Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Freakin Hilarious!!!

This has to be the funniest car chase scene ever filmed.



But there is also always this one!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Going back to work

So, I was supposed to be out of work until April 30th, but in order for my office to accommodate that I was going to have to go on COBRA insurance which was going to cost $1000 per month for me and my family! That was definitely going to punch a hole in our meager nest egg, so I went to two doctors and they both released me to go back. I'm going back on Monday! Ack! Wasn't quite ready so quickly. Haha. From thinking I was going back in 5 months to going back in less than 5 days was a little shocking. But it's only part time for a couple of weeks, until I can get my groove back on. Unfortunately, my shift is from 6 AM to 10 AM. Yay that I will be out early and have the rest of the day ahead of me, but boo that I have to get up at the butt crack of dawn!

I'm somewhat looking forward to it. I get to get out of the house and my husband will be watching the baby. He has lupus and cannot work right now. So, we're praying that my paycheck will sustain the family. Nicely added stress there...

So, there you have it. I'm a working gal again. Back to the grind. Funny how things can change so quickly. At one minute I'm thinking I have until April and then BAM! Back to work for me!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

School

So, I decided I want to go back to school. I was enrolled in this school and missed just going back by one quarter. So, I had to go through the application process again. Well, on the application form it asked if I had ever undergone psychological treatment.... Nice. So, I didn't lie. I said "Yes". Well, now they are giving me a hard time and wants to talk to my therapist before they think they are going to let me in. I JUST went there! So, now I am finding a different college. I'm fed up with their attitude about this. I'm not ashamed of what I've gone through and I'm not going to let it stop me from achieving my dreams. I don't know if my old college is going to let me back in, so I'm moving on. Liberty University, here I come!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Good old "friend"

Yesterday, I was off on taking my medication and as much as I felt I was getting better, I realized just how much the medication helps. My intrusive thoughts and depression started coming back. Dammit! I really wanted to think it was gone. I truly thought it was. I thought I was better, and maybe I was, but it wasn't really me.... it was the medication. Does that count?

I know if you're reading this, you must be just as tired of hearing that I'm depressed as I am of saying it. Will this ever end?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Haven't posted in a while

Sorry about that. I graduated from my program a couple of days ago so I am officially on my own. Well, sorta, but you get my drift. Things have been going well. I am planning on going back to school, so that has made me very happy. The baby is whining right now and that sucks. He's fussy, tired and won't go to sleep. Poor little dude.

Every day I pray my depression doesn't come back. I know it's something that I will have to fight when/ if it does and sometimes I wonder if I have the strength. God doesn't give us more than we can handle, right?? Why on earth did He think I could ever handle this? Oh.... this is getting me funky. I'll post more later. Toodles! :)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Getting better

Well finally! It' almost 1 in the morning and the whole family is asleep, yet I'm sitting up on here. I've always been a night owl. But, I can honestly say, from the bottom of my heart that depression does lift! Anxiety does mellow. Sleep does come. I believe that through the proper medication, therapy and support, I see a light. I see that light that everyone so annoyingly talks about. I pray that all of you struggling with PPD/ PPA/ PPP etc will notice that shift. The shift that happens when you realize that you actually see the future and it's not only existent, but it's healthy, happy, joyful. I pray that the thought monkeys go to sleep. They may not die, but they will sleep for a long time. Your brain becomes your own again and depression doesn't own you. I pray that you are not a victim, but instead that depression is your victim. You won't be like a leaf blowing in every direction due to depression, but you are strong like that tree that grows the leaf.

Do I fear that it will come back, yes. Is it here now? No. That is all I need to know and I will live life in these moments and not in fear of the ones to come.

Friday, November 12, 2010

This touches my heart...

When all is said and done
Will we still feel pain inside?
Will the scars go away with night?
Try to smile for the morning light
It's like the best dream to have
Where every thing is not so bad
Every tear is so alone
Like God himself is coming home to say

I, I can do anything
If you want me here
And I can fix any thing
If you let me near
Where are those secrets now
That you're too scared to tell
I'd whisper them all aloud
So you can hear yourself

Green trees were the first sign
The deepest blue, the clearest sky
The silence came with the brightest eyes
And turned water into wine
The children ran to see
The parents stood in disbelief
And those who knew braced for the ride
The earth itself then came alive to say

I, I can do anything
If you want me here
And I can fix anything
If you let me near
Where are those secrets now
That you're too scared to tell
I whisper them all aloud
So you can hear yourself

I'm sorry I have to say it but you look like you're sad
Your smile is gone; I've noticed it bad
The cure is if you let in just a little more love
I promise you this, a little's enough

(Just a little...)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Well, well, well...

