Medication Diary

7th March 2012 – Day 21 – Sertraline

There have been zero side effects from the Sertraline which is great news. I also feel like it is working a lot better than the Lofepramine did so that is also great news. The pills are smaller, I only have to take one a day rather than two, and they very kindly write the days of the week on each pill blister which makes life so much easier!

I was disappointed to see that they recommend you don’t drink alcohol while taking Sertraline. Again, my doctor didn’t mention this when prescribing it to me. Rightly or wrongly I have continued to drink while on it (about 2 or 3 glasses of red wine a night… occasionally a little more, sometimes a little less). I have experienced no ill-effects. I haven’t been getting more drunk than usual, it hasn’t been making me aggressive or emotional and it hasn’t been preventing the Sertraline from doing it’s job. I got banned from a depression forum for saying as much yesterday. I will post the chain of events in a separate post later. It seems that alcohol is viewed as nothing short of the devil by many people in the MH world.

All in all I am really happy with Sertraline. I’m expecting to have my usual 4 week ‘blip’ when it finally settles into it’s pace with me, but it hasn’t upset my stomach like the Fluoxetine and it stabilizes my mood/depression better than the Lofepramine. Sleep is still a bit of an issue, but is currently manageable.

I also it appears I have gained a little of my libido back… I’ve been online ‘looking around’ recently which I haven’t done for a very, very long time. My desire for sex has increased noticeably… now I’ve just got to remember how to make myself appear approachable.

I think Sertraline is my baby.


16th February 2012 – Day 1 – Sertraline

I didn’t know whether to write a new post or pick this diary back up again – I chose the diary as I figured it might be more useful. I will probably not update this daily – only when I feel there is something significant to log.

Since the last entry on 12th July, I finished my allotted 6 therapy sessions – thankfully the last 3 were not as bad as the 3rd one, but ultimately, the sessions were of no use to me. Straight after the 6th one I had an appointment with my GP (6th September) and expressed concern that I was sleeping really badly (waking 5 or 6 times throughout the night), and that I was falling asleep at my desk at work as a result and it was being noticed. The doctor said it was almost certainly the fluoxetine, so we decided that I would try and come off it over the next couple of weeks which I did. For 2 months things were fine – my depression wasn’t too bad and I started sleeping better & stopped falling asleep at work. After a while however, I felt myself slipping back to that dark place. I tried to fight it off by keeping myself busy, forcing myself to go out for drinks with friends etc., but I knew in my heart I was losing the fight. So rather than wait until it got really bad I went back to the doctor and told him that I was not doing so well and I felt that I needed to go back on medication. I said I was concerned that it was going to start effecting my sleep again, so he decided to try me on Lofepramine which I was to take twice a day.

From the beginning of November until now, I have been taking Lofepramine – I barely suffered any side effects compared to those that I suffered when I started on the Fluoxetine. My sleep seemed to be ok – only waking a couple of times a night rather than 5  or 6 times. However I don’t think they have been as effective at stabilizing my depression – they have helped, they just haven’t worked as well as the Fluoxetine did. I have had a couple of really bad downers – one in December and one at the beginning of January while I was away on holiday in Devon (holidays really don’t seem to do it for me any more).

In the last couple of weeks my sleep has deteriorated sharply – I’m not quite sure why, but my mood has subsequently deteriorated as a result and suddenly everything is a bit of a struggle again. I also noticed that my heart was beating like a mad thing – I woke up a couple of mornings ago and was aware it was beating rather fast so checked it and it was going at 115 bpm which alarmed me a little. 5 minutes later it had gone down to 100 bpm. I didn’t feel unwell or anything, but I was somewhat concerned. When I got into work I googled the side effects of Lofepramine and sure enough one of them was a racing heart.

I decided to book a telephone appointment with my doctor to see what he thought about it. He wasn’t unduly concerned about the racing heart, but said if it was causing me distress then that was a different matter (it wasn’t). I then mentioned that I didn’t think the Lofepramine was working as well as the Fluoxetine had, and that I was sleeping really badly again, so after further conversation, he decided to try me on Sertraline and also gave me 7 x Zopiclone tablets (3.75mg) as a short term quick fix to help me get back on track with sleep. Regarding the Zopiclone, he said “don’t come back to me next week and ask for any more of these because I will say no. They are very addictive and the last thing I want is one of my patients addicted to sleeping pills.” I considered that a sufficient warning. I have no intention of taking them every day – but I will definitely be taking one tonight…. I need sleep.

