Well I haven’t written on this blog in quite sometime, not since i went to Homewood Health Care Center back in August of 2013. I went to Homewood and completed the 2 months of the treatment. At the beginning I was resistant to do anything to change my condition other than agreeing to come off my medications. The psychiatrist there thought that the medications had me so sedated that I couldn’t feel anything and couldn’t properly discuss things that were going on in my life and how they impacted me.
We slowly came off my medications during the 2 months. We did have to put me back on an anti-depressant as when they took me off the ones I was one I started having more problems with my depression and suicidal thoughts. So they started me on a new anti-depressant, one that hadn’t been tried yet. The anti-depressant helped to stabilize me and I even had a few days towards the end of my stay where I was feeling well and happy.
After Homewood it was recommended that I see a psychologist to do talk therapy as that was one method that hadn’t really been explored with me and recommended that I stay on the current medications. I was more clear headed and I could think things through better. I was able to see things that were going on, recognize my triggers better and was at a level that i could start to become more active to help improve my mood.
On a normal day for me before Homewood I would have several suicidal thoughts a day, since Homewood i have had only 5 suicidal thoughts and one relapse where i cut myself recently. My mood for the last 3 months has been better than I can ever remember it being. I have been going out more, wanting to be around people, wanting to talk and meet people, and have gone from being stable to being well. It has been almost 20 years that I have been experiencing the depression and almost 10 years since i started treatment for it. It has been a long battle and a hard one but at the moment things seem to be changing.
This could be because things have run their course with the depression, it could be the medication, it could be being more active, it could be being more social, it could be the talk therapy, or it could be a mixture of all but the point is is that even though it took a long time things have started to change for the better. When your down in the ruts it’s hard to imagine that things can get better, and it feels like they never will, but remember that depression is not something that can be fixed overnight and takes a combination of things to get you well.
I was accepted and admitted into a treatment center called Homewood just over a week ago for treatment for my depression. The first three or four days were quite a challenge being away from my safety zone and in an unfamiliar place. My anxiety was pretty high during those days and i isolated myself for the most part. However, now that i have been there for a little while i am not so anxious about being there, i still have issues with my anxiety but i feel only the physical symptoms of the anxiety not the mental symptoms, which is a mystery to them. The psychiatrist that i have been assigned to seems to be a pretty good Dr. and i am pleased with the two meetings that i have had with him, he seems to know what he is doing.
The first meeting i had with him was on the day i was admitted and he was just getting some background information about my life and my depression. The second meeting was still gathering some information but trying to dig deeper about where my depression was coming from. He said that the situation was a bit unique and that he hadn’t really come across my situation before as most people that are admitted are having ups and downs and emotions are up and down as well. For me i am just numb and flat, I’ve shutdown and he believes that i have created a strong barrier between myself and my emotions that i subconsciously go numb or shutdown automatically and that i use up my energy keeping that barrier alive. I am on a lot of anti-anxiety medications so he wants to reduce the anti-anxiety meds to try and crack the barriers that i have put up, he is hoping that because i don’t have the anti-anxiety medications to calm me down that my emotions will start to come out and i will be forced to deal with them in a safe environment.
I get to go home on the weekends which is nice, i had to stay there for the first weekend, last weekend, and it was terrible. There wasn’t much to do but watch tv, read, and lay in bed. I couldn’t concentrate on the reading for much more than fifteen or twenty minutes, and got bored with watching tv, there wasn’t much on, so i found myself laying in bed for most of the weekend. I’m a smoker and didn’t have permissions to go outside the building but luckily my primary nurse said she didn’t have a problem with me going out for a smoke, thank god.
I am also hoping to do a medication change. One of the medications i am on is Wellbutrin and the side effects i have on it is small seizures, which are now not an issue as they put me on Epival, and sweating profusely, the sweating is really bad and it makes me very self-conscious and makes me not want to go outside for walks in this warm weather as i start to sweat so much. Between the Dr. and the group classes that i attend hopefully something will work and i will leave there after two months a little bit better and with any luck be able to gain back some semblance of a normal life. Time will tell.