Went to see one of my many doctors on Friday and she has increased my Abilify to 15mg, my Xanax to .5mg three times a day and 1 mg at bedtime. All in all, I thought I was getting better, but it's just the sleep issue that has me in a twitch now. But tonight, I was vacuuming in the nursery, and there it was again.... The freakiest thing. If I had been asked to put money on this thought being true, I would have bet the farm. I was convinced someone ran up behind me. I thought a man was in the room with me, running up behind me ready to grab me. I whipped around, ready to fight, and was greeted by nothing but the closet and a bouncer. Dammit! Not that I'm not happy there wasn't a serial killer in the house, but I'm angry that a thought like that would feel so real. Well, another day toward freedom from this... One day closer to that stupid light people swear is at the end of the tunnel. I think it might be there. At least, I'm not as bad as I used to be... Can't I find some solace in that?

Monday, November 1, 2010

Insomnia...

Can't sleep... cannot sleep. It's been about two weeks of either insomnia or nightmares. Hmmmm. Interesting. What is this new development you might ask? So do I! I told my husband earlier today we might have a "Fight Club" scenario on our hands if we're not careful. So, tonight, 1 1/2 Ambien, 10 mg Abilify, and sleep? God, I hope so. Yoinks! The child just projectile vomited!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

New day...

It is absolutely gorgeous outside today. It rained last night and cleared the air, so it's just beautiful. I can enjoy it today. Just had a friend come by and we got to enjoy each others company. She brought her 7 month old, so I got to see what is awaiting us. Sitting up, crawling, being a precious baby. Moods and feelings are are bay today. Nothing too extreme. I cannot ask for more. I feel pretty good. I love to see weather like this, so that helps.

I haven't been sleeping well. Nightmares mostly. But, last night, on top of the myriad of other medications, I took a Vicodin. That helps me sleep and it was nice. Finally to get a decent night of sleep. The little Booger was with a friend, so no 5 am cries. Just rain. We'll see how tonight goes....

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

As the guilt rolls in...

After a few days of an upswing, my good old friend of depression has decided to make a comeback. It's the loudest voice I hear and it tells me things like, I'm an unfit mother, I'm too selfish to have a child, this will never get better, I will never get better, along with a myriad of other "truths". My husband, God bless him, is so supportive, but again, depression is making me feel like I'm a burden to him.

I had a nightmare last night that I was being attacked by all these animals and spiders, then I found my husband and he took me out to sushi... dreams can be so odd. Well, anyway, we got into a fight in this dream and I said I was going to kill myself, and he said, "Please, go ahead and just do it!" It was heartbreaking.

I've been having nightmares since my dr. put me on Xanax, so I've decided I won't be taking it at night anymore. Maybe at least the nightmares will stop.

I hate the ugliness of depression. It's just so ugly and hateful and it robs you of your life. It takes away joy, hope and anything positive. It does it so gleefully, leaving the person standing there a shell of a person, essentially without a soul.

I should be going to sleep, but depression is even telling me I don't deserve to sleep in my warm bed with my husband by my side. It's telling me that I deserve to sleep on the cold hard floor, because that's all I deserve. Hell, at this point... maybe it is.?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Not even sure what to say today...

I did get a wonderful letter from an online friend telling me that this blog has been helping her and encouraged her to go get help. That means the world to me. That's the sole purpose of this. My biggest wish and prayer is that no one else would EVER have to deal with this. Or any other mental illness for that matter. I keep thinking back to my days in the hospital and remember now sick I was, and I'm getting better bit by bit, day by day. As none of us will ever be perfect, we can be "our" perfect. We can be healthy, happy and be able to experience joy. That's something I haven't felt in a long long time. But each day I see a glimpse of it, just a flash, which is enough to get me up in the morning. I'm not healed, but I do my thing. Sometimes, that's all we can ask for.