Today I didn’t take my morning Lofepramine tablet, I took my Sertraline tablet. This evening I will take the Lofepramine tablet… I will do that for three days then stop the Lofepramine. I just hope the side effects of the Sertraline aren’t as bad as the Fluoxetine was….

12th July 2011 – Day 69

I’m not going to carry on with this diary any more. It has served it’s purpose and is now pointless. I discuss the reasons here: Third Therapy Session

I am drinking more and more, and I’m smoking joints every day.

9th July 2011 – Day 66

Had drunk a lot last night – we moved onto the Gin & tonics after the wine ran out (the guys across the road came over & I cooked an experimental curry – I warned them first that it was experimental but luckily it turned out to be very nice). Think I went to bed at about 3am.

Woke up first at about 8am then happily went back to sleep. Spent a very lazy morning not bothering to get out of bed. Eventually surfaced at about 12pm. Watched a couple of episodes of the original Survivors series from the 70’s then fell asleep on the sofa for another 3 hours!

Couldn’t really be bothered with anything today but felt fine about that. Had arranged to go over to the guys across the roads house this evening & had another fun, drunken night. Really glad it hasn’t become sexual between us – an unusual but fantastic friendship for me. I feel very lucky.

Probably a bit over a bottle of white wine & 3 joints (2 shared & 1 solo).

6th, 7th & 8th July 2011 – Day 63, 64 & 65

Shit – I’ve got really bad at keeping this diary up to date – I’m writing this, pissed (for the American readers I mean ‘drunk’), on Saturday 9th /Sunday 10th at 2am.

Honestly, I can’t be bothered trying to remember what I did or how I felt on Wednesday. All I know is that I’ve seen a lot of the guys between the 5th & now. My mood has been fine and I’ve drunk quite a lot of alcohol every night (averaging about 1 bottle of wine or 5 beers)

Nothing of significance to report so I’ll make this one a general post for 6th, 7th & 8th July.

The one thing to mention is that I’ve been very much looking forward to next week as I’ve taken next week off work and I can’t wait to do bugger all.

Mood has generally been ok but with a few dark ‘moments’. Nothing I haven’t been able to deal with though.

5th July 2011 – Day 62

I think I’m going to have to go back to the doctor to discuss my perpetual tiredness & exhaustion – I’m starting to get a bit paranoid that I have undiagnosed cancer or something horrible like that. I know that it is probably the Prozac making me tired, but it is relentless and it is effecting my ability to work. I fall asleep at my desk every day which is not good but I can’t help it. I’ve taken next week off work so I think I might book myself in to see the doc. Also have my third therapy session next week so I’ll bring it up with him too.

Work was ok, very quiet so I spent most of the day reading a blog by Shadow Vortex – a gay guy about my age who is a survivor of child abuse. His problems and continuing daily nightmares make my own problems pale in comparison – it was compulsive reading and my heart really goes out to him. I hope he can somehow find his way.

The guys across the road came over at about 8:30pm – their  phone got cut off earlier so they wanted to ask if they could come over to mine tomorrow while I am at work and use mine to make some phone calls. Their money problems are just getting worse, their own depression and anxiety being fueled by that. They are continuing to only just pay their rent by selling their possessions – it can’t go on like that for long before they lose their flat. I wish there was something more I could do to help but I’ve just paid out a small fortune on a new boiler and I am hardly flush with cash at the best of times. I’ll be absolutely gutted if they have to move away. They’ve become very good friends and it will be a huge loss for me if they go. They have been an enormous help and tonic for me as they are the only people I can talk openly about my depression and the fact that I’m gay. All their misery was caused by an ex-partner of one of the guys who turned out to be a heroin addict and emptied out his bank account, secretly ran up huge credit card bills in his name, then left him with £15k debt which his salary can’t sustain, he’s signed off work with depression, and his partner is out of work and can’t find a new job. It’s all a horrible, horrible mess for them. If only I could just win the lottery or something I’d help them in a heartbeat. They say money can’t buy happiness… perhaps not, but lack of it can certainly cause immense pain and misery. I am witnessing this fact first hand and feel so utterly powerless to help.

So I helped in the only way I could and plied them with wine and a couple of joints. Hardly a solution, but at least momentary relief for them. They left at about 11:30pm with a set of my keys so they can use my phone tomorrow. I went to bed feeling troubled by Shadow Vortex’s misery and the guys across the road’s dire financial situation.