One of the most frustrating positions I find myself in right now is low mood but some energy however, no interest in anything. I have to force myself to do things that would normally interest but I can’t do it for more than ten to fifteen minutes. It’s very aggravating, and it’s like this day in and day out. I do try to get out and go for walks to try and get rid of some of that energy but those are few and far between as I just can’t force myself to do it.
I think I have become too isolated and therefore too comfortable in my own home. It is my safety zone and I don’t feel comfortable when i leave it. Every weekend I go to my dad and step-moms house to spend time with my dad helping him with different projects around the house. Although I enjoy spending time with my dad I find I can’t stay more than three or four hours. The anxiety builds and the desire to go home is overwhelming.
Having a social life is also important and I do have a small social life. Outside of my parents I had one friend i would hang out with almost every day for an hour or two, but he has moved away about a two hour drive. I have another set of friends, husband and wife, that I try to hang out with at least once a week for a couple of hours. Lastly there is a place called “The Meeting Place” where people in similar situations can go to meet up and talk, a place to go and hang out. I try to go there everyday for at least an hour. At one point I had stopped going and noticed that my mood started to decrease so I started going again with the hopes that mood would increase again.
All in all it would seem like I have the socialization part down but I don’t really socialize much. I don’t really talk much I usually just listen and give short answers. Another aspect that I find frustrating. When I am around people my mind just goes blank and I can’t think of anything to talk about no matter how hard I try. I don’t know if it is just social anxiety or maybe that is just the way I am but I am coming to terms with it and accepting that that is just the way I am.
I put in an application for a treatment center that offers a treatment course on depression among other mental illnesses. It is suppose to be at the top of the list for treatment centers, people come from far distances to be in the treatment center. I was accepted and am now just waiting to hear back on an admittance date. I have been told it can take anywhere from one to three months. Hopefully not three months, i would like to go while it is still warmer weather.
Well i am sad to say that i had another suicide attempt. The day was going as a normal day, i had spent the day helping my dad with a few projects at his house and had dinner with them at the end of the day. Afterwards i went home got on the computer to play a few games and was feeling as normal as i could. Like the flip of a switch i was suddenly overdosing on medications. You see, i have had a stock pile of medications incase i became suicidal. It’s not necessarily that i don’t want to live but that i don’t want to live feeling this way anymore. So i kept a stockpile just incase i went suicidal again and would be able to end it.
I left my condo with a few bottles of pills and started walking while taking the medications, i didn’t want to die at the condo building as it may have made it harder for my parents to sell having to disclose that i had killed myself in the condo unit. I took my health card so that i could be identified. After finishing off two of the three bottles of medications being lithium and epival, i started on the serequel to put me to sleep. I called my dad and asked him to feed my cat in the morning telling him i was probably going to be going into the hospital. I was already feeling the effects of the medications and was a bit hazy and dopey. Something tipped him off and he somehow knew that there was more going on than what i was saying. He asked where i was and i told him i was walking down the street, he asked what street and i told him the name of a different street. He told me that if i wasn’t at the hospital within 10 minutes he would call the police to come and get me.
The thought of having the police out searching for me and taking me in for some reason scared me. I didn’t like the thought of having the police pick me up, so i went into the hospital. I refused to tell them what i had taken and how much, by the time my head hit the hospital bed i was asleep. When i woke up i was in ICU with an IV lead in each hand and an artery, heart monitors and tubes down my throat.
The experience scared me enough to turn in the stockpile of pills i still had at home. At first i felt ok that i had survived but after a while i started to regret going in and regret that i had lived through the attempt. Some things have been put into place that i have to do everyday to try and keep me active and fill up some of the time of my day, which is good because the more you sit at home alone the worse you start to feel and being around people will sometimes make you feel a little bit better.
The DBS (Deep Brain Stimulation) is being looked into again, with any luck i will be accepted into the study. The DBS is a last resort, there are still other medications to try but i have tried medications from every family of medications and there aren’t many more to try. I am at a fairly stable level with the meds i am so we don’t want to switch meds at this time. I have to force myself to do things as i lack motivation and interest in just about everything. But i am doing my best to try and get better.
Well it has been quite some time since i have written a post on this blog, but i had the urge to write another post mostly because of how i am feeling and i know there are a few people out there that are following this blog so i wanted to post for them as well.