Friday, October 22, 2010

New Meds

So,my anxiety has been off the charts. I went to see my dr. today and she finally put me on Xanax instead of the Kolopin. We'll see how it works. I'm a little bit of a wreck... Hoping my depression doesn't come back. That's about all I have time to post right now. Hopefully more will come later. :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

It's a good day

So today we did a mindful meditation in therapy and it actually did wonders. We had done this several times before, but this time it was different. It's basically being mindful of your breath, thoughts, and being. You focus on just one breath at a time. As your mind wonders, which it will, just bring it back to the breath. Well, as usual, my mind did start to wonder and this time we were to embrace the thought, examine it and not push it away. One suicidal thought that had been plaguing me for years popped into my head... Instead of letting it attack me and take over, I investigated it, looked at it, reversed it and suddenly it lost all it's power! I was shocked by the entire experience. So, today has been a good day. The first truly good day in months. My soul is tired, but not broken. I'm tired, but hopefully not broken. I promised my son I will get better and I will keep that promise.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Rough one....

I can tell my depression is taking it's toll on my husband. Poor guy has to pick up my slack and my slack is horrible. Today the suicidal thoughts have been raging, but I wouldn't dare tell anyone in therapy, or they'll put me on a 5150 and hold me for days. I don't want to mention it to my husband because he has enough to worry about. I had a meltdown in the front yard today, enough that a neighbor came over to make sure I was doing ok. I'm not. I'm so sick and tired of being sick and tired. I don't want to talk to anyone, do anything. Just sit here... or preferably sleep. Everything is so black. And I don't know how to change the color.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Up and Down....

It's amazing how up and down emotions can go. This morning I work up motivated. I was going to clean the house, work on some of the therapy homework, but suddenly I realized that my brain wanted to do these things, but my body physically couldn't. Then after working on my office for a bit, making it all pretty, I started to cry. I invited my good friend over and we took a walk to a garage sale, then to the store. We laughed a bit and watched a movie. We talked and goofed off. Then she took off. Now... I'm down again. I feel like I need someone to manage me all the time. It's rough. But it IS getting better. Even if I don't believe it all right now, I will happen soon. It has to. I promised my son.

My promise to Gabriel

Gabriel,
My precious son. I promise I will get better and you will get the Mommy you deserve. You did not ask to come into this world, and we brought you here. I promise to make your life the best I can for you. I love you with all my heart and want nothing more than to be there for you, support you, care for you and be the best Mommy you could ever ask for. I ask for time and understanding and thank God that you are just a joy and gift to me and your Daddy. I will get better so we can have the lives I have dreamed of for all of us. I will get better so you won't have to grow up with a Mommy you are ashamed of. I will get better for you, because you deserve it. I will get better. I promise.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Exhausted... but looking back

It's amazing how tired this all can make you. I don't know if it's the depression, or the medication, but I am simply drained of everything. I wish I could figure out which meds are causing this, but I don't want to think of the consequences of not taking something during this experiment.

However looking back to where I was about a month ago, I am amazed. The intrusive thoughts have almost completely stopped when they were every other minute. The night I was admitted into the hospital, I was completely incapable of taking care of myself. I see that now, but didn't realize it at the time. So, I'm seeing such a huge improvement. It's still an uphill battle, but things are getting better. I want to be normal, whatever that is, but I can tell you it's not what I've been. I have so much more to say, but am simply too tired to type.

With that, I'm going to sleep. I cannot even fathom this level of exhaustion. It's insanity... no pun intended...

Monday, October 11, 2010

On a rough day... this is how I think...

I hate myself. I want to be a good mother, but I feel like I'm such a failure. People tell me I'm a great mother, but it doesn't matter. My thoughts are the loudest things I hear.

I know what I want out of life, but I can reach them? Right now I don't have any energy or effort to make them happen.

People say I need time for myself, but aren't those days gone now that I'm a mom? And what if the things I want in life are wrong? I don't trust myself at all. Never did. Well, I did maybe a long time ago, but not anymore.