Just under a bottle of wine & 2 joints.

4th July 2011 – Day 61

Tired this morning after having a rather sweaty night. I did manage eventually to haul my arse out of bed and go to work. Lovely day which always helps the mood. Work is very quiet so I’m sure I will be bored senseless by the end of the day, but the poisonous colleague is off this week so it should be generally more pleasant in the office at least.

Got friends coming round tonight and I’m supposed to be cooking something… I think I’ll be ordering a pizza…

… as predicted I was bored senseless by the end of the day and couldn’t wait to get home. Friends came round and I ordered a pizza and had an enjoyable evening all told.

3 bottles of beer & 1 joint.

3rd July 2011 – Day 60

Woke up feeling a bit tired, but otherwise ok. Then spent the next hour trying to work out if I’d taken my pill yesterday. Thankfully I was able to work out that I hadn’t but checking the days on this medication diary (which seems to be turning into a more general diary). So I took a pill at about 9:30am – then had a pill at my normal time of about 9pm as well so I was back on track.

Had a very nice day with the parents, had a barbeque & watched The Kings Speech & happy tippled away on red wine all day. Mood was fine.

Probably had just under a bottle and a half of red wine over a 12 hour period. One joint.

2nd July 2011 – Day 59

Woke up feeling slightly hungover and pottered around putting things back in their place and getting the flat back in order. Parents coming over to visit tomorrow so got to get the place looking nice. Eventually managed to to to the supermarket at about 4pm.

Had to go out to Clapham for a friends birthday drinks – didn’t want to go out, certainly didn’t want to go out in Clapham on a Saturday night, but it was ok in the end & had quite a nice evening. Got home about midnight, opened up a very unnecessary can of lager, rolled a joint and promptly fell asleep on the sofa in front of the tv before finishing either.

Woke up at about 4am, managed to brush my teeth & flopped into bed.

4 pints of guinness, about 2 sips of lager and about a third of a joint.

1st July 2011 – Day 58

I’m getting lazy – I’m writing this on Monday (day 61) so I can barely remember how I felt or what I did on Friday. Let me attempt to cast my mind back…

Work was ok – I was quite happy as I knew I was going to have to leave just after lunch to go home to inspect the finished boiler installation and hand over more than a months salary… things you don’t want to spend your money on. I actually left work at about 1:30pm and I had resigned myself to the cost of the boiler a couple of weeks ago so I was feeling quite up. Everything was fine, the boiler installer drove off and I was left staring at the devastation that was my flat… every surface covered by a millimeter thick layer of brick dust. I had a cigarette in preparation for donning the marigolds and after a brief distraction from one of the guys across the road returning my keys. I spent the afternoon hoovering & on my hands & knees trying to clean the floor and stop the cats from finding it a great game to run all over the just cleaned floor, leaving their grubby little paw prints everywhere.

That evening I went round to the guys over the road for a drink & a welcome break from cleaning.

Think I must have had about a bottle & a half of white wine and about 3 joints.

30th June 2011 – Day 57

Back at work today. Mood was good in the morning but slipped at around lunchtime, not sure why – think it was my boss. Pulled it back in the afternoon but was very bored by about 5pm and desperate to get out of the office.

Flat is still like a bombsite, but settled in to 3 episodes of Hammer House of Horror and a microwave meal as still no gas.

3 cans of lager. No joints.

29th June 2011 – Day 56

Took the day off work today because of the new boiler being fitted. Complete chaos in my flat – looks like a bombs gone off. Too much going on to think about how I was feeling but I seemed to be in a good mood despite the chaos. Had a couple of visits from the guys across the road during the day. Nothing much else to report really. They won’t finish installing the new boiler until Friday but I’m going into work both days and leaving them to it. I’ll have to leave work early on Friday… need to tell my boss. Hope she’s in a good mood.

3 cans of lager. No joints

28th June 2011 – Day 55

I’m writing this on Thursday and must confess I’m struggling to remember what happened on Tuesday… that’s a bit of a worry… ah yes of course how could I forget – I had my second therapy session! I won’t go into that here as I’ve written a post about it. I struggled a bit for the rest of the day with my mood – it obviously took a greater toll on me than I thought it would. I got through the day though, and when I got home I had to prepare my flat for tomorrow when they start installing my new boiler (at vast expense) One of the guys across the road very kindly came over to help me clear the decks in preparation. When he arrived he announced that his partner had stayed at home because they was cooking me dinner which was very kind. Had a very enjoyable evening chatting to them & a nice meal. Didn’t stay too late as had to be up early to take deliveries etc.

