Yes, I was that incessant child that barely seemed to take a breath, never allowing much of a response from anyone, I was always talking. I was so young and knew so little of the world, yet, I still found so much that needed to be discussed.
This trait was not to be lost in my youth. Through the school years, I was either getting myself in trouble for talking when I should have been paying attention to the teacher, or, I would be the one to answer all of the teacher's questions, and sometimes both in the same classes. When high school English took to class debate, I was generally the first to jump in, get heard and was determined to be declared the winner.
My first real job out of college was running a sales office for Cutco, which meant as a manager, it was my job to tell other people how to talk to other people (even better than just talking myself). And as a member of many-a small church groups and bible studies, when discussion time roles around and the first question is posed, generally every one else remains quiet and shifts their eyes on me.
I wonder sometimes if I have had a tendancy to talk to much. But on the other hand, I have been told by several individuals that they enjoy listening to me.
So it is strange to me, when my conversation-ability hits a dry streak. It seems that as of late, not only do I not have alot to say, but more so, I have a hard time saying things. Even with my special gal-pals, with whom I could generally spend hours upon days and never run out of things to discuss. I realized today, that this could be another symptom of the depression that I seem to be experiencing.
I have hemmed and hawed about whether or not to put this often-privately held matter in a public forum such as this blog. I decided that by sharing it, I would be able to journal my thoughts and experiences, as well as providing a testimony for others who may experience some or all of the same symptoms. You see, I've been through this before...
... I was 18, my mother had passed away only 6 months earlier and I was in my first year at college, a mere 300 miles from home. As winter set in, I had a complete falling out with my 3 roommates during finals that resulted in an hour long screaming match and, ultimately, my finding of another room, by myself. I had more than a full load with a full time boyfriend, work study, band, choir, flute choir, voice and flute lessons, sorority rush, normal classes and Calculus with an EVIL professor bent on failing as much of the class as possible. The school doctor was seeing me regularly enough for various illnesses and infections that he started to hone in on some of the other things that were going on. He and the school therapist provided me with an education. The brain naturally produces a hormone called seratonin, which is what helps us to deal with stress. I was clearly overloaded and over stressed. I started taking Zoloft, went to the therapist for counciling once a week, and started to improve.
6 month later, I felt equipped and ready to stop taking the medicine. I followed the recommended weaning process, making a slow and gradual reduction of the dose until I could stop taking it all together. During this time I became unexplainably ill. My poor father had to ask me the dreaded question.."could you be pregnant?" And it was even harder for me to answer him with a ..." I don't think so!" Maybe I had developed ulcers. Eventually we realized that it was the withdrawal from the Zoloft that was causing this sickness. I was glad to be past it, and would hope not have to experience that again.
So here we are, in the present time, and I'm really not feeling myself. What I am experiencing?
- I can't focus, and consequently, find myself a huge to-do list, that just keeps getting longer and never are any of my tasks even getting started.
- I will have a though of something I need to do, or something I want to say, but as I get up to do it, or start to say it, I loose what "it" was.
- I have a very short fuse, especially with my children. But since I have been lacking in motivation or energy lately, I am not providing them with the guidance they need, and then I find myself upset that they aren't doing what it is that I didn't instruct them to do.
- I am emotional and could cry at the drop of a hat, receipt of a silly email, or viewing of a rediculous commercial. (I REALLY don't like that)
- As I said before, my conversation-ability has been suffering. I struggle to contribute thoughts, and if I do have a thought, rarely am I able to effectively communicate as I intend. I have even found myself saying things in such a way that my meaning is completely turned around, and I fear that I am risking offenses. Yet, somewhat feeling as if I can't really help it.
- I am confident of God's love surrounding me through this time. My faith is much stronger than it was when I was 18, and God's works of grace have been so evident in my life in these last 13 years. My body and emotions, and even my mind may be shaken, but God will not.
What am I doing about it?
- I met with a new Naturopath yesterday. I am scheduled to get blood work done, which will help to evaluate if there is a defficiency that could be causing some of these issues. I suspect that I am lacking in vitamin D. She is advising me to suppliment with Fish Oil, Probiotics and 5-HTP (a natural seratonin booster) to begin with.
- I am aware that this is what is happening to me. Although awareness does not stop me from blowing up at the kids (I wish it were that easy), it does keep the outbursts in check. It also allows my darling, fantastic, wonderful, heroic husband to know when he needs to step in, so I can back away for a few minutes.
- As much as I am able, I would like to get out of the house at least once a day. Tonight, I took Dex (our dog) for a 15 minute walk around the block, by myself. And that does help.
- I am going to try to make my bed time more consistent, and I will attempt to avoid hitting snooze. I haven't accomplished this yet.
- I am sharing and I am asking for prayer. I am determined not to keep this to myself or to go through it by myself.
As a culture, with the lifestyles we embrace and the foods we eat, more and more men and women are finding themselves in this same boat. It is easy to write off the symptoms as part of life to be tolerated. But it doesn't have to be that way. I could easy say that all this symptoms would be expected for anyone in my situation, with 4 kids under 8 and homeschooling. But I know that this is not who I am, nor is this how I will live. We will find a way to make a change in me.