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For those who remember me, you know how severe my depression was. For those who DON'T remember me, I'll fill you in. Depression is genetic for me. I started showing depressive signs when I was five after the second death of a sister. I don't remember any of that time period, so the first time I remember being depressed I was eight. I even wrote journal entries like, "If I had one wish in the entire world, I would be happy for just one day. Because I've never been happy before and I want to know what it's like." (That bitch teacher gave me a check plus and didn't tell my parents!) I was finally medicated when I was 10. I continued on meds through high school and college, and though I was still depressed, I was able to function. This particular MAJOR depressive episode started in February 2009, my last semester of college. After I graduated from college, I worked in an office. One day, everything stopped. I broke down. I honestly don't remember what happened that day. The only thing I remember is my Mom picking me up because I was unable to drive. I really haven't been able to function since then. I went on disability for severe depression and anxiety not long after that.

But it's gone. My depression is gone.

After adding Effexor ER, I started doing well. I did even better at 225 mg. (I went up to 300 mg, but had a hypomanic episode, so I have to go back down to 225 mg and we added Topamax. I hope going down on dosage of Effexor ER won't hurt me.) And now I'm doing amazing! I still have some bad days and some depressed habits, but for the first time in my life, I am actually... normal. I was a happy depressed person, so you can imagine how happy I am as a normal person! It's like I see things for the first time. It feels like I've been holding my breath my entire life and now I'm able to let it out and breathe. I do still have severe anxiety that I need to work on... but I'll get there with my anxiety as well.

After I get used to this new med combo, I plan on finding a part-time job. (They allow you to do that on disability since they WANT you to get back to work!) I've wanted to work ever since I left my job. I could not be more excited to get a job and go back to work!!!

MOST IMPORTANTLY... If you are out there and you feel hopeless and you feel like it will never go away, I am living proof that it can. I was always hopeful that mine would go away for the most part, but I never expected to be in complete remission. After all, if ECT didn't make it go away, what would? (I probably won't be in remission FOREVER, but I'm more than thrilled to be in remission for right now.) I know how difficult living with depression is. I know it's hard to have hope sometimes. But don't give up! You can and will make it through this. It might not be tomorrow, next week, next month, or even next year. But it will go away with hard work, the right meds, the right support system, and as much hope as you can muster. Don't give up.

If you ever want to talk about your depression privately to somebody who won't judge and who has been there, feel free to message me. I'm more than happy to listen. (Or give advice, if that's what you need.) Not everybody has a great support system... and I'm more than happy to be a part of yours.

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I kind of suspected that might be the case when I read this this morning, but I didn't want to go around diagnosing. Unfortunately, for most of us, it's never completely over. It's a process of management of symptoms. When people declare that they are cured, it's usually a sign of hypomania.

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11 minutes ago, jt07 said:

I kind of suspected that might be the case when I read this this morning, but I didn't want to go around diagnosing. Unfortunately, for most of us, it's never completely over. It's a process of management of symptoms. When people declare that they are cured, it's usually a sign of hypomania.

Thanks for not diagnosing me. I would have been maaaaaaad and totally told you off! (The anger would have lasted about three hours until I realized you were right! Then I would have bawled and begged for your forgiveness.) I AM doing much better. Better than I ever have before! That is no lie! Even when I crashed from my last hypomanic episode and was exhausted, I didn't feel depressed at all! But I'm going to have to wait and see how this new med cocktail plays out to say whether or not I'm in remission.

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3 minutes ago, jt07 said:

I'm glad you are doing better. I wish you a lot of luck, and hope your new cocktail is the best yet for you.

Thank you very much. I actually do think I am in remission... but I still have to wait and see!

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10 hours ago, jt07 said:

I kind of suspected that might be the case when I read this this morning, but I didn't want to go around diagnosing. Unfortunately, for most of us, it's never completely over. It's a process of management of symptoms. When people declare that they are cured, it's usually a sign of hypomania.

^THIS.  Is exactly what I had been thinking also.

 

I'm glad you are feeling better though.

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7 hours ago, melissaw72 said:

^THIS.  Is exactly what I had been thinking also.

 

I'm glad you are feeling better though.

Thanks for not diagnosing me. Being hypomanic, I probably would have told you off, then regretted it so much that I would cry and cry when I got back to a baseline. Of course, anybody could ask me, "Are you sure you're not hypomanic?" But saying, "I think you may still be hypomanic" would have totally sent me off!

Edited by daisy
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Okay, I assume I'm still rapid cycling, but at the moment, I'm NOT hypomanic. At least I show no signs or symptoms of being so!

I do not feel depressed at all... I feel like I'm in remission.

However, as I've said, I only changed my meds YESTERDAY -- went down to 225 mg of Effexor (since 300 mg sent me through the roof) and added 100 mg Topamax. I have no idea how those medications will change my depression.

