Today was a day like many other days in my typical existence...
I got lost while driving around and around and around Saint Paul because for some reason I plugged in the completely wrong address into google maps last night and went to the Westside instead of Dale and University. They are not the same.
When I picked child up from friend's house (really a giant and terrifying collection of twisting corridors leading to a mysterious apartment whose number I cannot remember) she was quite tired. Walked the long long way through the labyrinth (avoiding the minotaur) in the rain to the car before discovering I left my keys in the third floor apartment.
Back up with super tired child now growing more and more agitated; found the keys in the bathroom on the sink (naturally).
Driving home with a child screaming. Taking her out of the car screaming. Putting her on the bed screaming. For 2 hours solid. Tired out of her mind and unable to calm down enough to sleep.
Instead of spending afternoon studying and organizing things and practicing horn, spent afternoon calming the child and engaging in important snuggling activities.
Totally messed up during a rehearsal with the concert band I play with. Everyone else was playing the third movement; I was playing the fourth. But i did it with great gusto. Hmmm... I didn't think the fourth horn part was so exposed in this movement! For some reason the conductor didn't bat an eye in my direction or mention the very loud and percussive horn countermelody in the middle of a lyrical oboe solo.
A fairly run of the mill day. And it wasn't too stressful. It felt like a normal bunch of things going slightly wrong, but it did not derail me as it might have in the past. It feels so very different to feel back to normal. I am reminding myself that this is what it feels like when I start to properly treat my Depression and it is well controlled. This is not an invitation to quit treating the Depression. This is the Beginning.
So I started routinely taking medication in early June. Now it is Early October. Four months to figure it out (for the moment). That is not an instant cure. That is not "take two aspirin and call me in the morning." There was a trial and error and error and error and error period.
Here was the progression starting in May of 2013 and ending with October of 2013
1. sertraline 100mg
2. sertraline 150mg
3. sertraline 150mg, bupropion 150mg
4. sertraline 150mg, bupropion 300mg
5. sertraline 150mg bupropion 450mg
6. sertraline 150mg bupropion 600 mg (oops)
7. sertraline 150mg bupropion 450mg
This is the most me-like my brain has felt in a long long time. If this current cocktail works this well on most days I will be most pleased. But it is worth remembering how much tinkering was involved in getting things right. And knowing that things will probably change and we will have to do that again.
It's just like laundry and making the bed and doing the dishes and brushing your teeth... something that just keeps on happening and is never done. Kind of a chore, but what can you do. For now here is what I have found. I do best when I take my meds in the morning around the same time (duh). The sertraline/bupropion mix does much better than just the sertraline. They're good buddies. They like working together. I also do better when I have a regular work schedule, a weekly routine instead of a nebulous schedule on a complicated four-week rotation.
I had a meeting with my boss today going over all the things I have developed in the course of creating my new job and I thought WOW, I totally kick ass. I do not feel bad at all that my teaaching style is totally different from the teacher who preceded me because I found my own rhythm, which works much better than trying to follow someone else's dance steps. Take THAT, Depression. I have the big picture back. I can make plans for the future. I so badly want to say I AM CURED. Because that is what it feels like.
Do diabetics have this too? When their medications are working properly or their diabetes is well controlled do they suffer from the delusion that they are cured? There are plenty of people who require better living through chemistry just to have a quasi-normal life. I still don't know why I object to being one of them. It's probably because in the back of my head I think that all of this is just imaginary and I should get over myself and I should be able to cope as well as anyone else without meds. Ugh. I would never say that to anyone else. I should think carefully before saying crappy things like that to me.
Grateful Crap: Having a person who knows their stuff when it comes to medication helping to systematically figure out what works for me and not having to do this on my own. Also: normal normal normal!
Walked some amount (I dropped my pedometer and put it in my purse and it stopped recording my steps)
Took meds (150mg sertraline, 450mg bupropion
didn't freak out about stuff
spent more time "in the moment" than I typically do (I can't explain why or how, but it feels true)
Quaker, teacher, parent,