Joy lies in the fight, in the attempt, in the suffering involved, not in the victory itself


Monday, November 7, 2011

the only way to get there is to go straight down

Lately I've been wishing for a BPD episode. Anything to shake up the dank, dreary depression that's threatening to block out the whole world. I remember hypomania with fondness... I miss anger, rage, fury - emotions of any kind - as lately I seem to be a blank/black canvas. I'm barely managing to keep my job, getting to work about two days out of five, spending the rest of my time sleeping. I used to blame my anaemia for the sleeping... but lately I've realised that the iron infusion must have kicked in by now, and therefore depression is probably the cause. If I'm honest, this spell of depression has been creeping up on me for months, starting before I raised my Cymbalta level to 120mg. Changing that medication has done nothing, supporting the research I keep reading about which says doses higher than 60mg are pointless.

I don't get paid for the days I'm having off, so I haven't been able to afford to see Doc A. But I'm making the effort this week, and scraping the cash together, as the situation is getting dire. I know he will suggest starting Lamotrigine, as that was one of his suggestions last time. I don't know why I'm on the fence about Lamotrigine...part of it is the cost, especially now I'm verging on unemployed, and part of it is because it's always been in reserve. For "just in case". If I start using Lamotrigine, what will I have left for next time the medication fails me??? More Lamotrigine I suppose.

I spent another day in hospital last week, having upper and lower gastrointestinal tract exams to check for bleeding. Nothing showed up, so my anaemia is unexplained. The haematologist believes it's related to my weight loss surgery. Regardless of the cause, I am still as light-headed and exhausted as ever. I have the Ignite Your Life course this weekend, Friday to Sunday, and I'm dreading it. I have no idea how I will manage to be upfront, present and awake for all those hours, when I usually spend half the weekend asleep. I'm desperate for some relief from this depression, though, and anecdotal evidence suggests this course can provide it. My parents and brother have done the course, and found it inspiring and energising and claim there were a few people who were previously medicated for depression (unipolar and bipolar) that now no longer need medication. I'm skeptical. And don't intend to give up my medication for anyone/anything. I'm a true believer, even though at the moment it doesn't seem to be doing much for me.

I was talking to my family about this course a couple of weeks ago and confessed that I really don't think the course organisers will have come across anyone as lunatic as me. Anyone as recidivist and recalcitrant. Are they prepared for someone whose only goal in life is to not complete suicide? They sent out this pre-course questionnaire and it had all these questions like "What are you most proud of?", "Name four emotional states you regularly experience", "What are your motivations for doing this course". Even reading the questions made me exhausted and hopeless. "How would you describe yourself" was one, and my immediate answer was "fat, fucked, failure". I can't decide if right now is the best or worst time for Ignite Your Life... most of me, the hopeful part, believes that things happen for the right reasons, and therefore it must be the best time. I really, truly hope to experience some life-altering changes. I can't wait to update you all next week.

I'm sorry I haven't been commenting as much on your blogs as I have in the past. I feel like anything I say will be negative and pointless, so often I will stay silent. But I'm still reading, and I hope everyone who's going through a hard time right now will soon be on an upswing. Lots of love to all xx


Pixie said...

I know, my Lil-Lil, that that was a bloody hard post to write, for you. And, in truth, hard to read knowing you are going through hell and I can do nothing to help. There are no words to say when light seems inconceivably. It sounds to me a little like your anti-depressant has burnt out on you, which as we know they can do, so that visit to the Doc is essential, and I am so pleased you are going. Lamotrigine - well, I'm on it and I still sit on the fence. Perhaps I will talk more on that this week. I am babbling. None of that matters. When you crawl from the depths to write a post, something, something is shifting very very slightly. It is, I think, a step in the right direction.

You have a friend here who would love to know how the appointment pans out. You have a friend who wants to jump on a plane right now. You have a friend here who wishes they could do anything which would make that blackness lift for you. You have a friend here who loves you to bits.

You have a friend here, okay? Always.

