Dealing with my depressive fog and open mental wound
I had spent the last 5 months or so contracting in my new job and just been made permanent in the role when my uncle was taken ill from his nursing home. Unfortunately he had been bed bound with illnesses and falls throughout my pregnancy, I did get some opportunity to talk to him in a lucid state while I was pregnant with my son. However, towards the end of my last trimester his health was not getting any better despite my uncle trying to regain his independence, but he just couldn’t and never returned home. He had to be relocated to a nursing home after my son was born, I had a lot of my own health issues with my baby and myself going on too, and didn’t get to see that much of my uncle until my son was almost a year old. My mum took my son up to see my uncle when I was at work sometimes, but it was a long old trip for them both, but glad that my son may have brought some smiles to my uncle and distracted him from his pain. The first month into my new permanent role, my family had to make the decision to turn my uncle’s life support machine off and say their goodbyes. My father had already passed away as well 8 months previously.
One of the managers at the time caught me coming out of the toilets at work looking distressed, I just had enough of bad things happening in my life. I reluctantly accepted counselling, I knew I couldn’t go on as I was. I went once a week to see a counsellor, I always dreaded that I would remain silent and not have anything to say to the counsellor. However, that was far from the reality I had envisioned, the hour went quickly and I was always surprised how much I said and how on earth I got on to some subjects. I think in some ways it felt like that old saying ‘a weight had been lifted to get things off my chest’, but then sometimes I felt like I was going round in circles. I opened up about the repetitive molestation events I suffered with at the hands of a family member (somebody who fortunately passed away when I was 10 and is no longer in my life) when I was too young to know any boundaries, and ignorant to the fact that this responsible adult was taking advantage of me, that was the darkest and most difficult things for me to recall or even explain. I tried to talk about it objectively and distance myself to not get upset. To recall it is like being an observer or narrator in a film of my early life. I think the counsellor maybe saw a link with my treatment at work, all the life changes I have been through recently, new baby, new mum, family deaths, pushed out of work whether directly or indirectly and being made to sign a gagging order had reset a trauma trigger off within me. The new company I worked at had only signed me up for 6 sessions, the counsellor said I needed more and that I should see someone with more specialist training. My line manager offered that I could have more sessions, but I said I would get the specialist sessions that I needed from the NHS. I didn’t realise how bad I would feel after the counselling had ended, I just had dark thoughts, felt on edge and didn’t want to be alone near railways, especially difficult seeing as my commute to work involves that form of travel.
I couldn’t go on any longer like this and saw my own GP, who immediately prescribed me anti depressants. I was apprehensive about going on them, worried that I would become some zapped out zombie, but I just gradually became calmer and felt I was getting back to being me again. Of course, I am far from a perfect human being, and have relapses from time to time, underground lines and certain stations still make feel nervous at times and I can feel my heart racing, and I had to rely on coping mechanisms to get through it. Sometimes I probably feel stressed out by situations that others may find trivial. I should go back to talking therapy to develop better coping mechanisms, but at the moment it’s just not something I wish to do or have time for, and one day I will, especially if I feel as bad as I did when I first went to see the doctor on the day I was prescribed anti-depressants.
The doctor has talked about weaning me off my meds this summer as I have been feeling good for a while, but don’t think it will happen. Too much stress going on with my son’s behaviour, well nursery reports, starting school and now with a person I never met going too far with personal animosity. Still will try to stay strong, anti-depressants are not a sign of weakness, but taking good care of your well being like you would for any other part of your body.