I haven’t blogged for quite a while now. Things have been good – the double dose of Sertraline is working very well, and I’m happy and stable most of the time. When things are tough, or worrying, I get unhappy or worried, but it feels like a direct response to the situation and when the situation eases, I feel better. I guess this is what happens with ‘normal’ people:-)
The side effects of the Sertraline are not great, although much better than being depressed. Weird sleep patterns are the worst. Sometimes I can’t sleep at all – I get up in the middle of the night, between 2am and 4am, and stay awake for a couple of hours before going back to bed. That does lead to me being tired in the daytime and having trouble getting up in the mornings. I take melatonin on occasion and that does help, but if I take it too often I feel quite tired. I also do feel that my brain doesn’t work quite as fast as it used to. I have gradually been noticing a rise in my energy levels though. That leadbum feeling I was getting that I spoke about in my last post doesn’t happen very often at all any more, and doesn’t last long when it does happen. I’m taking a variety of herbal supplements, and they’re working very well. I am looking forward to lowering the dose again, but that won’t happen until next year. I react very badly to the cold weather, and so coming off the high dose at any time except for spring is not a good idea.
One thing I have noticed as my mental health improves is just how bad it actually was for so long. I think one of the things that distinguishes depression from unhappiness is that it makes the sufferer believe things that simply aren’t true. Rather than just seeing the world through an unhappy filter, tending to assume the worst in a situation, which is what can happen when people feel unhappy, the depressive believes the worst despite being told over and over that it’s not true, despite having it proved over and over again that the worst is not the case. For me, this inability to accept the word of others, or the proof that all is well, can and usually does, lead to a downward spiral which becomes all consuming.
The relief I feel when these feelings stop, when I can believe that it’s all ok, is immense. It probably also explains to some extent why my energy levels fall so low when I am depressed, and start to rise when I feel better, and I’m sure given a boost by the herbal supplements – I guess my body gets into habits and needs to break them, just as my brain does. So no matter what the side effects are, I will continue to take the tablets for as long as they stop me from believing things that are quite simply wrong.