My thoughts are all scattered. I'm anxious and I don't know why. I miss Gabe, but when I'm with him I get anxious. God, I hate this. I hate this person I've become. Completely scattered, without self assurance and lost.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Shopping

Went shopping today, as I'm in that lovely limbo between regular clothes and maternity clothing. I found a couple of shirts and pairs of pants. That lightened my mood, then I thought "where am I going to wear these?" Well, not to work anytime soon... I'll be wearing them to therapy. Hmmmm.

I do like the outpatient program I'm in though. It's odd how just talking in a group setting can help. I got a referral for an outside therapist and will be calling her tomorrow. The meds that I'm on have made me perpetually groggy, but I suppose that's a small price to pay. My intrusive thoughts have settled down tremendously and I have begun to recognize my anxiety when it hits. My depression is still up and down, but my doctors seem to think that another 6 months out of work is the best for me. Another 6 months..... that's a long time. But I need it to bet my head working straight again.

This month is Depression awareness month. Not many people know that because it's also Breast Cancer Awareness month. But I'm going to donate 10-15% of my Mary Lay sales to PPD awareness or Breast Cancer Awareness, whichever the client chooses.

I think that's it for now.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Something funny for a change....

This is so funny and has really made us all laugh a lot. Hope you enjoy...




Wednesday, October 6, 2010

So tired...

So, not that there is much to say today, I'll say what I can. I came home from the hospital program exhausted and slept and slept. Today has been a rougher day, but aren't they all when you're depressed? GOD! I'm so tired of hearing that word. Let's call it something else. Let's call it "happy challenged" or hell... "Louise". Anything but that same damned word I've been saying and hearing over and over and over for what seems like months now.

My husband is dancing in front of the CD player with our little boy in his arms, swaying back and forth. It brings a zen to the house. Externally I feel it, internally there is something else going on. I want internal zen. I want internal peace. I want internal happiness. But right now I can want and want, and that void waiting to be filled by all those things gets drier and drier, remaining empty, and sad.

I realized today that I don't know how to live in the moment. That was quite the realization for me. I don't know what it's like to just relax on the beach and take in that moment. My mind torments me by racing, taking me out of the sunshine and warmth, into panic and anxiety. So, I lose the moment. I think of the people around me, possibly judging me and my body type, to the work I should be doing at home, to even the small things like making sure that the cooler is right by me, in case I get thirsty, but then my hand will get wet when I get my drink and sand will stick to it, making a mess, then I won't drink my drink all at once, so I'll have to put it down and it will get hot.... Then I'll be thinking about how are we going to pack up, although we just got there. We'll grab this first, then this.... Meanwhile, the joy, fun and zen that was waiting to fill that void in my soul, go elsewhere, because there isn't any room for them to come in. The revolving door of racing thoughts was going too fast for them to slide in.

The baby is fussy. Poor guy is so cute even when he's fussy. Sometimes, I'll catch myself giggling at the cutest faces he makes when he has a fit. He doesn't mean to be cute at that point, he is trying to tell us "something is wrong people!" But that doesn't mean that he can't be adorable while trying.

He's going to go get his 2 months shots tomorrow. Poor little guy. I have to be at the hospital, so Danny will be taking him. He'll need some extra loves tomorrow.

Oh, I also found out today that memory is affected by being "happy challenged". I was wondering why I would have a conversation with someone and 20 minutes later, start up the conversation. I kept thinking, "Hell, I used to be smart, at least I thought I was... what is this?" "Louise" affects your memory, which is why I have to think about spelling words, talking is difficult, and I will stutter slightly. It will also affect concentration. Just in the time that I've been typing this, I've caught myself staring off into some fantastical place, mentally wandering around, just to get snapped back. There are so many elements to this, I can see why I can't just "snap out of it", or, "don't worry, you're a first time mom." or any of the other myriad of meaningful yet ultimately helpless sayings I get all the time from loving family and friends. There are no bootstraps for me to pull myself up with. My brain is broken right now. It can be fixed, but going out to take a walk, or just "lighten up" makes me feel like I'm going to a sword fight with a nail file.

Alright, I am still tired, but I've said my piece for anyone who cares. To those people who do read this, I thank you. Thank you for caring enough to see how I am doing. I wish I had better news other than the same daily drab. To those who have found solace or help in reading this, my heart does humbly thank you and for that I feel joy and happiness. So, thank you.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

In my journal today

While waiting for the day to start this morning at the hospital, I took out my journal and began to write. Here is what I wrote.

