quote of the moment

quote of the moment:

That feeling when you're not necessarily sad but you just feel really empty.

~ Author Unknown

Grief can't be shared. Everyone carries it alone. His own burden in his own way.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/annemorrow153204.html#EjJAO6QpHAxPa7jg.99

Grief can't be shared. Everyone carries it alone. His own burden in his own way.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/annemorrow153204.html#EjJAO6QpHAxPa7jg.99

Friday, December 12, 2014

life happened

It's been ages since I last wrote here and it wasn't intentional. I hadn't planned a hiatus - else I would have announced it - and I had most faithfully intended to update the blog every now and again.

The other day a friend - very likely my most faithful reader - asked me whether I had given any thought as to what I wanted to do with my blog. She probably didn't mean it that way (our conversation was interrupted at that point and we never came back around to the topic) but in my head this is how I heard it: "It's obvious that you're no longer writing blog posts. Isn't it time you let the blog go?"

Well, I haven't given it any thought - at least not since the last time I did consider it.

I wanted to blog, but life happened.

You could say that the very beginning of 2014 was an unfortunately prophetic sneak preview into the year ahead. On January 3rd Gramps passed away. Then later in spring my uncle died. Another few months later we had to let our beloved cat go. By then I was pretty much done with 2014.

That's when other things started happening.

For a few months it seemed as if bad news were awaiting me around every corner: emergency visits to the hospital, life-threatening illnesses, existential angsts. Most of these things affected me deeply but they were, ultimately, not my stories to tell. And I found that it was beyond me to jabber on about mundane and random stuff here, while my soul felt inundated with heartache and my mind was awash in worry.

And then there was this whole other thing going on.

See, in March, after an exceedingly mild winter (good for morale thanks to abundant sunshine, but bad for migraines due to changeable weather), I decided that something had to be done. I got referred to a neurologist and we spoke about my medical history - all of it, mind you. In the end I got a prescription for a drug. The idea was for me to take this medication every day during six months. It should reduce the number of migraines significantly. It did. It should have a lasting effect even after discontinuing it. It did.

It also made me feel dead tired all the time. At some point I actually started sleeping 14 hours every day and it still didn't seem enough. After a while I started noticing - in those rare waking moments - that my world had developed a decidedly grey tinge. I let it slide. I was tired and sleepy all the time and I was getting so little done it would have made anyone feel depressed. It took another few weeks before it hit me. I'd lost all interest in life; I wasn't feeling much of anything anymore, except for hopelessness. Irritability had become my new middle name. I had no energy to speak of, nor the motivation to get anything done. Taking a shower every day had turned into a herculean feat of willpower. And the world - that had taken on a grey tinge before - had turned black around the edges. I had been there before. I knew the signposts. Depression.

That's when I picked up the package insert.

And in this there's a lesson for all of us:
Trust your doctors (or do your utmost to find a doctor you can trust), but don't trust them completely. Doctors are human beings and they do occasionally make a mistake, overlook a little detail, or just simply lack a specific piece of knowledge. Therefore, do always read the package insert before starting on a new medication.

Because here is what the package insert said: "If you suffer or have ever suffered from depression (...) you are strongly advised not to take this medication." Word.

Regardless of my GP's prompt advice and his optimistic outlook (*) it took another three months until the depression had receded sufficiently for me to function at a normal level. Because - duh! - this medication is supposed to have a long-lasting effect.

For those of you who have ever suffered from depression it seems needless to say that creativity, motivation and inspiration weren't exactly abounding. The fact that, through it all, I still managed to finish the first draft of my novel astounds me. I am, however, not at all surprised that I couldn't stomach blogging.

So, while I do not dare predict the future and indeed life is a fickle thing, I do believe that the tide has turned. I am, once again, carefully and cautiously dipping my feet into the swirling pool of life.
It seems reasonable to assume that blog posts will follow eventually.

See you soon - hopefully.

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(*) Discontinue medication, stat. And don't worry, the depression was triggered by the medication therefore it should disappear quickly.

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