It’s been a long while since I have posted anything. I figure I am long overdue for an update here, so here we go!
When I last updated you guys in February, I was in a hard place. I was struggling with depression and the things my brain tells me when I am in a depressed state. I felt deflated. On that day I had found an old photograph from 2012. The difference between that 2012 photograph and the one I took this year were insane. I couldn’t believe how much my face shape and looks had changed.
While that post was hopeful and at the time I was looking forwards, going back now and reading it, I see my depression full on. I see the things my depression was masking from me at the time.
Let me explain,
I have a tendency to allow the world around me to shape too much of my emotions. I feel everything very deeply. When a friend or coworker is upset about something, I am going to feel sad with them. When a partner is having a bad day and feeling grouchy, I internalize that as if I am doing something wrong. While I was proud of what I had accomplished, I didn’t let myself feel it. I was too worried about the word around me and what others thought.
This is a disordered way of thinking. In reading that Feb 2017 post, I can see how sad I was and how little I thought of myself. I wasn’t taking my meds like I was supposed to and that was making things worse. Meds can’t work if you don’t take them. I cannot stress this enough.
After that post, things took a turn for the worst. I didn’t take anything for myself. I wasn’t interested in writing. I had little interest in eating healthy food. I didn’t want to exercise. I felt alone and empty in a very dark place. There was nothing that I wanted or felt drawn towards. I felt like I didn’t care. Numb is the best was to describe it I think.
I continued to take my meds after that post, but it brought me to another dangerous place. My energy increased, but the depression hadn’t really gotten much better. I still had no interest in anything. This was causing me severe anxiety. I had all this energy and nothing to do with it. I felt like the inside of a soda bottle when you shake it up. I was going to explode.
This was so frustrating for me. I felt like “I am doing everything right, I am losing weight, why don’t I feel happy?” All my life I have equated losing weight with being happy. And now that I was losing weight regularly, I wasn’t happy and it didn’t make sense to me.
I mentioned in that post that I had an upcoming appointment with my Thyroid doctor. I went, and she said I was doing amazing. I had lost weight and my labs were great. The problem was I didn’t FEEL great. Because of the weight loss, the doctor thought my dosage might be too high. She switched me to a lower dose and also changed the brand of medicine I was on. The goal was to get my body to break out of this shell I was in.
I also went back to my psychiatrist. I explained to her that while I didn’t feel suicidal, I did feel like suicide would be SO EASY. I had the energy and thought process of what to do if I wanted to do it. I had contemplated going to an inpatient program. I thought about a lot of things that weren’t good for me, and some I thought were my “last hopes”. Talking about all of this with my doctor, we decided to add another drug called Lamictal. This med was designed to help level my moods out; to attempt to decrease the depression without the anxiety rearing its head.
So far, with the med changes of both the thyroid meds and the mood stabilizer, I am doing much better. I have been writing in my personal journal, going back to the gym. I have caught up at work and even managed to go to a week-long conference, that didn’t leave me terribly behind or exhausted. I have rediscovered my love for podcasts thanks to my good friend Liz at Liza Jane Chronicles . All of this has been very therapeutic.
So what happened?
What I didn’t consider was that while I was losing weight, my body’s functions were increasing. my heart rate was up, I was sleeping better, and my metabolism was gaining strength. This was all due to my thyroid medicine doing its job. And while this is a good thing, losing weight made the dosage of my thyroid hormones too high. I didn’t need as much. I was experiencing the opposite of what I was dealing with before.
Not only that, but I have figured out that losing weight isn’t what is going to make me happy. I have to put energy into healing myself. I have to figure out how to not let others emotions control my own. I have to live my life for ME, not for other people’s image of who I am supposed to be.
Maybe other people have already figured this entire thing out. And they might have the answers I am still searching for. What matters is that I am figuring out for myself. And I think that is something other people forget. When you want someone to learn something, sometimes they have to learn it on their own. Like an addict, no matter how much we want them to get clean, it is up to them.
So kids, the lesson here, take your damn medicine like you are supposed to. And if you are still having trouble, talk to your doctor about it. There are answers and ways to move on. You do not have to be stuck in one place.
Stay tuned for more frequent updates.
P.S. Today marks the 2 year anniversary of this blog. I want to take a moment to thank all of you have stayed loyal through all of the ups and downs. I see great things for the future and I am grateful for each of you for helping me achieve my goals. I hope you have gained something from these ramblings as well.