Friday, January 2, 2009

Confession

I've been thinking I should blog about why I haven't been blogging. Did you catch the problem in that statement? It's actually the answer to why I haven't written. I've been depressed. Not everyday, but I have been struggling with it throughout this pregnancy and I think since I only have 34 or so days left until this baby arrives it's time to come clean. It's hard for me to blog when I am depressed, or even if I was depressed yesterday because I don't want to think about my life. I just want to get through it the best I can and not analyze it. I don't want to make my life sound any worse or any better than it is and I have a fear that whatever I write will do that. I also think about all the different people I know who read this and worry what they will think about this or that thing that I write. I just want to hide until I feel better.
Apparrently the hormones that are rushing through my body to make this baby grow are stronger than the medication I take to keep my brain from crashing. I tried taking more of it but it just made me so sleepy I couldn't do anything. I think, in retrospect, maybe I should have just tried a different drug earlier on. But now I want to wait until the baby comes and see what happens. My family, my therapist, and now all of you, know that my depression might worsen postpartum and that I would need to get more help, but there is also the possibility that I might start to feel better. So I will wait it out one day at a time. If you see me and I am smiling, know that I am not trying to pretend to be happy, I am probably just okay at that moment. I seem to be able to do and think about some things but not others. I am looking forward to seeing this new baby, and my newest little nephew, but let's not talk about money, or the middle east, or health care, or christian persecution, or missions or child abuse okay? Those are some of my recent triggers into the depths of despair and I can't seem to distance myself from the emotional part of them right now.
As for an update on Acadia...
I had a phone meeting with one of the researchers at NIH this week to answer questions about the last 6 months. I didn't have a lot written down, but thankfully I had blogged about the manic episode Acadia had in the fall and I was able to use that to answer most of the questions. I need to remember to keep blogging updates now and then just for my own sake since I'm not keeping any other sort of journal for her right now. She had been pretty stable until we got close to Christmas and then she started having some anxiety about how long it was going to be until Christmas, and what we were doing everyday. She wanted to fill up every minute of her day with some exciting activity until Christmas morning arrived. With help from my Mom we kept her as busy as we could, but we were still hearing a lot of "I'm so bored I can't stand it". It's been difficult for me to be depressed and unmotivated and not able to think of ideas and things for her to do when it seems like she often needs or wants me to do that for her. She likes to have her environment prepared for her because it decreases her stress and anxiety level so much. For example; Mom hasn't been making sure all the socks are clean, paired, and in the drawer, so she's had to go looking for socks when she needs them and gets very frustrated. On the other hand she CAN do many things independently and often does, so it's more a matter of figuring out what the biggest stressors are and trying to help her with those. And then there's the things you can't avoid, like Christmas. Thanks to Seroquel she slept great and then we all got up and opened presents together. Once that was done we told her there would be about an hour to wait until we left to go to Grammie's. This was apparently more than she could handle because she started getting agitated and stomping around the house. Then she was saying how much she hated Christmas, throwing things, dumping crayons everywhere and getting more out of control. We directed her upstairs, and on her way she flipped the bookcase over and all the kid's books came crashing down the stairs. Once in her room, she cried and screamed about how bad she was and how sorry she was, that she wanted to kill herself and that we could never forgive her. Because I sensed a desire in the midst of this verbal debris to make things right, I simply asked her if she was ready to clean up the books. She immediately came out and began cleaning up. I helped her until it was done, and she apologized to us for what she had done. We forgave her and left it at that. We went to my Mom and Dad's and she held it together pretty well for the rest of the day, but it wasn't until we were driving home that night from our last "Christmas" that she finally seemed happy and relieved. She said that she still felt bad about throwing the fit that morning, but the rest of the day was so wonderful and she loved all her presents and was looking forward to playing with them tomorrow. It was such a dramatic turn around from her attitude the rest of the day, I was amazed. I hadn't even thought of the concept that she probably couldn't enjoy any of her gifts until it was all over!
Since then, there have been a few times when I have seen some depressive symptoms. One day she put these signs on her bedroom door:
The piece of junk
Worthless Person
You wouldn't like me
Behold: the worst person
The Unloved
(I know, they are sad and funny at the same time, especially with the bad spelling they were written in.)
Acadia is difficult to motivate, often very bored, unfocused, always wants to go somewhere and is irritable at times. At other times she is able to play happily with her sister and friends. It might be the beginning of a depressive episode or it might be a good description of most of us in Maine in our post holiday slump. We will have to wait and see.
That's the most writing I have done in ages, so let's call it good and hopefully we can do this again soon.

2 comments:

s said...

Good to get a real update from your family. I assumed since we hadn't heard, everything was going well. I guess I kind of assumed wrong. I'll be in prayer for you especially these next 31 days! I remember when I was pregnant, I had such horrible fears of people dying or me falling and injuring the baby. I think that's a normal part of pregnancy. You are right, the hormones are running wild! I pray you'll be able to enjoy these last few days of Beatrix inside of you before she makes her grand entrance; something you've been waiting for for years! Love you, Selena

Anonymous said...

My almost-10 y/o saw the p-doc today. He's been on maintenance meds for nearly 2 years. Considering family history, I'm thankful his issues were identified early. I'm thankful for meds. Thankful for counseling. Thankful that he gets a chance to develop good patterns of dealing with live, instead of getting stuck in dysfunction.

And at the same time I'm angry. I think it isn't fair. Kids shouldn't have to deal with mental illness.

What is wrong with this screwed up world when a pretty normal, pretty stable, imperfect but loving family isn't "enough" to help a kid get a good start. . . Shouldn't that prevent anxiety and depression?! My goodness! I put my 8 y/o on prozac! (And I thank God for it. . .)