A Poke in the Ribs

But it was a gentle poke, as she who did the poking, er, nudging is the non-violent sort. Or at least I think she is. You are, aren’t you? 🙂

I didn’t mean to run off and leave the ship deserted for so long. In fact, I’ve been trying to get back here for the past week, but I’m still having a bit of trouble engaging the “words” part of my brain. That’s getting better, though. Until a few days ago, a nudge would have had no effect at all. But now it seems to do the trick. Give me a bit more time and no nudging will be needed. In fact, you’ll probably give me a good sharp poke, hinting that it might be a good idea to shut up now and then! 🙂

I’ve suspected it all along, but now I know for sure that it was the anti-depressant causing my brain shut down. A couple of weeks ago I suddenly hit serious zombie territory, and that’s not somewhere I like being. No, not at all. The kicker was that I was too spaced out to care … until I went to see the optometrist early last week and had trouble following his simple commands. I’m left-handed, for pete’s sake, so why was I constantly raising my right hand when he wanted me to cover an eye with my left? I have to think to use my right hand, but the left responds automatically. Dear oh dear. Luckily Hubby was with me, as it was a first time visit to a new guy and he took us both in at the same time. So, Richard saved me from looking like a complete dolt by knowing how to break through my daze. Wow, I didn’t realize that he had been forced to master that skill, but we often don’t have insight into our own behaviour, do we? I zoned out on the short walk home, too, so enough was enough. I cut the dose that evening and it has been uphill ever since. Phew!

And no, I’m not going to go on a rant about the evils of medication in general, and anti-depressants specifically. I needed this, it has done its job, and now I don’t need it anymore. Or at least not as much of it. I don’t know if I’ll come off it entirely, or just keep gradually cutting back over the next several weeks to a very minimal dose. It has been the bandaid I needed until my Vitamin B12 level got back up off the basement floor, but probably it was needed for more than just the B12 deficiency. A lot has changed in my head over the past fourteen months, and that was long overdue.

I’m just going to ask you to bear with me over the next few weeks as I go through the step-down stages. Coming off an anti-depressant has to be a slow process and it’s not the most pleasant experience in the world. Luckily there’s no sign at all of the return of anxiety and depression since stepping down a notch, but other stuff is a bit icky. Rather like when you start on one, only a bit more intense. I feel more awake and mentally alert, but it’s going to take a bit of time to get the brain back to full throttle. Well, not full throttle as I still have the CFS brain fog to deal with. But that’s nothing compared to the drug-induced fog. Really!

Anyway, enough of all of that. Otherwise, things going very well around here. Stephanie is in the midst of a CFS flare again, but she’s happy enough in herself and that’s all that matters. The garden is thriving and we’re sampling much of its bounty now. I’m not a big fan of peas as a rule, but fresh ones from the garden are a whole different matter. Pretty much everything else, except the tomatoes and potatoes, is usable at this stage, too. Er, the large tomatoes, that is, as I spotted some ripe ones on Stephanie’s cherry tomato plants this morning. The flowers are also doing well and look rather amazing, if I do say so myself. 🙂 Let’s hear it for plentiful rain and just the right amount of heat thus far. Well, too much heat for me, but perfect for the plant kingdom. A week ago I was kind of “meh” about the garden in general, but now the excitement and appreciation are coming back. Feeling emotions is a good thing, people! I haven’t experienced the catch in my throat that comes from real excitement and joy yet, but it will come. Just breaking out into a spontaneous smile, and meaning it, is an improvement.

The really big news of late is that Richard will be starting a new job at some point in the next month or so. Well, same facility, but different unit, different shift, and part-time, rather than full-time. He has needed a change for a while, but kept putting it off, thinking that we couldn’t manage on less money, despite my assurances that we can. We’ve done it before, and sometimes there are far more important things in life than money. Neither of us cares a bit about accumulating more material wealth or doing/having expensive things. As long as we have enough for all of our needs and some of our wants, we’re happy. Most people his age would be retired already, so he’s certainly entitled to cut back to seven shifts every two weeks, rather than ten. It’s going to be a help for me, too, of course. He’d make an excellent full-time househusband, and is looking forward to having the time and energy to do more around here again. Like I’m going to say no this time! I had a problem with him helping when he worked part-time before, but I’m older and wiser now. 🙂 Okay, forget the wiser bit, I actually need the help now, and I’m not too proud to say so. Yet another change in the head, thanks to the happy pills!

Alrighty, this will have to do for now as I need to get on with a few things this afternoon. Thanks again for the nudge, you who shall remain anonymous. 🙂


3 thoughts on “A Poke in the Ribs

  1. I think I know the Poker. I think she's a mutual friend. ;-)Glad you're feeling perkier. Hope you feel like blogging more in the near future.Not that I have much room to talk at all. Besides all my health issues I have my grandbaby 12 hours a day, every day and I've been a bit lax in the blogging area as well.Love and hugs,Diane

  2. I sometimes find myself envious of you my friend…you “know” when to stop and take care of yourself…me…I keep plodding on and end up bringing out negativity when I should just shut up and stay to myself until I feel better.I hope you get better and better and once again have a catch in your throat from real excitement and joy!!(((hugs)))

  3. Well I'm glad it was a gentle poke! hehe Sounds like you were really having a rougher time than usual but luckily you've now realized it was the anti depressants causing you to be so out of it…gradually cutting back on it is the smart thing to do. The ones I take haven't once given me that “brain cloud” I'm happy to say! They just take away that awful anxious feeling:-) Great news about Richard cutting back his shifts…as you say, he deserves it!! You take care of yourself my friend and know that I think of you often:-) xoxo

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