Thursday, January 19, 2012

Rainbows, unicorns and depression

Ok I lied about the rainbows and unicorns but that was so you would be drawn in by pretty shiny things. Now you are this far you might as well keep reading.

I got formally diagnosed with depression by a GP near on a year ago. This was a huge relief for me.

Before I was diagnosed I was a drain on my friends and family. They would tell me to cheer up or get over it. But I couldn't. It was so hard to explain why I couldn't just be happy. Of course I laughed and smiled through it all but inside I felt like I could no longer go on.

I take medication for my illness. This is another one of those things I do which is frowned upon. People don't like to think of depression as an illness. But I assure you, I have seen it from the other side and it is. I can't imagine anyone saying "oh you've got a headache, you don't need any painkillers, just get over it" but they do with depression.

Before I took the step to find help i felt trapped. Like being in a hot sauna and there was no door. After a few weeks of medication I felt so much better. Like the pain had numbed. It's still with me and it still keeps me awake at night. I still have days when I hate everyone and everything but I can manage my way through them as I know there is a way out.

Now antidepressants. They are interesting. Imagine every side effect possible from a medicine. And then imagine the exact opposite of them. This would probably be the whole list. Some fun examples are:
Increased libido. Decreased libido
Needing to urinate. Being unable to urinate
Being hot. Being cold.
Feeling a state of calmness. Agitation and nervousness.
Constipation. Diarrhoea.
Sleepiness. Difficulty sleeping.

You get the point.

They also advise you not to drink. I chose on more than one occasion to ignore this advice. And I have spent he next few days regretting my decision. I have been kicked out of pubs, abandoned by friends and completely embarrassed myself.

I am now a non drinker. I am pleased to say this. I feel really good about it. You will still see me out as much as you did before, cos I love pissing about with my mates, but you will not see me drink any alcohol. And no you can't have a lift home. Get a taxi!

Saying this though I do have a lot of vodka and wine in my house that you lot are more than welcome to. But don't touch my sailor jerrys. There may be a night sometime in the future where rum is the answer.

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