Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Depression Hurts

You may have heard that saying before on TV commercials. I can tell you that it’s true. Over the last two months I have felt depression like no other time in my life. Like most everyone else, I have felt “down” before. Just been “bummed for a day or so, but it always passed rather quickly. But now I didn’t want to get out of bed in the mornings, why should I? I was getting nowhere in my job, my kids were fighting all the time, I was sure my wife was seeing other guys, I’m past 45 and I don’t get noticed by those 20 something girls anymore… the list goes on and on. So there were days that I just didn’t get up. Being a sales rep I don’t have to be at the office, heck I pretty much make my own hours! So nobody will miss me if I don’t show up! They would call and leave a message on my cell and I would call them back and make it sound like I was working all the while I was home under the covers watching westerns on TV. I just didn’t care! I ate and gained weight (bet some of you will be surprised to learn that I now weigh 212 pounds!) and lost a lot of energy and that just adds to the depression. You are what you eat, and I was a big piece of candy. But, I did not care. I just wanted to be left alone. I wanted the old days back. They were safe and like a 30 min sit-com they always had a happy ending. I didn’t play with the kids much, I didn’t go ride my horse much, I didn’t talk to my friends much. I just wanted to be left alone and feel sorry for myself. I thank God that I never got to the point that I wanted to end my life though. The funny thing was, when I did work and would go into a doc’s office, I was able to be happy and funny like nothing was wrong! My wife kept telling me that I needed to talk to my doctor about this but I didn’t want to. I didn’t want help but inside I was screaming for it. Finally two weeks ago, I had a sore throat and when I looked in the mirror and said “Ahhhhh” I saw what looked like those puss pocket things I get with strep throat, so I called the doc and made the appointment. While I was there waiting (and waiting and waiting and….well you get the idea!) I decided I would just bring up the depression in side talk. Maybe like “speaking of depression, three nuns walk into a bar…” or maybe use the old “I have this friend that’s depressed…” I had no idea why I was embarrassed but it was really hard for me to say anything. Finally the doc came in and just my luck, he was sick! It seemed like he was more concerned with how he was feeling than on what was going on with me. Now I like this guy, he’s the son of my original doc, and he’s about three years out of all his training and maybe mid 30’s I’d guess, but inside I was screaming again “It’s about me!!” He looked in my mouth and told me that it looked like calcium deposits but he had never seen any so big before. He prescribed an antibiotic and then asked to look again. He was impressed with the size. “No big deal to me, just felt like a piece of popcorn when it gets stuck in there” I told him. Then I said, “Can I ask you something?” I began to perspire. “I’ve been feeling kind of down…really kind of depressed…not I wanna kill myself kind…but really depressed…” That was it. I had said it! Now just give me a pill and I’ll be fine! “How depressed is “kind of”” he asked. So I took a breath and told him about blowing off work, not trusting anyone, feeling sorry for myself all the time. He looked in my chart for a few minutes then asked when this all started. Trying to be funny I told him “When I got your bill!” Dead silence. So I then told him about 2 months ago. Again he looked thru my chart. Then he told me he’d be right back and exited the room. Great I wondered, why didn’t I just keep my mouth shut? This is all Yvette’s fault, she made me tell him. Doc came back in the room with a book and after thumbing thru it for a sec asked if I was still taking the high blood pressure meds that he prescribed for me in Nov. I said yes. He then said “ok stop them as of today. I want to see you in 2 weeks and we’ll check your pressure and re-evaluate then.” That’s it?? All this from that one small pill? Well according to the book he checked, this med can cause depression, and guess what…it does! I have been off it for 2 weeks now and it’s amazing how much brighter the world is! I’m doing well in my job (seems that I was right along even playing hooky a few days) my kids don’t get under my skin as much and my wife still only has eyes for me (seems she always did!). But those 20 something girls still don’t check me out! Oh well, who needs THAT drama anyway?? Last night I pulled out the old treadmill and am going to start working with it tonight. I gotta get my girlish figure back in shape for the summer!! I go back to the doc tomorrow and we’ll see what my pressure is, but as for right now my outlook is sunny days ahead!
All day, baby…ALL DAY!!!


david mcmahon said...

The sheer power of this post lies in its honesty. I wish you well in your new-found purpose. Keep at it and treasure the things you have.

CrazyCath said...

I popped over via david's blog (above). This is so honest. I am glad you have found a way up and wish you well.

I too have suffered clinical depression (not caused by any med though) and although I have physical conditions that make me very sick, nothing, I mean nothing, has made me as ill as depression, or taken longer to recover from. It leaves you drained and powerless.

So power to you. And keep going. It's worth it. There is life after depression. I'm living proof!

Momma said...

I found you through David's blog.

This is a great post, and I'm so happy that you have a doctor who doesn't just write you a prescription without trying hard to get to the bottom of things. One more pill wouldn't have been the answer in this situation, and there are many HBP meds to try.

Good luck in the upswing!

Peace - D

The Egel Nest said...

Found you through David -

It is amazing that this was all caused as a "side effect"...


Glad things are better though :)

Loved the "depression and 3 nuns walk into a bar"

The Egel Nest

Jenera said...

Actually admitting something to a doctor like this is hard-I've done it before myself. Being able to do it though had a quick fix and that's great!

Here's to a good appointment and blood pressure check!

San said...

Thanks for this post, Slone. You have a perceptive doctor--how fortunate for you, but it would have been far less fortunate had you not gotten up the courage to talk to him.

David sent me over.

katydidnot said...

well said. and ugh. in so many ways.

Sandi McBride said...

Well good thing you found out what was causing all that...I was just getting ready to go into my Cher routine (you know, a slap across the face, "SNAP OUT OF IT") when you finally overcame your indecision. Good luck with everything, and do the horses a favor...don't go riding till the extra weight comes off, as I am certain that it will!

Mike said...

Hey Jeff. Glad they have a line on what was causing your depression. I wish you would have got in touch with me during these hard times. But I understand. Its hard to want to talk to anyone during those times.

My Mom had all sorts of issues with her blood pressure meds. I am glad your doctor took you serious ( even though you have a sharp sense of humor!) and didnt just throw pills at the problem.

We need to keep in touch more. I hope you know I am there for you as a friend and that I care for ya!

Anonymous said...

Isn't it strange that we as adults can go to a gp and tell them I have a sore stomach, I have an unamable pain somewhere but to admit we feel bad, that we feel down or that we just can't cope takes a Goliath effort.
Its almost as if we are afraid of getting the old "harden up and snap out of it" answer.
Good for you for speaking up and glad your feeling better.

Lori said...

I'm so glad you are resolving this. We all have days when we feel 'down' but sometimes it becomes more than that. I take blood pressure meds too, but haven't had this kind of experience. Something to watch for.

From all that I've read and heard over time, it sounds like your wife is head over heels crazy for you (why else would she want you to seek the doctor's advice so you'd be ok?) and you have a mountain of blessings. I'm glad you are feeling much better so you can once again enjoy them.