Posts Tagged ‘friends’

The Good Life

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Greetings from nature!  …And by nature, I mean very swank “cottage” owned by friend’s wealthy father.  I think it still qualifies though.  I’m sure somewhere outside the vast and gorgeous kitchen there must be rabbits and squirrels and stuff.  Or at least a bug or two.  …Do bugs come with expensive granite tops?

I jest.  Kind of.  Sort of.  Okay, not really.  But we are near the water, and the air smells amazing, so I think I can suffer through the luxury somehow.  I know.  I’m terribly selfless.

On the plus and down side, Friend-Who-May-Or-May-Not-Like-Me wasn’t able to come up.  Which if he really is okay with me now is a shame, because he’s a nice guy and fun to be around.  But if he isn’t quite okay with me is a relief.  I’m calling it a victory.

And yes, there are four of us currently sitting in the living room, three one laptops and one playing video games on the big screen tv.  In the middle of the afternoon.  At a cottage.  With a gorgeous day outside.  We’ll be outside lots too, and there’s a fantastic lake-scented breeze coming in, but yes, I acknowledge some of the irony of travelling hours to do this.  I never claimed not to have rather geeky tendencies at times.  We should probably just go ahead and learn Klingon.  We’re not fooling anybody.

A quick conversation with a friend of mine who has also struggled with depression also confirmed my already-huge resolve to make a change in psychiatrist.  His guy, like, does therapy and stuff.  And discusses lifestyle changes.  And is willing to fill out paperwork.  And chooses medications based on specific symptoms and reactions to other drugs rather than chronologically.  And, you know, takes notes, and records what he’s prescribed him from time to time.  I’m tempted to see if I could get in to see him even just for a one-type consultation so that I’d have a plan of which medications might be a good fit for me if I ever decided to go that route again.  If I actually thought there was some reason to hope for a better result, I might even be willing to consider it.  …Eventually.  …Once I’m starting to go senile and my memory of the last year and a half has failed.

I should probably comment eventually on the SAM-e (aka SAMe, aka A-Adenosyl methionine) as well, as it actually seems to be doing what it claimed to, and though there were a few side effects to start, they seem to have faded down now.  I know that some people do have significant side effects from the SAM-e, but it seems that I, whose body seems to generally roll over in close proximity to any medication, am not one of those people.  Score!  I’m just now getting up to the suggested minimum starting dose of 200mg/day (which is still only half of the suggested minimum therapeutic dose), and it should take another week or two to know what this dose is doing, but so far so good.  Of course, as with everything else, it’s tough to tell sometimes whether changes are the result of the pills or of other natural life changes, but I am finding that I’ve got WAY more energy than I did.  And energy means motivation, and capability, and other good things.  Still have the occasional meltdown, but I’m hopeful.

Of course, I’m one of those people who gets quasi-euphoric from a cup of coffee, so I guess it shouldn’t be surprising that feeling slightly hyper all the time has improved my mood.  But it’s pretty great.

In addition, we on the way up here, we passed a vending machine that sold bait.  With a great big, very fecal-looking worm on the front.  Now who’s mood wouldn’t be improved by that?

Where do ruffled introverts go when they stay in the hospital?

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

The husband and I are heading up to a friend’s cottage this weekend for most of the coming week.  I like to tentatively lay out to-do lists for the remaining days in situations like these.  I find it reassuring to see that I still have plenty of time to get done what needs to get done before we leave, and know that I’ve got a handle on things.  Ambiguous needs stress me out a little.  Probably because I’m not the type of person who will go into that situation by doing the ambiguous but needful stuff first.  I’m more likely to be doing more entertaining things until the last possible moment.  At any rate, we’re getting close to departure now, which means I’ve entered the stage of revising my to-do lists so as to put as much as possible tomorrow rather than today.  This also is a common feature of this type of time.  My schedules tend to be a little front-loaded on the more enjoyable activities. =)

It should be a good week.  I’m never 100% certain with this particular grouping of people.  They were good friends of my husband’s before we met, and have gradually become better friends of mine, but we’re not quite all the way there yet.  Sometimes I feel liked, and included, and have a lot of fun.  Sometimes I feel a little left out.  They all share some common interests and activities that I share, and some that I can’t really relate to or participate in (online games, etc. that I don’t play).  So it generally depends on what the current topics of discussion are.  It probably doesn’t help that when I was first getting to know them I inadvertently rubbed one of them the wrong way by reminding him of somebody he didn’t like.  And I get totally awkward when I pick up that somebody’s not liking me.  Awk-ward.  I’m not the type of person who can just let that roll off them yet.

