The post I’d rather not write

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I’ve talked about and tried to be honest about struggling with being home with the kids and how it’s the hardest job I’ve ever done.

I’ve talked about and tried to be honest about my feelings of being an inadequate wife and mom, my lack of patience and abundance of overwhelmtion.

I’ve talked about and tried to be honest about feeling like a complete crazy woman.

And so even though all I really have is questions and doubt thus far, I sense that I need to talk about and be honest about some things I’ve been dealing with.

I’ve come to realize that all these things I’ve been dealing with and feeling, the complete overwhelmtion, aren’t those of a “normal” tired-overwhelmed mom of two toddlers. Every morning I have my devotion and right now the theme is hope. I read the scriptures and I do believe the promises that God is our hope and refuge and all we need, but still I feel so gray. So sad. So blah.

It actually all started after Caleb was born. I think I went through some major postpartum depression but me being the perfectionist and independent doofus that I am, I just made myself get through it. But I don’t know that I ever dealt with some of what I went through.

It’s continued to be an issue the last 2 years. Especially for about two weeks out of every month. I turn into crazy woman.

  • feelings of deep sadness or despair
  • feelings of tension or anxiety
  • increased sensitivity to rejection or criticism
  • panic attacks
  • mood swings, crying
  • lasting irritability or anger, increased interpersonal conflicts; typically sufferers are unaware of the impact they have on those close to them
  • apathy or disinterest in daily activities and relationships
  • difficulty concentrating
  • fatigue
  • food cravings or binge eating
  • insomnia or hypersomnia; sleeping more than usual, or (in a smaller group of sufferers) being unable to sleep
  • feeling overwhelmed or feelings of being out of control
  • increase or decrease in sex drive
  • increased need for emotional closeness
  • breast tenderness or swelling, heart palpitations, headaches, joint or muscle pain, swollen face and nose
  • an altered view of one’s body – a sensation of ‘bloating’, feeling fat or actual weight gain

Check. Check. Check. Check. Check.

It’s actually kinda scary how many of these symptoms I have.  And at times some of them pretty severe.  The above are the symptoms for PMDD – Premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

It’s gotten worse the past few months and I finally realized I needed to get help. Unfortunately because of my new job I needed to get a new doctor with my insurance. So on my first visit to my new doctor I told her about what was going on and that I thought I was pre-menopausal (I hadn’t heard of PMDD at that point). I didn’t have most of the pre-menopausal symptoms and so she chalked it up to having 2 toddlers and not getting much sleep.

But still, I felt deep down, that I’m just not myself. Especially for those 2 weeks out of the month. So one day last week when I was at a really low point, I called my doctor’s nurse and explained again what I was feeling and that I needed to get help.  That I am not coping and am a complete mess.

My doctor wasn’t able to get me in for another month. But the nurse talked to the doctor and I talked to the nurse and the nurse talked to the doctor again (and really we could have saved all this time on calls and just seen me in the office).  The nurse called back the last time and said the doctor does want me to come in but since it’s a month out she can prescribe me a low dose anti-anxiety medication.  Based on my symptoms it sounded like PMDD and the prescription is used specifically for that (Zoloft).

Panic! Anti-depressant! Ahhh! I’m a Christian. I love Jesus and have the joy of the Lord. He has rescued me from so much pain and heartache.  WHY DO I NEED AN ANTIDEPRESSANT?

Even though I agreed and got my prescription that day, I’m still confused about the whole thing.  I know God can make this all go away like that. But I also know He’s given us doctors to help us through things.  But I also know that He is my hope and healing and I wonder why I can’t just release this all to Him and He take it away?  So the jury is still out.  I just want to be happy. I don’t want to be so sad. I don’t want to get so angry at my kids or Pat. I don’t want to feel like hiding my head under the covers all day. I love the Lord. I’m so thankful for the amazing blessings he’s given me. I pray and read my Bible and still this cloud of dread hangs over me.