Why can't I just get better right now? Am I that f'ed up that it's going to take freaking months before this happens? It might even take years. Then precious Gabriel will have to grow up with a mother who loves him more than herself, but can barely express it. My love for him is so deep, yet I haven't been the one to feed him in weeks. I want to genuinely smile during the day. Not force it. I want peace and serenity in my soul. Why would I have a soul that belongs to God, yet have no joy in it?

I'm sitting at the hospital for the fourth day, away from the family to talk about my feelings I can hardly express. I know there has to be a reason for this and maybe one day I'll be blessed enough to see what that is. For now, I'll just numbly go through the motions... hoping for the best.

Monday, October 4, 2010

So, I'm supposed to journal...

This is what I wrote in my journal last night.... it's amazing how dark the mind can get. Again, up and down like a runaway roller coaster.

So, I'm supposed to journal in the hope that I'll one day be normal again. Whatever that means. Right now, I feel very trapped within myself. Inside is self hatred, loathing, sadness, discontentment, doubt and disgust, just to name a few. How do I change that? People, like friends and family can tell me over and over that these things are not true, but honestly, it doesn't matter. I see what I see and feel what I feel. The darkness surrounds me and it's as black as night. I know logically that I'm incredibly blessed with a loving husband, gorgeous child and our needs are met. But it's not the outside that I see. It's the inside.

I know if I were to die, people would mourn, but then sooner or later they would forget. Meanwhile, the pain would be over. You can always discuss the theological side of this debate, yet I am a Child of God. What would He think? Or did He know all along? I have a hard time believing you can surprise God.

One day, maybe I'll look back at this and do one of two things. Laugh or cry. I guess we'll have to see. And I'm speaking "NO" to the current intrusive thought that I won't read it again because I'll be dead.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

I'm an unwilling participant on this roller coaster

Some days are up... so days are down. Nighttime is usually the hardest. I had a great time with a friend today and once she left, my roller coaster started. I have taken all my meds... don't know what else to do, but maybe say something here. Yet, I sit here, unaware of what to say. The words coming to my mind are trapped within myself, hopeless, sad, finished. Had one intrusive thought today, but I guess that is a far cry from the hell I was living before. I am just sitting here... staring. No motivation, no desire. I know my passions, and usually pursuing those will bring me back home again, but they seem so far out of reach, they don't even seem to be a possibility.

I feel like someone just threw me on this vicious roller coaster, didn't strap me in and just hatefully let it go. Now I'm hanging on for dear life, slipping just a little with each dip, turn and roll.

I think I'll go to bed early tonight. I didn't get much sleep last night. Spent about 30 minutes trying to sleep, but crying because I miss my baby. We get to pick him up from his little vacation tomorrow. Grandma is busy spoiling him. I think I might cry again tonight... who knows? For now, I'm going to call it a night... maybe.

As I should be in bed... I'm posting more

So, I've now been to my outpatient therapy sessions for two days. It seems to be going well. The sessions go by pretty quickly and the people are nice. I felt pretty good for most of the day today. I think mostly due to the fact that I finally got to go to dance last night. First was ballet from 5-6:30, then Jazz from 6:45-10pm. Long night, but great. It is true that the hardest thing to do is to go, but once you're there, wherever that is... it's worth it.

I don't want to sound like a broken record about PPD etc. or sound like I'm living in a consistent pity party. I'm fighting this and will get through it. I miss my baby so much and cannot wait until he's back from his "Grandma's" house. In the meantime, I'm going to relax as much as possible, go to my Mary Kay Red Jacket meeting tomorrow and do some facials/ makeovers. Those are fun to me, so regardless of how I feel, or how hard it is to get out of bed, I'm going to do these things. God did not put me on this earth to suffer.... So, today is a better day and I'm going with that.

Had a great visit with my friend tonight, we watched "Battle Royale", a disturbing, but great movie, and we laughed and joked otherwise. That is what life should be like. Not in the colorless, hopeless world that I've been trapped in for 2.5 months. I'm fighting this.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Out of work for SO LONG!!

