Eleanore Vs. Anxiety Drugs That Give her Anxiety (and Some Other Stuff)

Dear little planets with little people,

A while ago I said that there has been a turn in my health that I wasn’t quite ready to explain. Well, if the suspense has been killing you (as I’m sure it hasn’t) ache no longer.

As many know I suffer from Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder and PTSD. That’s quite a bit for one little brain to take. For the most part, my mental health has always taken a back seat due to the 12 physical diagnoses that I already combat. However, I have battled the mental ailments as well, unaware that the whole time I was losing and only getting worse.

I grew up in a very abusive home and therefore was unable to fully express myself or to ask for help, because every time I did, it lead to screaming, punishment, and ultimately my regret. The few times I was so overwhelmed that I could not hide my panic attacks or stop them from taking me over entirely, I was met with threats of having my family call the police on me or being screamed at to “shut up.” It was far from pleasant, and I more often than not would just run away from home to cry either in a parking lot, while driving aimlessly, or at a friend’s house.

Now that I am living in a far safer environment I thought for certain my mental conditions would improve immensely. I was terribly wrong. As it turns out, suppressing them for 25 years was not exactly healthy. Surprise! After many horrible and dramatic long distance fights with my family, having my grandfather pass away and my physical health declining much to my dismay, I erupted. My panic, anxiety, chest pains have all worsened as my composure has fallen away to reveal a very unwell and scared girl.

This is a very large part of why I cannot handle making videos anymore, at least for the time being, though I desperately want to get back to it. It’s also half of why I ended up in the ER two weekends ago. Every little activity lately is terribly stressful, whether it is working at my fairly simple job or just trying to not freak out from the pangs in my chest that come and go. I am altogether overwhelmed with panic and it is terrifying. While I have been like this most of my life, I have also been very talented at putting up a fairly normal front. But now, because I simply no longer have the ability or energy, I cannot.

I’ve been feeling more sick. I’ve been crying and breaking down at work. I constantly feel hopeless and more close to an out of order robot rather than a human.

BUT. THERE IS GOOD NEWS!…Kinda.

After one of my last especially horrific breakdowns I ended up being put into contact with a behavioral health center at one of the hospitals here in St. Louis that doesn’t require insurance. I cannot tell you how incredibly grateful I am to have accidentally found this place. After an extensive assessment I was admitted into the program. Now I have a psychiatrist and a social worker. For the first time in my life, I have real mental help, and it finally has given me some hope that though I am very sick right now I most certainly will not be forever.

Just yesterday I was given my very first long term anxiety medication called Lexipro. It’s a tiny little white pill, but in my experience, the tiniest pills are the most intense. Aside from the anxiety I have regarding just about everything, I have also had negative experiences with all kinds of drugs. I’ve been given quite a few strange medications in my life for various different issues, and while some have benefited me greatly, others have made me hallucinate, break out in blisters, temporarily lose control of my hands and so on. These side affects aren’t charming to say the least.

Sooooooooo hopefully it isn’t surprising that yesterday as I sat on my couch with the tiny white pill in my hand, I was having major anxiety issues about whether I really wanted to take it or not. That’s right, my anxiety pill gave me anxiety. Talk about ironic. My boyfriend, who despite sincerely trying to help doesn’t, tried to reason with me by saying, “If a doctor prescribed it to you it’s safe.” Oh, if only that were true. While we’d like to think doctors are capable of always prescribing the perfect remedies for every issue, they don’t, and it’s not always their fault. There’s no possible way to figure out how every person will react to every drug or treatment, and unfortunately, the best treatments are generally discovered by trial and error. If anything, I was at least thankful that my psych told me to contact him if the drug makes me feel unwell. So far, it mostly makes me feel sleepy and nauseous. My brain is still spinning out of control, and everything feels scary and big, but hopefully with time and a tremendous deal of help, I’ll be on track to getting better.

As the psychiatrist gets to know me better, he also has to unwrap the clusterfuck that is my family history. While we haven’t talked about it much yet, I have been thinking about it a great deal, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m about 90% sure my grandmother also has severe anxiety disorder and depression. Considering she too was abused, suffered through events I cannot comprehend and lived through World War II which tore apart her country, that isn’t shocking. What is shocking is that unlike me, she was never expressive about how she felt, aside from the fact that she was constantly overcome with worry about everything and anything. Back then, I assumed she was just a worrier as most grandmothers are. Now, as I dive into my defunct family tree, I realize that she did not just worry as a grandmother; she had the same illnesses plaguing her mind as I do now, and was never able to get help. Now, at 92 years old and suffering from Alzheimer’s, she is living in a home and finally getting the proper attention she has needed long before her Alzheimer’s ever set in, and I’m at least thankful for that.

The fact that my grandmother has lived 92 years with a mind similar to my own has left me awestruck. 26 years in my opinion is long enough to drive anyone insane when living with severe depression and anxiety without proper care. I’m even more astounded when I remember that her brother committed suicide in his 60’s, and we can almost be sure he suffered from these illnesses as well since there is more evidence coming to surface about the fact that depression and anxiety disorders can be genetically linked.

The fact that I no longer have health insurance or a way to get it is one major subject fueling my constant fear. However my social worker is actively searching to find alternate ways of getting help, because while it’s wonderful that I am now receiving mental health help, I’m still in dire need of physical help. But one thing at a time, right?

Lastly and slightly off topic,  I would like to note that I just watched The Little Prince on Netflix and it was absolutely beautiful and delightful in every way. I was enamored with it from the start and remained so through the whole thing. It’s enchanting, sweet, meaningful and magical, so if you like beautiful movies, it is surely one to watch.

the-little-prince-quote.jpg

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “Eleanore Vs. Anxiety Drugs That Give her Anxiety (and Some Other Stuff)

  1. I was on Lexapro for a couple of years, through high school and for a bit in college as well. I was lucky and didn’t get any side effects and I think it helped me when I wasn’t doing well. I hope it helps you too! If its not the drug for you, there are a lot of other meds out there. Between me and my sister, we’ve tried a couple of different antidepressants and anti-anxiety meds so I can tell you with confidence that there are options.
    My family has a lot of mental health issues and it is really scary to look at a family tree sometimes so I understand a little of how you feel about that.
    Good luck Eleanore!
    -Max

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Max, that honestly makes me feel a lot better. My boyfriend’s 88 year old grandma who has AFib and other heart issues actually takes it too and says it hasn’t messed with her too much which also helps. For me putting any drug into my body is just so frightening and worries me, but my psych did assure me as well that if I don’t like it there are other things to try. For so long I rejected anti-depressants and meds thinking I didn’t need them but now I feel dumb because I really needed them ten years ago. But as I said, better than waiting till 92 like my grandma. I can’t get over how she survived so long this way…I feel like I’m coming undone like Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas. That’s interesting about your family, for so many years they said there were no genetic links for mental illness and now it’s coming up that there’s tons. It really blows my mind. Thank you for all your support and reply, I’m really appreciative ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I haven’t the slightest idea how this ended up on a different post thought I’m sure this is for the Explosive one. Either way, I’m glad you resonate with my words, though I wish you didn’t have to and weren’t also struggling with your health.

      Like

      1. You are struggling more than I am. I believe my worst days are behind me. So many things have changed since I first got sick, that it is impossible to tell why I have “improved.” (That’s in quotes because it is also impossible to know how much is improvement and how much is limiting my energy expenditure and managing myself better.) May you soon deal with the same mystery: better.

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s