But it is what it is.  And I have a sense of peace that maybe I can finally get some answers.  And that I don’t have to live with this for the rest of my life.  My appointment isn’t until June 15th and so for now I’m doing alot of research and reading on both Zoloft and hormone replacements. There’s some family history that might prevent me from hormone replacements. I know there’s alot of natural remedies. I know exercise and healthy eating are supposed to help but that doesn’t seem to help me a whole lot. (Ya! I’ve been running again for the past 2 weeks.)

For now I just ask for your prayers. That I would do what is the best thing to help me feel healthy and like a normal person.  I’m a little upset/frustrated because I can’t see my “regular” doctor (because of my new insurance). He’s been my doctor for 15 years, he loves the Lord and I completely trust him. I might just end up calling him and pay the extra.

I also wanted to share because hopefully this can be an encouragement to you if you are struggling with some of the same things. Don’t be silent. Get some help. Call your doctor. Call a friend. Reach out. I’m not a proponent of antidepressants. I’m not sure what I’m a proponent of at this early stage of the game. But I do know that there is help and it’s ok to ask for it.

I’m so thankful for an amazingly patient husband and two forgiving precious kiddos. And for a heavenly Father who is faithful and holds me strong. It’s through Him alone that I find my refuge and help. I will lean on Him forever.


3 thoughts on “The post I’d rather not write

    Jenny said:
    May 18, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    My dear friend, it is so late here, I only came down the stairs because I remembered that I forgot to let the dog in. Mostly asleep in my brain.

    Thank you for being brave and sharing,baring it all, with us. Much love to you, praying you will find the answers you need!

    Laenie said:
    May 18, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    *hugs* friend.. I just want to say I’ve been there, since you’re being honest, I will to.. Come on over for a playdate and some chat some day! I’ll be praying for you!!
    Love.. me.

    singspeakgloryseek said:
    May 19, 2011 at 8:56 am

    Missy, I’m so sorry you’re suffering. There’s no easy answer to this. I just want you to know that many great men and women of God have suffered with this.
    Martin Luther himself endured many instances of depression. He described the experience in varied terms: melancholy, heaviness, depression, dejection of spirit; downcast, sad, downhearted. He suffered in this area for much of his life and often revealed these struggles in his works. Evidently he did not think it a shameful problem to be hidden. A good article:

    Charles Spurgeon suffered debilitating bouts of depression all his life.

    • “God is to me the Great Unknown. I believe in him, but I find him not.”—Adoniram Judson, America’s first foreign missionary.

    David was overwhelmed with grief and sadness, his heart was desolate, and his tears fell all night (Psa. 61:2, 77:2-3, 142:4, and 143:4). Jonah, Jeremiah (Jer. 15), Job, and Elijah (I Kings 19) are other examples. Whenever characters express rejection, loneliness, self-pity, hopelessness, overwhelming grief, and wish they had not been born, it seems they are expressing more than temporary sadness but classic symptoms of major depression. Paul had classic symptoms: his flesh had no rest, he was troubled on all sides, he was cast down, he had fears within, and he despaired of life (II Cor. 1:8 & 7:5-6). Hannah (I Samuel 1) had many of the symptoms of depression and her spiritual leader instantly and incorrectly accused her of a spiritual problem.

    • “Cursed be the day in which I was born!”—Jeremiah

    • “It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life.”—Elijah

    • “Conflicts without, fears within” … depressed.—Paul the apostle, in 2 Corinthians 7:6 (NASV)

    The non-depressed rarely understand the unrelenting pain involved, the feelings of hopelessness, and think the person should just pick themselves up and get over it. It is not that easy. In fact, when that part of the brain that mediates emotions is not functioning properly, medical help (not criticism) is often needed. from the article:

    Missy, when I was strugging so much with my depressions and anxiety, and I didn’t feel God’s presence, you were always there, telling me the thing I will tell you now: God is with you! Jesus is holding you! He will not let you walk through this valley alone!

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