So, today I saw my psychiatrist and she said I should be out of work for at least another 3-4 months because my PPD etc. was so severe. Now I may not be back at work until the new year. She also recommended I take some time away from my sweet precious baby. :( Thankfully we have family and friends that are willing to step in and help. She said she normally doesn't suggest time away from the baby, but she thought it was for the best. He is at his Adoptive Grandmother (Yolanda's) house this weekend and I miss him so badly. This is just a vicious cycle..... But my anxiety is so high and my poor husband was doing everything. We also hired a nanny to help with everything.

I've been going to my outpatient program at the hospital and will be going for another 6-8 weeks. That coupled with the meds should put me back on track and I get to see my sweet LO on Sunday.

All in all.... freakin' PPD sucks!!!!

This is who I used to be

One day I will be this person again.  This is a piece that I choreographed and performed in for a showcase a few years ago.  The first part is dark because the lighting designer.... did something... but if you can hang through that, the lights come up and you can see... You can really start to see something around 1:10.

break


break

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Self Loathing...

Have you ever experienced this?  It's the hatred truly of yourself.  I see no good in me, although my husband, family and friends tell me differently.  They tell me I have a great sense of humor and a great laugh, yet deep underneath, there is a hatred that I cannot seem to tolerate or remedy.  Then I think, how can I love this precious little angel that is such a gift from God, and my husband, family and friends so much, when I loathe myself.  I hate the mental situation that I'm in.  I feel weak, powerless, tired.  My interests are gone.  I would rather sleep or sometimes just simply stare. 

I feel out of control, confused and dreadful.  I have no insights to this.  I don't know why I feel this toward myself.  It is partial hormones... blah, blah, blah, but that doesn't change the fact that my mind feels as if it is real... so therefore it is. 

I have NEVER had a plan for suicide, nor do I ever plan on having one, however, the intrusive thoughts keep telling me how much easier it would be if I weren't here.  The "thought monkeys" tell me that I'm a waste of space, skin, and air.  My husband tells me to counteract that with positive thoughts, yet I ask this.... How can I find positivity when I'm trapped in hell?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Word to the Wise...

Don't forget to take your medication.  I had an appointment this morning and could not figure out why I was having my intrusive thoughts and dreadful feelings again.  Then it occured to me... I hadn't taken my meds.  People... Heed my advice.  Take your meds.  Don't be a fool like me.  Now I could have a day of intrusive thoughts, depression and general funkyness.  That is all... carry on.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Let him sleep for when he wakes, he will move mountains.

I have wanted this decal since before our precious angel was born.  I just got it.  I cannot wait for it to get here.  It's going over his crib.  Probably shouldn't have due to money, but if it's for my baby (and this is kinda for me -:)  ), then it's worth it.  Wasn't too expensive anyway. 

Day 7 - Going in for Outpatient Care Assessment

So, this morning at 10 AM, my husband and I walk back into the hospital where I was kept for 4 days, in a sense against my will, in a sence completely willingly.  We are to meet with a social worker to see if I a am good candidate for this program.  They officially call it, "Back to work" or "Back to functioning living" program.  Hmmmm...

So, long story short, after about an hour of a seemingly endless amount of questions, I was admitted!  I am scheduled to start on Thursday.  For the next 6-8 weeks of my life, my days will look like this:

9:45-10:30 AM - Symptom Management (now, I have no idea what many of these things are, but I know I'm attending them...)

10:30-10:45 - Break

10:45-11:30 - Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

11:30-11:45 - Break

11:45- 12:30 PM - Group Psychotherapy

12:30-1:45 - Lunch

1:15-2:00 - Practical Coping

and HOME!

That is the next 6-8 weeks of my life.  Let's hope it works, because even today I had yet another intrusive thought of SIDS and fought with my precious husband, (well, not fought, but not agreed) about it.  He said, Gabriel will be fine and I said, "How do you KNOW that? You DON'T KNOW!"  That went on until he suggested I take another Kolopin and take a nap... which I did.

The torture in my mind is unbearable.  I'm up, then I'm down.  It's maddening, literally.  I really need this program to help me, or I see my life slipping through my fingers.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Day 6

Today I am supposed to call the hospital to set up my out patient treatment.  My medicine has made me incredibly groggy and given the the motor skills of a carrot.  I'm exhausted, although I slept the entire night.  My precious husband has been taking care of Gabe throughout the nights.  I don't know what I would do without him.