But we’re okay now.  …Probably.  I think.

Saw the new therapist again the other day.  She seems quite good.  In addition to the daily walking, and other activities, and goal-setting, and journaling, and independence-building, this week she’s assigned me the task of going into as many different stores or other establishments as I can and asking as many obvious questions as I can, building up to the stupidest questions I can think of.  I’m not a big fan of appearing incompetent, or of asking other people for help, so the combination is probably a good one.  …Even if it does mean that yesterday I had to ask the Starbucks people what I should order if I want a steamed milk (turns out it’s “steamed milk”).  Actually, I believe what I wanted was a tall, no-whip, hazelnut crème, one pump.  But who am I to tell her that.

I think I’m going to have some fun with this while we’re away.  Too much blatant stupidity is rough in a smallish area where people know who I am, but out in the middle of cottage country…  Heh heh heh.  “So…Do you know who drains the lake in the winter?”  The trick is that I’ll have to make them realistic enough that they think that I’m serious.  I know that there’s at least a grocery store.  Suggestions for grocery-themed dumb questions welcome.

Also, do any of you know where they keep the internet when I’m not using it?

What’s a decade or two between friends?

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

So first off, holy crap is every week an eternity in blogland.  I feel like I’ve been out of touch for YEARS (how are you?  Any kids?  Are you still working at that place doing that thing?).  On the plus side, that also means I’ve apparently known you folks for centuries.  We’ve practically weathered the dawn of time together.  I miss the dinosaurs. Don’t you?

Apologies for the lack of communication lately.  I blame a combination of factors and Nicholas Cage.  …Not because he was involved in what I’ve been doing in any way.  Just because he looks kind of shifty, and I feel better having something to pin on him.

As has become customary, subtle parts of my personality are shifting with the current medication changes.  It’s sort of an eerie experience if you haven’t been through it.  The most recent increases to my Wellbutrin came with anxiety on a level that defies all logic.  Near-hysterics-because-I-can’t-find-the-instruction-manuel-for-our-barbeque kind of defying.  The kind in which I sit there in the moment, watching it all happen from inside my head, with a puzzled wtf expression on my mental face.  I rather firmly requested that the dose go back down.

At any rate, in the meantime being away to see friends was nice.  Every now and then I have a moment before going to see people in which I don’t feel in any way up for the potential strain of social interaction.  …And then, of course, proceed to have a fine time once I’m there.  Another one of those things that I really DON’T WANT TO DO.  And then once I do them am like BOY AM I GLAD I DID THAT.   I don’t know what’s up with that.  In line with my unintentional genius at embodying all-or-nothing thinking, when my anxiety levels are artificially inflated I seem to want to do whatever it is that I have been doing recently.  Whatever that may be.  I think I could darn socks for several weeks if that’s what my brain happened to fixate on.  …Which is interesting, since the rest of the time I pretty much crave constant variety (and since I’m not entirely clear on what darning is exactly.  I think yarn may be involved).  I think a part of me still does in those moments.  That part is confused.

On the plus side, the Luvox-withdrawal nausea, etc. has leveled out a lot recently.  I acknowledge that apparently the crush-and-dissolve method works much better for many people when trying to get very small doses, but I don’t think it was going well for me.  I’m now back to breaking up pills into tiny little pieces instead, which makes it much harder to get an accurate dose, but seems to be agreeing better with my stomach.  While on the road, we thought it might be a good idea to acquire a sensitive little electronic scale to help distinguish which irregularly sized medication nuggets are larger than others so that I can get a more consistent tapering effect.  This has worked out okay except for the fact that at least three people in Kingston Ontario now think I’m dealing drugs.  And that I’m not, so am completely unable to cash in on their potential referrals.

Aside from the unfortunate lack of drug money and excuses to wear gold teeth and/or lurk about in alleys, things are okay at the moment.  The fixation on activities thing is a little odd, but I have grand ambitions to commit myself to some kind of pattern in which I am forced to change activities every hour, no matter what.  I have the willpower to know that if I sincerely decide to do it that I can, stupid medication weirdness or not.  So I will decide to vary it up a little more soon.  Maybe tomorrow.  I’m darning today.

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.