I’m in it. I am trying to push through and be #decidedlySane. However this PMDD is a tenacious affliction, a mind eraser and a killer of aspiration. I’m feeling inadequate and although I set myself up to be active and healthy this week, 2 out of 3 mornings I’ve left the house without my gym bag, have forgotten to take my birth control pill and/or have forgotten to bring my food to work. All these things laid out for me to grab before I head out of the door. Something happens….I get a jolt of anxiety and bolt out of the house to catch my bus and once on the bus I realize that I’ve left my safety gear on the kitchen table. I then become totally consumed with fear. How will I manage the day? How will I get through?
Sometimes when I’m feeling great I’ll unintentionally deter from my self-care regimen. I start mixing up my schedule to add some extra fun time. All in all that shouldn’t be a problem for the average person but for my PMDD and me, time management absolutely must be in order.
I liken my responsibility to self-care to childcare. With a small child you need to get a sitter to go out for adult time. My PMDD needs a nanny. Paying attention to myself in between the PMDD by taking birth control, maintaining a healthy diet, exercising regularly and making sure I get plenty of rest allows me better access to my me time all month.
The Silver Lining of my PMDD is that it wants me to pay attention to myself so I can help keep the symptoms at bay. It helps me reign in the ropes when I see myself going too far off the self-help path. I don’t like to suffer and sometimes it’s completely unavoidable, but it hurts a little less when I am aware of being kind and loving to myself and in good spirits.
Tonight I will meditate and tap into another source of healing my spirit.
Writing about it helps… #decidedlySane.
I didn’t want to take Prozac after my experience with Lexapro. I wanted to deal with my PMDD in isolation. However, I am a mother and being emotionally available was a challenge. I am a partner and I couldn’t show love or interest in much outside of my state of being. I also had a high-pressure sales job, so showing up and being on point was key to maintaining financial security
My partner suggested that I talk to my doctor and possibly find relief. Beat down by the realization that my life was falling apart talking about Prozac was a hard pill to swallow.
In retrospect I truly believed that I agreed to take this pill to be social and keep my shit together, but in actuality I took this pill because I was tired of cleaning up the after math of PMDD. My life really was spiraling out, and I was exhausted and living my life at half staff. Trying to keep it together for the 10 days after getting off of the PMDD train from Crazy Town as I referred to it, I’d be manic making sure I showed up for life so that I could retreat effortlessly when I couldn’t. There was a lot of pressure on everyone around me to get on board with my schedule. I certainly am grateful to those who stayed close despite my trips.
Thank you universe for timing is everything. If I were in the midst of PMDD I’d be feeling trapped and angry that I had no choice but to stay at home. I’d probably fight myself between becoming stationary on the sofa with a cup of tea or pushing a shovel throughout the the entire block of homes to get my endorphins to kick in….I’m sure my neighbors would be appreciative, however it’s completely unnecessary today.
Ha, the in-betweens of PMDD help me see that I can just be still and that it’s ok.
PMDD humor is a sure sign that we don’t hate ourselves for needing a little extra in self care.
I’ve been journaling for about ten-eleven years consecutively now and today I realized that I have PMDD forgetfulness. I just made that term up, but I never realized it. Ask me about something in PMDD and I may not be able to access random memory. Ask me the same question outside of PMDD and it’s like bing! I’ve got the information.
So I’ve decided to go back in time and read my journals around PMDD. I think a little investigation would be appropriate if I want to try to understand my brain trip when my hormones shift.
Knowledge is power!
I want to share part of my PMDD story before Prozac because I have to divulge that I had no idea that I had PMDD for a big chunk of my life. I just thought I had bad PMS and in retrospect no one had information on the matter.
- I’d eat a little more.
- I’d drink a little more alcohol.
- I’d press snooze a little more often during the week.
- I’d be so irritable that I would isolate and break plans with friends.
- I began to loose interest in things I actually cared about: brunch in NYC happened less and less around PMDD or “PMS.”
- I noticed that maybe I saw my friends once a month if that…people began to drift away. Perhaps it was I? I definitely felt alone.
I was diagnosed with depression. I was prescribed Lexapro (http://www.webmd.com/drugs/drug-63990-Lexapro+Oral.aspx?drugid=63990)
For a short period of time, there was an upswing perod, yet I had an extrmeley hard time adjusting to Lexapro. I felt as if I were unraveling throughout the first month and I felt very skittish and paranoid. I am normally a very confident, strong willed New Yorker – Skittish was a joke of a side affect! Being paranoid was a head-trip.
I proceeded to take 20mg daily for a year. I was able to be social but not quite fun to be around. I was “angry dunk girl” and completely pissed off about gaining 20lbs. I was angry with myself for needing to be on a pill to be “ok.” Yet, I was nowhere near “ok.” I went to therapy and against everyone’s advice decided that this little pill was not for me and I weaned myself off…I don’t suggest anyone do this without your doctors support. This was the beginning of the end. A complete transformation occurred and I was unrecognizable not only to myself, but to those closest to me.
I thought I might be bipolar (http://www.webmd.com/bipolar-disorder/default.htm) because the mood swings were so incredibly obvious and painful. I decided that perhaps I should change my diet, eat healthier, stop drinking since alcohol and Lexapro was not a great combo, my “PMS” and alcohol was not bringing me any solace and I felt the need to hold on to some shred of dignity. So much damage had been done in my career and friendships…I was desperate to be healthy, but didn’t want to take another anti-depressant.
Prozac . . .
I’m working pushing past feelings of dread, rage and utter sadness.
My body is tight.
My shoulders feel like they are being pressed down by a ton of weights. It’s as if I’m trying to stand and someone is holding me down. Feels like someone’s knee is jammed in between my shoulder blade….I am so uncomfortable in my own skin and I want to scream.
I am writing little snippets here and there when anger comes through with clarity and my words want to be spoken. I want to start something. I need a victim. The woman next to me has a cold and is relentless with the sniffling…I want to tell her to cut it out.
How about I tell you the truth? Here’s how I’m doing. I feel like I have an invisible cable wrapped around my chest and my arms are heavier than lead. I may as well be left for dead tied up on the rail road tracks that run above my head at the office. I fantasized a little about the idea of getting run over and smashed to smithereens by the 5p Amtrak to NYC…..anything is better than this feeling.
I took 4 breaks today to do breathing exercises that on most days work…not today.
Today is the worse of it…which means that the end is near. That’s the silver lining of PMDD. Just when it feels like I can actually act out the scenes of destroying myself, someone else or beating someone to a pulp I bleed. And the veil lifts. Most months I take no prisoners. Today? It’s still young….going to YOGA to free my mind and body from the grips of #PMDD
Self Care Check List:
I slept 7 hours last night.
I washed my hair
I wore mascara and lipstick
I drank only one real cup of coffee
I drank a lot of water
I actually went to work and pretended to work in between really productive moments
I attempted to communicate with my friends
I avoided difficult thought provoking conversations.
In this moment I am miserable. Who knows what the next moment will bring, but it does give me a sense of hope and joy to know that I pushed through these past near 2 hours now to write this.
I’m actually feeling a bit fulfilled.