**trigger warning** because I love every single person in my life and I realize we all deal with *real* things, especially mentally, if you have any issues that talking about mental health will cause a trigger in your life, please stop reading, and know that as your eye touched the title of my post, I prayed for you…. with more of my heart than I have in my body.
Okay guys. This wasn’t the purpose of this blog. I wanted to share my adventures as a married woman. I wanted to share with those back home and around me the wonder that is my awesome life with my husband!
And every married person laughed. Because marriage is hard.
Not only so because of the growing pains that come with blending two lives together, but because of Effexor XR. Effexor XR; a terrible, horrible drug that caused me such incredible withdrawal symptoms.
What did Effexor XR treat for me? Depression.
About 4 years ago, I went through a very interesting period in my life and something triggered me. I eventually became very withdrawn and… sad. I stayed in my apartment more often than not, I skipped classes, I just didn’t do life. I wasn’t having any of life. I didn’t eat, except for black coffee and granola, I chose to cry instead of having fun with friends, I just stopped. It wasn’t until a meeting with a good missionary friend of mine, who was teaching adjunct at my college, pulled me into the office and asked what was wrong. They realized the joy was gone from my face. Once a girl who was told she “exuded joy” to a girl who was told the opposite. . . dang. After my meeting with this professor, I sought help from a staff person at the school, went home and came back with an RX of Prozac. Cool right? It worked great, until I made a new change.
Fast forward 2 years later, and I moved to Ohio. My Prozac wasn’t doing the trick so I requested a new RX from my physician. They decided Effexor XR would be the best out of all the ones I had personally researched, so I trusted my physician. I should have listened to my gut this time.
A year into my BFF Effie, I needed a refill. 7 days later and still nothing.
Effie, as I fondly found myself calling the terrifying capsule filled with bee-bees the size of mosquito bites, decided that her withdrawal from our relationship was going to be fun. And that it was going to be her way: cold turkey.
They call them “brain zaps” on forums. You feel like you are being electrocuted. Your brain “zaps”, you get tingles in your finger-tips, your mouth tingles… it’s not fun.
Dizziness is something I can control pretty well due to my “twirl your flag and your body really fast” in Marching Band past. But walking from my cubical two feet to the printer and needing to hold onto the wall? Yeah, that’s not embarrassing as I walk past my boss’s office. Even walking the extra 30 yards to the bathroom was like walking on a tight rope.
Oh and let’s talk about my favorite! Mood. Swings. My poor husband. Sunday night was hell. There is no other way to say it. I asked my husband questions and said things that I heard myself saying, but didn’t comprehend at the time. I cried, I laughed, I yelled. It was awful. But he held me. Little did we know it would get much worse.
Monday I sat at my desk as I begged the doctor’s office to please refill my RX, I sobbed. I sobbed all day. In the bathroom, in between calls, trying to hide my face from everyone in my cubical. I didn’t eat, I wasn’t nice. Wow. I hate to say it but I felt like I was looking for a “fix”.
Tuesday wasn’t as horrible as I thought. We thought today we would listen to the forums and I would take 3 capsules of Omega 3’s 3 times a day, along with plenty of B-12 Complex and Valerian Root. I didn’t need the Nyquil to sleep that night. (did I mention the night sweats and night shivers? I’m shivering as I type this! ACK!)
Little did we know, Tuesday night I would call my husband crying because my hands were cold at the gas station. It’s not funny. It’s not a joke. It’s nothing to take lightly. I sincerely was upset and genuinely sad and frustrated that my hands were cold at the gas station. So I sobbed. I got home and sat in the hallway of our home, with a blanket on me in the light of the bathroom, and sobbed. I stared at the wall. And sobbed. This is the night we begged God to take away these withdrawal symptoms. This is the night we begged for healing.
Wednesday and Thursday were bearable. Today was the first day I came home smiling. I had an appetite. I wanted to get out of bed. I couldn’t wait to get to work. Today I didn’t have as many brain “zaps” or dizziness. I still had to take it easy, but today was good. Today, I also received a glorious confirmation that I was going to be OK. I received approval from a medical professional that as this isn’t the best way to quit an Anti-Depressant, that she was proud of me for sticking it out and that it would benefit myself and my future child.
And as I sit here and think about my child’s future, as I think about how scared I am that they will inherit my depression, whether triggered or not, I can’t help but cry. I can’t help but feel bad. I can’t help it. I genuinely can’t help it. I can’t suck it up. I can’t just get over it. I am feeling these emotions at this time and I am allowed to feel them. There is not a day that has gone by that I haven’t felt guilty for popping a pill. There is not a day that has gone by that I have not felt scared of the guilt and judgement I would get from people who knew what I have suffered. There is not a day that has gone by that I have taken so much on my own self to hide what I have been dealing with.
No more. I am not scared. I am guilt-free. I am free. I can’t believe it. I feel like a fish in water, I am free. I know that the Jesus I serve, the Jesus I believe was raised from the dead in one of the most wonderful miracles will give me the healing I need. The healing He has for me. It may not be here in this life, but I will receive it.
Ben and I prayed and begged and prayed and begged and will pray and beg God to heal me and to keep me sane. We are praying that He gives me strength. That He gives my husband strength.
What a thing to go through. This is not how I would have envisioned my first 2 months of marriage to be, but God has a purpose for it. It’s tough. It’s not fun and honestly, I wouldn’t wish this on the worst person in the world, but there is purpose.
I have sat on this post for a few days and I finally asked my husband if I could post it. I know there is purpose in sharing. I know there is purpose in knowledge and *educating yourself*. I appreciate how hard physician’s work, I really do. I have seen them give their sweat and tears. But I can’t help but be disappointed in human error. Right? Human error. It’s okay. I’m not furious today. Because had it not happened now, when would it have happened? God has a purpose in it.
Please don’t feel bad for us. Celebrate a victory with me and my husband! Keep praying for us, as this is just the beginning, and we are not sure how long this journey will be but we do know that Christ is our strength! We know that God has me in the palm of His hand! We are laughing about this as it is happening though and I am making plenty of jokes, so please do not be offended for me. Just praise Him for this win with us.