Monday, August 6, 2012

Anxiety, Depression & Pain = 1 Unhappy K8

I've always heard that with a chronic illness comes depression. I've never believed it until a few months ago. I've always considered myself a very strong willed, heard headed person. Not like, my way or the highway, but my way or we'll take a detour. As I've stated before, the depression didn't really bother me when I got diagnosed with the multitude of headaches. Yes, I was "depressed"' but NOTHING like I am now. Obviously it comes when your whole life is turned around 360 degrees. You're 27 years old & can't work, no life, just pain...

O.K, I'm going to tell you 100% whats been going on. Around June I noticed myself, not really being myself. I slept more than usual (which is something that comes in waves), I cried a lot more at stupid things like TV commercials, feeling completely over whelmed to the point where I would have crying binges for hours at a time, & then I had my first panic attack. Let me just say I was honestly surprised at the severity of them!! Then everyday became more of a chore than "normal" for me. I would have no ambition at all. I lost focus on my hobbies, crocheting, reading etc. When I went out into public it was HORRIBLE!! I would see all these mothers with their infants & instantly despise them with everything in me. (This comes due to the fact that my Hubby & I haven't conceived yet. I don't know if its due to my body refusing it, or what. Another unresolved issue that plagues me) I also started having panic attacks just because I was leaving the comfort of my domain. Nothing could hurt me there, everything at home I could control.

The worst part for me was the suicidal thoughts. I would have these visions in my head of jerking the steering wheel while my Hubby was driving & ending it all. There was also the planning of my funeral, wondering if I wasn't here would it make s difference, watching a knife going down my arm & laughing at all the blood pouring out, and lastly would it be that bad if I did so?

So, as that progressed I also started making up delusions & over analyzing situations. I had to re-do every part of my day & see if there was something I should have done better or something I wished I did do. (Like "All I did was sleep & lay around today, I'm so worthless") Over whelmimg myself with stupid thoughts that didn't matter. For example, I believed 100& that my Husband wasn't happy with me, & going to leave me. All because he was scared, quiet & didn't know how to help me. I sat at the kitchen table that night uncontrollably crying & apologizing to him. Realizing I was doing this to myself, for no reason at all!! Something inside my brain clicked & told me I wasn't right.

The very next day I called my doctor to make an appointment. I NEEDED HELP!! She put me on Celexa for the depression & Klonopin for the anxiety attacks. (Which were coming at a rate of 7 a day average) As a month went on the Celexa wasn't helping, the Klonopin did its job & mellowed me right out. She switched the Celexa to Effexor XR. That worked! The doctor wanted me to go to counseling for everything, but I plain refused... As I stated in my last post, this is MY BODY, MY PAIN, MY MOODS, & no one is going to tell me how to deal with it. Someone has a plan for me & I plan on facing it head on. Even if there has been bumps along the way...

I also have to mention there has been A LOT of personal stress in life too. My Hubby lost his job, so financially we are not OK. I blame & hate myself for nit being able to get a job & help. Bad luck has followed us like a storm cloud. One thing after another. Before I can even deal & face one burden, another one comes & slaps me on the face... It has not been easy & it seems like it'll never get any better.

As of right now, I'm doing OK. A lot better than I was, but not where I used to be. Anxiety attacks still plague me, my delusions have lessened, the public still bothers me, but not to a point where I despise them any more. Believe me, I still see mothers with their babies & my heart jumps into my throat. I'm still insanely jealous over friends & family members with newborns. But I'm also really happy for them. I'm only jealous because I want one!! The depression is still there & I'm still hard on myself. If I have a "good day" (bearable pain) I try to make the most of it, without pushing myself too far that I'm hurting the next day. I know normalcy will come in time, I just have to get through these thoughts & feeling without burying them.

People always tell me I'm a strong person to deal with 2 chronic illnesses & not succumb to suicide or addiction. But you know what? I'M NOT STRONG, I SURVIVE! Someone has made this my track in life & even though I fail sometimes to face it head on, I don't really have a choice. THIS IS MY LIFE, NOW & FOREVER. So, yes there has been some bumps along the way, but I plan to deal & face this struggle any way I can. I have to survive. I have to deal. I have to live my life to the fullest. Even if this wasn't what I had imagined for myself.

I write all this & am open with you with my struggles because I want everyone to know that its OK to feel this way. Maybe you don't feel 100% like I have, but depression, anxiety & suicidal thoughts are something most people deal with. Especially, in the chronic pain community. So please, the only thing I want you to get out of this is, its OK to gt help. Its OK to reach out to family, friends or whomever. Talk about whats been going on with you... Knowing you have a problem & admitting it & reaching out is very hard. But its also the BEST thing you can do.




Diana Lee said...

Thank you for sharing this, Kate. People need to know what it's really like for us and we need to talk about it with each other. Just through the act of sharing your story so openly you're breaking down stigma.

I deal with the depression and anxiety, too, like so many others. For me a combination of meds, psychotherapy, and meditation have been the most helpful. But it's still a constant struggle. How could it not be given what we're dealing with?!

Major kudos to you. I'm so glad you reached out for help and things have started to improve a bit.

Kate "Katetastrophe" Chappell said...

Thank you ever so much Diana. That was my main reason to write this was to help others. I know I'm not alone on this. Just putting it out there opens peoples eyes to the realization that it's not physical pain, but emotional pain as well.

andrea said...

Kate, dear heart. I knew you were struggling but not the depths of it. My eyes are tearing up after reading your post. I can relate to those awful feelings on some level, only mine manifested itself with short-tempered ness. It will keep getting better hun. It's all chemical - it's not our faults. I wish you good things.

Unknown said...

Kate, I'm reading this and its like you have painted a picture of my life. All I can say is hang in there. I hope things get better. Please know that you are definately not alone in your feelings. (((Hugs))) to you.