However, as of August 11 at 1:36 PM, I am actually in remission and my original post IS actually true!

Edited by daisy
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On 11/08/2016 at 1:48 AM, jt07 said:

I kind of suspected that might be the case when I read this this morning, but I didn't want to go around diagnosing. Unfortunately, for most of us, it's never completely over. It's a process of management of symptoms. When people declare that they are cured, it's usually a sign of hypomania.

I totally agree and it works. The symptoms stay there but they are much milder if you are on meds. Early 2015 I went un-medicated and I had 4 episodes that year (including a full-blown manic one) and they lasted for 4 to 8 weeks, the last one before I went back on meds was a 4-5 month depressed episode.

I am on meds now and this year I only had a 5 week hypomania and crushed to a mild depressed episode that's sort of ongoing. My symptoms though are quite mild, I can function better with medication. Yes, I might sleep a bit more, feel rough and drink a bit more but I can eat and walk out the house which is good.

__

All I have to say though to you Daisy is stick to your meds. It's easy to come off them if you're on a high. I was really tempted to come off them when I was high in june/july plus I was at a festival so the temptation was bad. Although I'm glad I didn't because I'd be much much worse now.

Edited by The Right Honourable Jimmy
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Just thought I'd let everybody know I'm doing well. My hypomania is gone for now, and I do not feel depressed. I didn't realize remission meant six months, so I guess I can't say I'm in remission. I'm starting down that road, however!!!

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On 8/12/2016 at 3:25 AM, The Right Honourable Jimmy said:

I totally agree and it works. The symptoms stay there but they are much milder if you are on meds. Early 2015 I went un-medicated and I had 4 episodes that year (including a full-blown manic one) and they lasted for 4 to 8 weeks, the last one before I went back on meds was a 4-5 month depressed episode.

I am on meds now and this year I only had a 5 week hypomania and crushed to a mild depressed episode that's sort of ongoing. My symptoms though are quite mild, I can function better with medication. Yes, I might sleep a bit more, feel rough and drink a bit more but I can eat and walk out the house which is good.

__

All I have to say though to you Daisy is stick to your meds. It's easy to come off them if you're on a high. I was really tempted to come off them when I was high in june/july plus I was at a festival so the temptation was bad. Although I'm glad I didn't because I'd be much much worse now.

Don't worry... I'm sticking to my meds! I take them daily at the same time. (Well, I try to take them at the same time...) Unless my pdoc changes something, I'm thinking I might wait until I'm able to have a full-time job for a year until I start going off things.

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  • 2 months later...

Just to update everybody... I'm still doing very well. I had a couple of "bad days" last week. (I had to put it in quotes, because my bad days were not even CLOSE to what I had been dealing with. I'm functioning. Everything is great. After going down on Effexor and adding Topamax, I haven't had any hypomanic episodes. (In fact, I hadn't had any depressive episodes except for the three days last week!) I've been able to start and have a serious relationship -- something I would have never been able to do before.

 

So I am proof that it CAN happen when it doesn't seem possible. And right now, everything seems possible to me.

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  • 7 months later...

I thought this post deserved an update, because I have great news.

I have not been depressed nor hypomanic since I posted. I am officially in remission. I am currently still on all of my medications. My pdoc has mentioned coming off of maybe the Geodon, but because I haven't been in remission for very long, I'm hesitant to do so. I've also had a lot of changes in my life (though both VERY excellent), and there will be pressure.

The first change is that I am now planning a wedding!!! If you had told me a year ago that I would be able to handle a relationship, I wouldn't have believed you. And I don't think I could have done it at that time. But my relationship has truly helped me become happier than I have ever been.

I am also going to get my teaching certificate to teach high school English. I feel confident that I will be able to go back to work when I finish the program.

I have NEVER not felt depression until now. It has been a lifelong struggle. And I know that there will be times when that struggle will come back. I'm okay with that now. Because I know I can get out of it. And the feeling of not being depressed... I never thought I could feel this free. It was like I had been stuck at the bottom of a pit since I was five, and finally at thirty, somebody gave me a ladder so I could see the world for the first time.

My anxiety is getting better as well, but that's a relatively new development, and I still struggle with it quite a bit. On the bright side, it is improving -- ALL forms of my anxiety, in fact.

I still struggle with my eating disorder, though that is on and off (currently on, unfortunately), my ADHD, and my crazy insomnia. I'm working on my food and body issues and am trying to follow a healthy diet to lose weight for the wedding. So far, I'm doing very well, so I'm optimistic.

Even though I still have some difficulties, I've conquered SO much since August, and I am not complaining one bit because my progress has been excellent.

So have hope. If I can climb out of my pit, so can you.

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Congratulations on your upcoming wedding and on getting your teaching certificate for high school English! That is great news indeed!

So what is your secret? Is it the 2 Diet Dr. Peppers per day?

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