Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Number four

It was back to the doctor today for my two-week check-up after starting medicine numero tres. It was clearly not working, and I told him so. Despite my fear that he'd make me stick it out another two weeks (most antidepressants take four-ish weeks to provide full "relief"), he decided to switch my meds. Again. I knew I should have listened to my (non-medical-license-holding) therapist when she told me to stay away from this particular medicine; she's always right. You'd think I would know this by now.

I start the new new medicine tomorrow, and I have a plan to wean myself from medicine three (which seems to be a bitch to get off of, according to Dr. Google. Awesome). Ultimately, the doc is hoping to have me exclusively on this medicine and to have me weaned off the two I'm currently taking. That assumes this new med works, of course. I think I'll start calling it my Hail Mary Pill (HMP), as it doesn't sound like my doctor has a ton of other options for me if this doesn't work.

I have to give my doc credit, though, for not dicking around with this stuff. Rather than switching me to different medicines in the same class of drugs, he's been moving me to a new class of drugs each time. The theory being that if one brand of SSRI/SNRI/[insert other antidepressant category here] doesn't work, it's likely another brand of the same won't work either. So HMP it is.

Moving on to the wallow-y portion of the post. I may sound relatively perky this evening, but today has been a really awful day. I'm still struggling horribly and feel terrible about everything. What really set me off was Dr. C commenting that I have a "refractory mood disorder." While that statement is true and wasn't meant as an indictment of my character, I heard "you have totally untreatable craziness, you crazy-ass bitch." He also said something about "only a handful of [his] depression patients" being on the HMP, which roughly translated to, "you are so screwed, lady. Enjoy the nuthouse." This started a crying bout that lasted a good two hours. I managed to keep it at the sniffles-and-watery-eyes level until I got to the car, but I spent the drive home full-on sobbing. Luckily, B was home and able to go get the boys from daycare so I didn't have to show my ugly-crying face in public. By the time they all got home, I had sobbed myself to sleep. I needed some sleep, as I haven't been sleeping well for weeks and some combination of that and medicine three has made me completely exhausted. Sleeping didn't really help anything, but it kept me from having to deal with parenting tonight, which I also needed.

I think my little freak out today might have been a positive thing, though, because I think it has finally, finally opened B's eyes to how much some of our current circumstances are affecting me and how much some changes need to be made. Now we just have to wait and see if that mindset sticks. I'm not overly optimistic that anything will change. Then again, I'm not overly optimistic about anything these days. Maybe my Hail Mary with help with that.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Not ok

After this post the other night, I started doing some thinking. That thinking made me realize why it is that I get so irritated by the articles/websites/people in the "you can do eet!" vein. It's because I don't feel like I can do it. I realize that I'm not the first person to ever deal with depression, post-partum or otherwise. I know other people have overcome this. I know that some day I too will overcome it (maybe). But when your life is crumbling around you and you feel like a bigger failure than ever, each success story I read or hear about feels like a kick in the gut.

Let's face it. I'm a mess. I have a husband who has at least as many issues as I do (albeit far different ones) and is a mess in his own way. I have a job that seems to just barely pay the bills, no matter what I do. I have two beautiful sons who have destroyed my mind, body, and spirit. Kids that I can't honestly say I love more than, say, a babysitter loves her charges (love that would surely be greater if I got to give them back at the end of the night). Kids I definitely don't like a lot of the time. Kids who take everything I have to give - and then some - without providing that sense of joy a mom is supposed to get from her kids. Basically, I am flat-out miserable and unable to get the misery to change. I just want out.

I briefly looked at a PPD support blog today before I got so irritated and disgusted with it that I had to stop. One of its sponsors was a PPD resource foundation that was founded by the parents (I think) of a woman who had PPD who shot her six-week-old son and then herself. After reading her story, I thought to myself, "this woman had it right." She found a quick and easy way out from under this awful disease...I felt a teeny, tiny pang of jealousy. Wrong? You bet. But the thoughts slipped into my mind unbidden. Before anyone goes calling the crazy cops on me, I have absolutely no intentions of hurting myself or anyone else - I repeat, no suicidal ideation or homicidal tendencies. Got it?

Reading someone else's success story doesn't give me hope. It just makes me hate the successful woman a little bit. So please don't post your syrupy success story in the comments...I just can't deal with it. And if you do, I might cut you (but not in the way that requires an involuntary 72-hour hold, thankyouverymuch).

I don't know what the point of these ramblings is. I guess just to put it out there: I am not ok. Not ok at all. Not ok and not able to become ok.

I am in a place where I so desperately need and want help, but can't seem to find the kind of help I need. And until I can find that help, I guess I'll keep slogging along as I have been: not ok.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

I dyed

So I finally got bored enough tonight to actually dye my hair.

Here's the before shot (excuse my in-a-ponytail-all-day hair and crappy old-lady bathroom).

I obviously lack self-portrait skills.

The Samy Fat Foam dye I had was kind of fun to use. My color is deep cherry brown, in case you forgot. You mix the dye up in a shaker thingy, and it comes out as a nice, light foam. It was also a pretty mauve color. Not that that's relevant to anything. I thought it was easy enough to apply and wasn't very drippy, which was awesome because it prevented me from making a huge, irreparable mess in my bathroom. I also really liked putting it on by hand instead of using a damn dye bottle; seemed far less messy that way.

Here's my in-progress shot (complete with extra views of my crappy bathroom. Whee!).

While I waited for my color to develop, I cleaned my bathroom. I didn't bother to take pictures of that. You're welcome.

