Pondering on depression

Last time I suffered depression, when I moved back from Canada after my husband and I split, I had a job to go to every day and a dog to walk. I had a mate who would call for me every day too with his dog and we would walk the dogs together. I’d spend all weekends alone though with my dog, staring at my four walls.

I have since lost my dog, currently not working, have no driving licence, have suffered two manic episodes which ended in psychosis and was hospitalised twice for those in the past 6 months. Safe to say this depression will be harder to cope with than my previous one. Although this time, I have asked for meds much earlier than I did last time. I am still waiting for them to work, although I am unsure what they will do, plus I was told last time I took them they can bring on manic episodes too so to be careful with them.

My depressions seem different to those I hear or read about. I am still able to get out of bed and clean. I also try and get myself out of the house when I get the opportunity. I don’t spend all day sleeping, although I wish I did, but It’s the utter despair in my mind stops me sleeping all day. Maybe it’s not depression, maybe I am just really really down? The dark thoughts that enter my mind on occasions though tell me it’s something more…

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4 comments on “Pondering on depression

  1. I have been reading your posts faithfully each day and was getting terribly concerned about your mental state and where you were heading. Until yesterday’s post. I was quite impressed with it and felt you must have turned a corner on your depression until I realized it wasn’t actually your post, but another’s, re-blogged.

    I have never been formally diagnosed with bi-polar, but have had Dr.’s infer that they believe I may be and one Dr. went so far as to put me on meds, which I only stuck with for a couple weeks (at most). I didn’t like the “dead” feeling they gave me, (neither up, nor down, with no ability to feel either way – just middle of the road ho-hum).

    However, I recognize the cycle of manic highs and depression lows. The self-sabotaging behaviour of a devil-may-care attitude towards consequences I should and do know better than to bring on myself, yet going ahead with the actions – almost as a dare to others to “do their worst” to me.

    Yet, with months of counselling, (something I encourage you to begin), talking out issues in my life that I thought I had dealt with long years ago, I learned tools for coping with those depressive lows, and patience for the manic highs. (Think running off from my permanent pension-earning government job and large support group of friends to Alberta to be with a man I barely knew. Or, marrying that same man when I knew months before that he was not the right man. And hundreds of other examples of past stupidity)

    Believe me, you can lead a fulfilling life. The key is to recognize that you have a cycle in your life and to hold on through the depressed cycle until you begin to feel better. As you feel your mood lighten, begin to watch for tell-tale mania signs, and filter your ideas through a set of parameters. Remind yourself, “Although you may not care what happens next at this particular moment, you will eventually”.

    I found that I can’t handle alcohol well, as it seems to exacerbate my “devil may care” attitude towards consequences and I have sometimes taken actions that have had devastating consequences. My solution is to smoke pot, which allows me to feel relaxed and happy without losing control. Pas, I know you don’t want to rely on crutches, but I don’t see the harm in taking a drug that makes you feel good and does little to no harm to your body. It’s been my self-medicating drug of choice for over 20 years, and my liver and kidneys are not in any danger from it.

    Now, I’m not advocating that you smoke pot, so don’t get upset.

    I really just wanted to let you know that while bi-polar is frightening, you have already been dealing with it your whole life, and found ways to cope with it. The difference now is, that you have a name for what you go through. It’s a “diagnosis”. But if anything, that should make it easier. There are support groups for it – online and in the real world.

    The best thing for you to do is to get out and be with people. Search out a local support group and call them. Ask if you can catch a lift with a member or organizer. Don’t suffer alone.

    Another suggestion is to volunteer at your local animal shelter. You can walk their doggies – with other volunteers or shelter employees – and be a big assistance to the animals.

    xxo S

  2. Thanks for your comment Shannon.

    I am already part of a local animal shelter, alas without transport not much I can do. I have looked for support groups but nothing in my area.

    And yes I know I have probably lived happily with this for many years self medicating, but now that I have been hospitalised three times for my manic episodes, it feels a whole different ballgame. At the moment, it’s the depression that is worrying me. I have thought maybe smoking pot again could be an option but I hear it can bring on manic episodes too so best stay away from it.

    I am trying to get through each day the best I can at the moment, and that’s all I can do. I can’t get out and be with people as I don’t know many people here and there aren’t anyone around, especially not during the week. At the weekend, I usually meet a friend at the pub and then meet up with my lodger when she finishes work and invariably, I just sit and watch as they get drunk, until I can take it no more and go home. This is no life 😦

    Thanks for caring xx

  3. That does sound very lonely. I’d like to chat with you in a less public venue. Are you on skype still? Can you send me another invite?

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