Love you, girl. xxx P

Anonymous said...

Sorry you aren't feeling well certainly does sound like depression to me. I recommend giving Lamictal a try. It worked well for me. You may also need to add something like Abilify to augment the depression. It is working very well for me. I wish you the best and hope you can get yourself to a doctor.

Lucida said...

Hi Lil,
I haven't been around for a long while but wanted to drop by and offer my sympathies for the tough time you're going through at the moment. It veritably sucks and I really do hope and pray it pisses off soon. I've been on lamotrigine for a couple of years now and I don't think it's all it's cracked up to be. It helped me a bit for the first 6 months but now it seems my brain's shrugged it off and I may as well be scoffing smarties twice a day, especially as they taste a whole lot nicer. Still, always good to have a plan B tucked away. I completely understand why the prospects of the course seem dim at the moment. I know you've been waiting a long time for it but sometimes it's best just not to approach these things when you're feeling so crappy. is there any chance of deferring for another time?
Lots of love to you Lil and a big kick up the arse to that stinky black dog that's got no business following you around. xxx

Just Be Real said...

Dear one I am so very sorry for your depression and how it sits with you. Glad you are able to write about it and what you plan on seeing yourself through this time. Here always listening and always appreciate what you have to share and what you share with me as well. Safe hugs.....

Anonymous said...

I really hope you feel better soon both physically and emotionally -- I can certainly relate to both. Oh, and that blank/black canvas you describe really resonates with me -- I *HATE* feeling NOTHING. Numbness is awful. When I get into that state, I agree -- sometimes it makes an episode of any sort seem like a rather seductive alternative. Be well. *hugs*

d'Artagnan said...

Hang in there. I hope you start to feel better really soon. Sending you lots of love.

butterfly keeper said...

hey lil,
butterfly keeper here~
girl, it sounds like depression, but i'm no pdoc. what i can tell you is that lamotrigine is a *life changine* drug. life changing, i tell you. i've been on it for years. i went off it for awhile, and ALL my depression symptoms came roaring back. i went back to the lamotrigine and boom: i got back to that place of "normal" was. it put me right back to an even keel with little to no side effects. i really love my lamotrigine.

another thing that really helped me: zen buddhism and sitting zazen (meditation); before i could start figuring out where i wanted to go, i had to stop and figure out where i was (i still don't really know); but i'm more at peace with that uncertainty. zen (to me) is partially about accepting yourself with the light of the buddha.

i'm sending you much peace.


Jen Daisybee said...


I am so sorry you are having such a difficult time and I know that it has been going on for a while. But I wanted to say, in case you don't remember, you're not *usually* like this, not most of the time. I think you are *usually* at least, from your posts, someone who can see the positive side of things and who doesn't feel like a complete failure. You seem so upbeat and so cheerful so often! I know that it probably doesn't seem that way right now, because when you're in the middle of depression it makes you think life has always, always been bleak and will always, always be a horrible lost cause. I have been there, and I understand. But it hasn't always been this way. And it won't always remain this way. You can get better. The meds can get worked out and you will be feeling better at some point. I hope it's really soon, but if it's not tomorrow, it might be next week, or after that. And no matter how bad things seem right now, there is a sun over the horizon, there are happy moments and you have MUCH to be proud of, my friend. You are by far, NOT a failure or a loser or anything else you are thinking right now about yourself. You persevere, and you overcome, and you have strength, and kindness, and a remarkable character. I just wanted to remind you of that. Don't give up; it is not a lost cause. You will be alright eventually, and you'll be able to look back on these days and be glad you are not in them anymore.

Saracide said...

I know this post is a bit old, but I am just getting around to reading it and I must say, I can relate so much. I have been missing work as well and bordering unemployment has me stressed the eff out! Part of me wants to quit or get fired, part of me says suck it up and go.. its just so hard some days.
Hugs girl. Your comments always brighten my day. I hope you are feeling better, and I just want to say I'm very thankful to have you as a friend :)