My friend forced me out of the house yesterday and I bought a new purse to give me a little joy.  It worked.  I like it a lot.

My intrusive thoughts has simmered down, then again, all thoughts had due to the meds.  But no thoughts are better than intrusive ones.  I read somewhere once that someone called them Thought Monkeys.  The come into your head and create chaos, just like a real monkey would.

Well, that's it for my update right now.  I think I need more sleep.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Our baby Gabriel is Born... and joy turned to despair

For those who are not aware of what PPD/ PPA/ and PPP are, here are some brief descriptions.

Postpartum Depression: (taken from the Mayo Clinic website)

Postpartum depression isn't a character flaw or a weakness. Sometimes postpartum depression is simply a complication of giving birth. If you have postpartum depression, prompt treatment can help you manage your symptoms — and enjoy your baby.  10-15% of women suffer from Postpartum depression.  Symptoms include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Intense irritability and anger
  • Overwhelming fatigue
  • Loss of interest in sex
  • Lack of joy in life
  • Feelings of shame, guilt or inadequacy
  • Severe mood swing
  • Difficulty bonding with the baby
  • Withdrawal from family and friends
  • Thoughts of harming yourself or the baby

    Postpartum Anxiety: The lesser known sister to Postpartum depression.  The actually percentages of women suffering from this varies from 10-50%.  Symptoms include:

    • Trouble concentrating and remembering things
    • Difficulties finishing everyday tasks
    • Trouble making decisions
    • Difficulty relaxing
    • Insomnia
    • Exhaustion
    • Feelings of extreme uneasiness for prolonged periods of time
    • Loss of appetite
    • Possible suicidal thoughts
    • Anxiety/panic attacks 

      Postpartum Psychosis:  This is usually the most rare of all postpartum disorders.  It effect one to two women per 1,000.  Symptoms include:

      • Hallucinations
      • Delusions
      • Illogical thoughts
      • Insomnia
      • Refusing to eat
      • Extreme feelings of anxiety and agitation
      • Periods of delirium or mania
      • Suicidal or homicidal thoughts 



      Here is my story:

      On July 19, 2010, our precious angel Gabriel came into the world.  He is 100% healthy, happy and beautiful.  As I was in the hospital, I felt emotionally great.  I remember even thinking, "I won't get PPD, I feel great."  I had no idea what awaited me and my family.  About 3 days after giving birth, I began to obsess about earthquakes and wondering what I would do if one hit while we were in the hospital.  Although I had a vaginal delivery, getting around was still very painful and difficult, so I just prayed over and over that the Lord would keep us safe.  Beyond that, I didn't think much about it.  We brought our beautiful baby boy home.  Then about 4 days later, I starting feeling "weepy" and considered it the "baby blues".  However, the "baby blues" never went away, in fact they started to get worse.  Scary worse.

      I remember the first thoughts I had were while I was out walking our dog.  I kept hearing in my head that Gabriel would be better off without me.  There are other better mothers out there and he deserves better than me.  I should just kill myself and then he could get a new mommy.  A better mommy.  It then escalated to events surrounding Gabe.  I would be holding my son and I would have flashes of his funeral and what it would look like and what he would look like in his coffin.  I knew what I was going to say and how I would say goodbye.  I was 100% convinced he was going to die of SIDS.  No one could convince me otherwise.  Every time I would walk into his room, I would see that sweet angel sleeping in his crib, only in my mind, his crib would turn into a coffin and I would see his fragile little body lying in it.  I even had songs picked out that I would play at his funeral.

      I found I could not ride in the car with him due to the extreme anxiety.  One day on the way home from the doctor's office, I knew I had him in the car with me, yet I had a panic attack that I left him sitting in the parking lot.  I also believed we would be in an accident and Gabe would be hurt or worse yet, killed.  Irrational thoughts like these became so common they began to effect my daily life to such a degree I was terrified to leave the house.  Essentially creating a prison.

      On one day in particular, I was pumping with my eyes closed and I just knew I was going to open my eyes and be staring down the barrel of a gun.  That was the moment I finally mentioned to my husband that something wasn't right.