I had been doing fairly well for a while but then i crashed about a month and a half ago. At first i thought it was just another dip into the depression and would snap out of it soon but things just kept getting worse for me. I was able to get a job in the mail room at the O.P.P. Headquarters, a no brainer job. I couldn’t handle it, i got through about an hour and a half of the job and i went into panic mode, my urge for committing suicide sky rocketed and i was sweating and nervous. I had a doctors appointment that i had to go to that interrupted my first day on the job. I talked with my psychiatrist about how i had been feeling and that I was having suicidal urges. My psychiatrist didn’t want me to be working with the way that i had and was feeling so he took me off work. My first job experience in 7 years and it only lasted an hour and a half, i dove deeper into my depression, wondering when this would all end or if i had to end it myself.
I haven’t had a drink in about 3 or 4 years, not because of alcoholism but just because i didn’t have an interest in drinking, i was the same drunk as i was sober so i saw no point. A few weeks ago i decided to have a drink with a friend and found that it calmed me down and made me feel a bit better after about two drinks. From then until about four or five days ago i started drinking every night. One night i drank more than just a couple glasses and if my friend in my condo building hadn’t come up to hang out when he did i would have overdosed, the alcohol was liquid courage to overdose. Moving forward i now know that if the urges get really strong but i can’t do it all i need to do is buy some alcohol and start drinking to get that liquid courage and kill myself. So for anyone out there who is experiencing some of the same issues i urge you not to drink at all, not even a couple of drinks as it can quickly turn into more or you can easily become addicted to alcohol.
I had met someone online and we got along really well online so we met in person and hit things off well. I was happy and excited about possibly getting into a relationship again, but it was not to be. I just couldn’t handle trying to be in a relationship while trying to get a handle on my depression, so that was short lived but we agreed to be friends, which is nice and a new friend is never a bad thing. This person has been through depression herself so she can relate with a lot of the things that i am going through which is also another nice aspect.
Today wasn’t too bad of a day, i slept in until about 11:00 am which i don’t do very often. I had some time to get up and get a few things done online before my DBT (Dialectic Behavioural Therapy) group. The group runs every week once a week for two hours. It doesn’t really apply to me but my doctors and social workers thought i might get a few things out of going to the group so i agreed to going. The group is a 1 year program which will end in september.
When i got home from the group i really wanted to make a video of some sort to post to youtube but couldn’t come up with anything which makes me wonder what i am good at, what skills i have if i couldn’t think of a video to do, but i’ll give it some more time to think about it and see what i come up with.
I did find a way to backup my movies which was good as i have been wanting to put my movies onto my hard drive incase they stopped working. I use a program called Xilisoft DVD Ripper to rip the movie off the disc then a program called Any Video Converter to convert the movie to the proper video format and save it to one of my external hard drives.
The depression today hasn’t been too bad, it was good up until about 5 or 6 pm EST, then it started to go downhill slowly. After a good nights rest i’m sure i will be fine. Sleeping seems to reset everything. I am always at my best first thing in the morning and at my worst in the evening, so hopefully any job i can get will be in the morning but if not then it’s not and i’ll deal with it.
Today has been an ok day, my mood seemed to be elevated for a period of time but i’m not sure for how long, and it seems to be coming down. I can say, however, that my mood was elevated while i had something to do and now that i have nothing to do my mood is coming down. I need to find something that really interests me and find a way to incorporate that onto the internet through blogging or through youtube as that is what i would like to get into. On a scale of 1 to 10 i am probably at a 6 and was at a 7 or 8 earlier.
I know that i should go out for a walk or do the step exercise but right now i just don’t seem to have the motivation to do so, maybe after writing this i will try to force myself to do a little bit of exercising, getting out the door is the hardest part. I was in at the dr’s office a couple of days ago and was weighed, my weight has gone up 25 lbs over the winter from about 175 to 202 give or take a few pounds. That makes me a little bit depressed as it took me all summer last year to go from 215 to 175, again give or take. I did two 1 hour walks a day every day and ate at a regular diet. I am hoping to be able to get my weight to at least 180 and then maintain if not loose some more weight. It will be hard as it will take a lot of motivation on my part that i seem to be lacking.