I’m sure it hasn’t escaped your attention that I’m posting less and, when I do post, the schedule is erratic. The simple truth is that I’m having a very hard time.
It’s not just the worry about future insurance premiums if Trumpcare passes. It’s not just my feelings about the president’s words, actions and general demeanor. It’s not even the stress of the volume of our combined appointments.
It’s everything and nothing.
It all catches up with you
Things are tough right now for both Tim and myself. It’s not something I really want to delve into, but suffice it to say that the past year has been hard for both of us. (I suppose that ought to be patently obvious given his suicidal ideation last year.)
The hurdles have made us both weary, making it even harder to keep up with the demands of a chronically ill life. It’s not great for a relationship either.
So yeah, the last 13 or so months have taken a lot out of us. And the grace periods that life usually (begrudgingly) provides seem to be getting shorter to the point that they no longer feel restorative.
Perhaps we’ve simply been putting off this bottoming out because we were too busy dealing with the latest problem. We’ve spent the last 10 years putting out fires on the financial, physical and mental health fronts. Maybe it’s the cumulative effect of 10 years of avoidance.
Of course, it’s entirely possible that things haven’t changed. Maybe the seemingly shortened respites are, in fact, the same as they’ve always been. Maybe the depression is just making them feel less restorative.
But whether or not it’s in our heads, the result is the same. We’re running on fumes, and brief, quiet interludes aren’t doing enough. It’s like putting $5 in an empty gas tank. It’ll move you forward, but not for long. And sometimes the needle doesn’t even budge off E.
It’s time for a change
I’ve known for a while now that my depression symptoms weren’t being as well-controlled as usual. But in each case it seemed like there was a root cause that was a temporary issue, like when I wasn’t sleeping enough. I didn’t want to make a long-term change to deal with a short-term problem.
But even if they are temporary problems, they keep coming one after the other, so that it’s the same as having one long-term issue. And I’m not equipped to keep taking the blows. Not to mention that it’s entirely possible that the worsening depression is what’s making each one’s impact so forceful.
In the end, it’s pretty clear that I need to change my current medication situation — and that’s a problem.
Top of my (drugs’) class
I’m at or near the top of both Lamictil’s and Wellbutrin’s recommended dosages. Which means adjusting my meds will bring a host of problems.
The best case scenario is that the doctor adds a new medication to the current regimen. But that brings a few dangers with it.
It’s not just a problem of potential side effects. It’ll require more frequent appointments to check the progress, and it’ll almost certainly require some fiddling with the dosage before we get it right. In other words, more stress and probably a waiting period for relief.
A middle ground is that I’m currently using a mood stabilizer as a sleep aid, and it’s been known to help people with Bipolar/Bipolar II Disorder. But it’s also known to cause major weight gain/compulsive eating in some patients. Lower doses don’t do much, but that side effect is more likely to kick in as the dosage goes up.
I already have problems with overeating. In fact, I’m trying to determine whether my current, rather nasty bout is from the new medication or the depression. It’s hard to tell, but I suspect it’s just the depression killing my willpower.
Finally, the worst case scenario: The psychiatrist changes one of my medications altogether. That process requires you slowly wean off one med and slowly increase the dosage of the other. Which is to say that for a certain period of time you don’t have enough of either one in your system.
It could be different if he just changes the Wellbutrin, but I don’t know. And I suspect switching off Lamictil would be a horror show.
But at this point, I don’t have much choice.
An uncertain future
All this is to say that I don’t think my erratic posting is going to stop any time soon. But I’m hoping that getting my meds squared away with help get me to the point that I can just even, as the kids today (don’t) say.
I want to come back to you guys. I feel like I’ve left you high and dry, though some of that is probably the depression talking. But I can’t think of subjects, which means I can’t think of what to write — or motivate myself to stop bingeing stuff on Netflix to escape from reality.
I want to get back to talking about finance since that’s half of what this blog is supposed to be about. But right now finances aren’t stressful enough to break through the fog of depression. And if they were, the depression would probably make me run and hide from them.
The cat has just decided that my outstretched, typing arms are a good place for a nap, so I’ll leave it here for now.
Just know that, as weird as this may sound, I miss you when my blog is quiet. I just don’t quite have the wherewithal to fix that right now.