      We started making appointments with my dr and over a period of two and a half weeks, I visited her 6 times.  Each time, she would prescribe something, but it just never seemed to be helping.  Finally, on Wednesday, Sept. 22, my doctor suggested I go to the hospital.  I had mentioned to her that the night before I had been holding a pair of scissors and I had the thought of how easy it would be to cut myself with them.  So, she obviously became very alarmed.  We called the hospital and in I went.

      Day 1:

      We got to the ER at 2 PM and was almost immediately brought in.  I was questioned by several people, then sent to a room to wait for the dr.  He said he would like to keep me to monitor me for a couple of days.  Ok.  I figured that would happen.  About 4 hours later a nurse came in and told me that they were putting me on a 72 hour hold, which essentially means I no longer have a say in coming or going.  They were keeping me no matter what.  I immediately burst into tears.  By 10:30 that night they had a room for me.

      Now here is where the story does get darker.  The only room they had, and it is protocol, was in the Acute Psych Ward.  So, I was sent to the acute ward with poor souls suffering from schizophrenia, paranoia and extreme conditions.  I went straight into my room and began to question... What have we done?  Do I really belong HERE?  I tried to sleep, but couldn't due to the man screaming, "What are they doing to me?  Make them stop!  WHY?"  That was coupled with pipes banging and people roaming the halls all night saying things like 1+2= Black.  Needless to say, I stayed to myself, confused and lonely.  My room didn't have anything more than a nightlight, so I tried to sleep, but could not.  I still remember the sound of the plastic mattress and plastic pillow as I tried to get comfortable, yet never could.  I looked in the mirror, wondering what had gone wrong.  This was supposed to be the happiest time of my life, yet I'm staring into a barely lit mirror in an acute psych ward.

      Day 2:

      I finally gather the courage to venture out of my room and immediately see one of the patients who promptly calls me a bitch and begins to make fun of my nail polish.  I thought, "Oh, well... in her mind 1+2= Black.  So whatever."  I get my tray of food, find a spot to sit and another patient named Jose, reaches over and begins to steal food off my tray.  I find strength I didn't think I had at the time and firmly say, "No!  That is your food, this is mine.  Don't touch it!"  After a couple of times of telling him that, he retreats back to his own tray.

      Now, redemption.  At 1:30 PM there is a knock at my door.  My nurse said, "Are you ready to go downstairs?"  Downstairs was the area where normal people have simply hit a hard time in their lives, either via drugs, depression, injury etc.  I immediately jump up, answer "YES!" and gather all of my things.  I believe I accomplished this is three seconds flat.  Before I knew it I was being whisked downstairs.

      It was so much better.  There is where we began my medicine.  I was put on Kolopin, Prestiq, and Ambien,  Oh I slept so much better that night.  The groups were better as people were lucid.  I was happy to be there, but unhappy still of the situation.

      Day 3 and 4:

      A simple blur.  All days ran together.  My husband came to visit me every day from 6 PM to 8 PM.  I began to recongize more and more about what had been bothering me and my diagnosis.  My anxiety was so high, that is triggered my depression and the psychosis.  The intrusive thoughts were also brought on by anxiety.  So, as we began to control the anxiety, the only way I can describe it is, life began to flow again.  The colors seemed brighter and the darkness lifted.  On the 4th day, during visiting a dear friend came to see me and it was while she was there I found I was not going to be placed on the 14 day hold, I could in fact go home right then.  We began the discharge paperwork and my friend decided to play a joke on my poor husband.  She told him I was going to have to stay another day, yet little did he know I was getting packed.  I will never forget the look on his face when he saw me with my luggage walking toward him.  Pure joy.

      Day 5:

      It is still a struggle.  I cannot say that those 4 days fixed everything, but they did put a lot of things into perspective.  I am on an uphill battle, but I'm willing to fight it for my family.  I still have to go to the hospital every day for the next 6 weeks for 6 hour sessions of therapy, but I am more than willing to do it.  I was in such a dark place and it is a fine line between the intrusive thoughts and actions.

      If you think you might have PPD/ PPA/ PPP, PLEASE, seek help.  It may not be comfortable, but it could be the difference between life and death.