Freshly dyed and rinsed. It looks awfully...um...black...

I did a quick blow dry (probably not my wisest choice at 10:30 at night), and here's what resulted:

Um, it's dark. Like, really dark. I can't say I hate it, but I'm not sure I like it. I have a feeling it will grow on me (at least that's what I'm hoping).

My only real complaint is that my hair came out feeling super dry and straw-like. Part of that could be from my new medicine, though. For whatever reason, my hair has been awful since I started taking that stuff.

I know my pictures are craptastic, but what do you think?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

How I know I'm still not "over" my PPD

I read a PPD blog post by Blair, who is something of a PPD role model to me. Normally, her writing speaks to me, but all I could think as I read through this post was, "what a load of bullshit."

I particularly took issue with the following:
  • "This is a season" and "it's not forever." After three years, it certainly feels like for-fucking-ever.

  • "You will be ok." Again, after three years, I'm seriously beginning to doubt I will ever be ok.

  • "It is so worth the fight." I have a difficult time believing that. A really, really difficult time. I'm pretty sure I'm never going to think having kids was worth it.
I think it's pretty safe to say I'm not quite over the PPD thing yet.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Heartbreak 101

My friend's dad died over the weekend. He's been sick for a long time, but the end came quickly and semi-unexpectedly. I stopped at his house after work today to drop off some food. He wasn't home, but I got to talk with his wife for a bit. This is mostly irrelevant, though. The thing I found most heartbreaking about the whole situation was my friend's nearly-four-year-old son's response to everything.

My friend's wife told me my friend is doing as well as could be expected, considering that it's only been a couple of days. He only really has trouble when his son comes up to him (as he's frequently been doing) and says, "Daddy, do you miss your daddy?"

Tell you what, I didn't know my friend's dad all that well, but how can you stay dry-eyed in the face of that? Saddest. Thing. Ever.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

To dye or no?

I'm not big on hair color. In the past five years, I've had my hair colored twice. Both times, I've got some minimal, subtle highlights. Actually, when I got highlights right before my wedding, my hair was its natural color...so it's probably been more like seven or eight years since I've really colored my hair. And I'm pretty sure the last box of color I used was only a semi-permanent color. Permanent hair color from a box scares me.

I won a bottle of Samy Fat Foam Hair Color in a giveaway on Curvy Girl Guide (great blog, by the way). I'm not sure why I entered, as hair dye isn't really my thing, but I did. And I won. I picked deep cherry brown. My hair is close to the medium brown sample swatch, for what it's worth. I think the color would look good on me, but I'm scared of it because 1). it's permanent hair color and if it looks awful, I'm screwed, and 2). it's kind of dark for a summer color. Plus, I'm pretty sure I'll somehow manage to screw it up, despite its claims of being super easy to use.

What I'm getting at here is, should I dye my hair or not? Any opinions? Any tips for getting over my box-dye fear?

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Smells like cabbage

Been awhile, huh? I'll use the brutal stomach flu that ravaged R and me over the past week or so as my excuse.

In other news, I think I'm weaning R. I'm feeling oddly conflicted about this.

Things...well, things haven't been very good for me lately. Over the past couple of months, I've been working with my doctor to adjust my meds with the hope that we can find a combo that gets me back to something resembling normal. It hasn't been working particularly well. I'm close to the maximum dosage on both meds, and I'm still just barely keeping my head above water. My doctor wants to take me off of one med and replace it with a drug in an entirely different category. Sounds fine, right? And it would be, if I weren't still nursing.

The new medication is contraindicated when you're nursing. Really, the only stuff I could switch to is more or less the same as the stuff I'm on and the doc doesn't think it would make much difference for me, given the mild response I've had to dosage increases. So if I start the new medicine, I have to wean R.

I didn't think making the decision to wean would be a big deal - he's over a year old, he's drinking cow's milk, he's eating all kinds of solid foods, and, most importantly, I'm so ready to be done. I'm really struggling with this, though. R is very clearly not ready to wean. I've been working on getting rid of the morning nursing session, and it's not going well. R spends all morning banging his head into my chest, trying to pull my shirt down, and getting royally pissed off when I don't whip out a boob for him. He also still nurses at bedtime, which is going to be hard to get rid of.

I hate to see R as upset about this as he is. I know he wants to keep nursing, and I'd like to keep doing that for him. I'm doing well enough that I can keep treading water until R is ready to quit, I think, but I'm not sure that's a good option, either. My mom and B both think weaning R shouldn't even be a question at this point. My counselor thinks I should ask my doc for a different med (mostly because she's not a fan of the one he wants to switch me to, I think) and keep nursing.

It really comes down to this: is my or my son's well-being more important? I don't have a good answer to that question.

Even though I'm not entirely sure it's what I want to do, I've started the weaning process. It's been over 24 hours since his last nursing session, and I'm totally feeling the pain. My bra is stuffed with cabbage leaves and my whole house smells vaguely German (side note - I've decided that there's nothing quite as disgusting as pulling warm, wilted cabbage leaves out of your bra). I've choked down obscene amounts of sage tea today. B took over R's bedtime routine for the first time tonight, and it didn't go very well. I'm far more excited than I should be that I cannot be responsible for any midnight wake ups for at least the next week or so. I feel horribly about taking away something that's so good for my son and that he loves so much.

The mommy guilt...it just never ends.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The sickies

We've had the sickies around here lately. Nasty, stomach-flu sickies. Once we can all eat again, I'll get back to posting semi-regularly. Just thought I'd let you know I'm still alive.