So I have made it no secret that I am taking anti-depressants. Dealing with family medical conditions nearly sent me over the edge.
Depression for me takes two forms. First I want to totally disengage from life. If I could stay in bed all day, I would. If Jenn and Ethan were away, I would frequently not get out of bed during the weekends. I managed to work, but just barely.
Second I get irritable. This is what got me to start taking meds. I could deal with the sadness, but the irritability expressed as anger, rage and outright hatred was impacting my relationships. I nearly got fired on several occasions. I would *usually* hide the beast from my family, but everyone else was fair game. I would tailgate when I drove. I would yell at store clerks and rage at coworkers in meetings at work. Patience was non-existent. If I perceived that someone was not *getting it*, I would automatically classify them as stupid and treat them as a human subspecies. I finally got sick of living with myself. Something had to change. So I took the drugs.
I do not know what I was expecting when I started the meds. I think I was expecting to feel euphoric. In reality your mood just evens out. You become almost ambivalent. In less than a year at work, I have gone from riding the edge of insubordination to being the iceman. I have a meeting twice a week with our support analysts. I used to berate the poor people in that meeting. I am sure they walked out feeling stupid or hating me or both. Now in spite of some pretty heinous problems, I actually joke in the meeting.
I was in a minor car accident recently. It was not my fault. A year ago I would have got in a shouting match with the other drivers. Instead I just took down all the info and waited for the cop.
Medically, we are looking at a tough road ahead. And while I feel some anxiety about more invasive procedures, I am by no means consumed with fear.
This all sounds great. Except of late I have noticed a loss of creativity. My blogging volume has plummeted. Nothing in everyday life captures my attention. As far as critical thinking, I think the meds have improved my cognition. But when it comes to being silly or *off the wall*, a staple of my personality, that part of me is largely gone. I was reading about side effects online, when I stumbled on to this quote:
Antidepressants aren\’t addictive, she says, but they do flatten a lot of people. \”You don\’t feel depressed, but you don\’t feel joyful either,\” she says. \”They close the amplitude of emotions, so there are no lows or highs. This is why antidepressants were historically reserved for people undergoing major depression.
In a word���Spockulation. I briefly considered getting off the meds. But I know my depression was out of control. For now getting off the meds is not really an option. I hope that I will eventually tear through this layer of gauze that encases my head. I am not too confident.
For now, I will surrender the joy to abate the sadness.