging difficult, let me tell you.  In the span of about an hour my mental faculties went from reasonably strong to sea cucumber.  Except at least sea cucumbers seem to know what they’re doing down there.  I’m being BEATEN OUT by sea cucumbers.

Oh…and the cravings.  I want to eat.  Anything.  Everything.  And I don’t just want to eat, I want to OVEReat.  Until I’m bursting.  I want to eat until I physically cannot stuff anything else in my stomach, and then start looking sideways at my ears and nostrils, like maybe something edible would fit in there… We passed by the bakery section today to get some tortillas, and I literally stopped dead in front of a package of double chocolate cookies.  Two dozen double chocolate cookies.  And I wanted to eat every single one.  Right there.  I know that this is not good for me.  I realize that rationally I have worked very hard to get myself down to my current weight, and do not want to lose all of that progress in one or two months of sweet, sweet indulgence.  But I also REALLY, REALLY want to eat those cookies.  I was trying to explain my dilemma to my husband (who was trying to be supportive, but really just wanted to exit the store now.  …Preferably without a wife suddenly 24 cookies larger).

“Something is seriously messed up with me right now.  I just really, REALLY badly want to eat that whole package of cookies and punch somebody.”

A moment later, still standing in front of the cookies, as my will is strong enough not to have put them in my cart or mouth, but not quite strong enough to leave them, I am asking with pleading tones if it wouldn’t be justifiable to get the cookies, since I was so good and didn’t punch anyone.

No,…I didn’t really think so either.

(I did not get the cookies.  …But I still want them.  A lot.  Distractingly so, really.)

So life, it seems, is going to be a bit of a roller coaster for a while.

And my husband may or may not come home from work next week to find me stuffing cookies in my ear.

The Good, The Bad, and the Sort of Homely

Monday, August 17th, 2009

The Effexor doesn’t seem to be doing much good for me.  …Either that, or MAN would I be messed up right now without it.  To be honest, I really think it’s made me significantly worse, as these past few weeks have been the lowest I can remember, with no definable external reason.  The couple of friends who can handle it (sort of) I’ve mentioned this to when I’ve seen them.  It’s a difficult thing to explain to people who haven’t been there, and I worry that even with the best of intentions, it will be difficult for them to grasp accurately.  I’m sure that if our roles were reversed I would try to be super supportive and sympathetic, but I don’t know that in the back of my brain there wouldn’t be the tiny thought that if they just tried a bit harder, or did a bit more, or [insert various other possibilities here] they could maybe improve things.  …Or that if they REALLY wanted to, they could do this or that or the other thing.  I don’t know that I would be able to fully believe it if I hadn’t gone through this stuff myself.  Heck, I AM going through it and there are moments when I almost don’t believe it myself.  Seriously?  I’m lying on the floor?  On the floor??  This is my activity??

It’s a tricky thing how much to tell different people.  There’s still a lot of misperception out there about depression, and about the differences between capital D depression and extreme bouts of sadness or listlessness.  I am on the floor because everything seems hopeless and this seems like the only place to be right now – extreme sadness.  I am on the floor and I CANNOT SEEM TO MAKE MYSELF GET UP FOR PETE’S SAKE WHY WILL YOU NOT FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING GOOD JUST GET UP AND WHY IS THERE APPARENTLY NO PROPER PUNCTUATION IN MY INTERNAL MIND VOICE??? – capital D Depression.

As a nice added bonus to the Effexor, apparently the withdrawal effects are known for being particularly severe.  I was delayed a few hours from my usual schedule in taking my pills one day last week, and I spent the ENTIRE REST OF THE DAY either gagging over the toilet or lying as still as possible on my sofa in order to avoid gagging over the toilet.  The whole frigging day.  Sheesh.  No joke – all I did was watch whatever happened to air on the TV (as it got to a point that it really wasn’t worth the movement to change the channel), and moan like a drunken hippo.  Out loud.  With no one to hear me.  On the plus side, I’ve become very punctual.

Our cats and ourselves are settling into the new house.  There is still much unpacking to do, but it’s very livable now, and looks pretty much mostly like a real home.   I am loving that.  Our male cat has been exploring every nook and cranny with endless curiosity (which was not surprising).  Our girl stayed in the bedroom for a week after he was already off and running, then emerged yesterday as the Queen of the World.  Apparently she too has been doing some reflecting on her formerly passive ways.  Her strategy seems to involve a lot of hissing, swatting, and complete lack of negotiation.  Maybe I should try that at work.  It does seem to be impressively effective thus far.

We’ve had a couple groups of friends up to see the new place too, which was refreshing.  It rarely seemed worth it to have people over to the apartment when there were more spacious/nice/clean/centrally-located/what-have-you places to be.  I think at heart I secretly love entertaining.  Or at least using small and interesting dishware.  That may be it too.  No worry over turning too Martha Stewart though.  I made up the guest room (we have a GUEST ROOM!  How cool is that??  (The answer, my friends, is very cool.  Very cool indeed.)) with quite clean but excessively wrinkled sheets.  Sort of a modeled after a ball of aluminum foil kind of look.  I am going to go with the explanation that that’s the cooking-product-related look that we were going for with the décor as a whole.  You’re more likely to stop by and find that I’m raising giraffes than ironing sheets.