A lot has been going on lately. My youngest started his special pre-school after the child study team finally decided to test him, and low and behold he came up autistic. Quelle surprise! We were all sick with a “flu like virus” for a week and half (which I’m pretty sure just means we had the flu). And it has snowed every week since the beginning of the year. In addition to the normal ups and downs of having three special needs kids and keeping up with my editing job, you would think at this point in the year I would be at my wits end. And up until this year you would be right.
But something amazing happened to me in January. Something that was long overdue. I finally went to see a psychiatrist about my anxiety and depression, and he, in his infinite wisdom, put me on anti-depression/anti-anxiety meds…AND THEY WORKED!
They didn’t just work a little either. After three days on half a dose I felt completely different! What does that mean for me? Let me explain.
My whole life there has been this running commentary in the back of my head. Anytime I would have to think over a problem or something would go wrong, my brain would start working out how to fix it and/or how it could be worse or how it was worse or what tragedies would befall me or people I love because of whatever it was I was thinking about. This kept going until a new thing would pop into my head or needed addressing.
I didn’t do it on purpose. I didn’t want it to be happening. But I couldn’t make it stop.
Three days into the meds something amazing happened. My mind was suddenly silent. The running commentary was gone. The constant chatter of a thousand worries had quieted. For the first time in my life, I could sit in peace and think about nothing or (and this is even more amazing) I could think about something, and then I could stop! My worries and cares no longer sat on top of me all day. I could still think about problems I was having or try and work out solutions, but the thoughts no longer haunted me hours later.
The closest comparison I can come up with is imagine you have tinnitus. There is a constant buzzing in your ears 24/7. Now imagine one day…it just stopped. The feeling is incredible.
I never really knew what other people meant when they said “relax” or when people talked about being at peace until now. I thank God my husband kept on me to go and talk to the doctor and that the first thing he prescribed me worked. There is still a lot in my life that needs fixing and organizing, but now I feel like I have the presence of mind to do it.
I am sharing this post because I know there are a lot of people out there who are afraid to go to a therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist because of the stigma of mental diseases. I am here to tell you that you have nothing to be ashamed of and everything to gain from getting help. Anxiety and depression can be fixed, sometimes with therapy, sometimes with medication. I lived my whole life not knowing what having a peaceful mind meant and now I do. And I couldn’t be happier. Please, if you think you need help, get help. You are worth it. 🙂
Title image by hopeimages.