Just under a bottle of red wine & no joints.

27th June 2011 – Day 54

Started today in a great mood. Had a lovely walk into work and the morning was good. For some inexplicable reason my mood slumped in the afternoon – I think probably because of my boss although she didn’t do anything particularly bad. I couldn’t wait for the end of the day so I could go home. Mood stayed pretty flat for the rest of the day. Did the usual TV marathon of Stargate SG1 & Atlantis in the evening.

No alcohol & no joints.

26th June 2011 – Day 53

Great day today. Weather was hot, managed to do some chores, then had the guys from across the road come round at about 3pm to enjoy the sunshine in my back garden. A little later on one of the girls from next door joined us (the other one was working). We drank a lot of wine and had a very enjoyable day. Later on we went inside & carried on chatting and the guys finally left at about 11:30pm.

I think over the course of the day I must have drunk about 2 bottles of wine but only rolled about 2 joints.

25th June 2011 – Day 52

Spend the morning in bed… this is turning into a Saturday morning habit. Dreams had been pretty weird again last night. Cleaned the bathroom, went to Sainsbury’s at about 5pm and came back & watched tv. Spoke to sister & then m&d today – I was invited down for a bbq at my sisters tomorrow – I declined… honestly just don’t feel like it which I know isn’t a good thing. Have arranged to see my parents next weekend instead.

Spent evening watching more SG SG1 & Atlantis… I’ll be pretty glad when I’ve finished them all – though enjoyable I am wasting too many evenings watching episode after episode.

I’ve drunk quite a lot this evening – 4 bottles of lager and 3 cans lager + 3 joints.

24th June 2011 – Day 51

Very busy day at work for me – covering 3 people who are in Cannes and having to deal with a difficult director changing his plans at the last minute. All in all it was a good day though – it was nice to be tested at work for a change – it’s been so quiet and dull recently that it was nice to feel challenged. I was happy with my performance and I dealt with a stressful day very successfully.

Was also glad I didn’t have to go to Cannes myself, so by 6pm, after a busy day I treated myself to a drink at 6pm… then had another small unexpected crisis to deal with… after the day I’d just had. By the time I left the office I’d had 3 glasses of white wine and felt quite pissed. When I got home I felt pretty good – the busy, taxing day had been good for me. Got home & drunk more wine, watched tv, fell asleep on the sofa and eventually crawled into bed at about 2:30am

3 glasses white wine, 2 glasses red wine & 2 joints.

23rd June 2011 – Day 50

Slept better but still tired today. Work quite busy, mood fine. Popped round to the guys over the road to see how they were – one of them had their introductory first therapy session today. Same as me he left that intro session feeling like he didn’t like the therapist and wasn’t sure about the whole thing. I did what I could to make him feel better about it. He’s more likely to bail out than I was, so making sure he goes to his next session might be tricky.

Had a couple of glasses of white wine round at theirs, then a couple of glasses of red wine back at mine – think I had 2 joints but not sure as I’m writing this on Saturday night and memory is less reliable about such things after a couple of days.

22nd June 2011 – Day 49

Slept really badly last night – woke up about 5 or 6 times throughout the night. Needless to say I’m right back where I was before the weekend… Absolutely knackered. Work quite busy for me today as boss is away this week. Happy to have stuff to do for a change.  Mood pretty good all day, though had a weird moment of downward mood change when I went to get some lunch – not quite sure what it was but it only lasted 5 minutes so no biggy.

Went round to the girls next door for dinner tonight so of course took round a bottle of red wine. I wasn’t really in the mood for socialising at first, but soon warmed up after the first glass of wine and ended up having a very pleasant evening. Early night for me – in bed by 11:30pm.

1/2 bottle red wine. No joints.

21st June 2011 – Day 48

Waking up was difficult. My respite from tiredness was brief. 1st therapy session was this morning. It was interesting and I suppose promising. My fears that I wasn’t going to like the therapist were unfounded. He said one thing which rattled me – I’ve written a post in the main blog about that.

Work was ok. Boss is away for the rest of this week in Cannes so it will be an easy week (unless I have to join her there on Friday which is a distinct possibility). The poisonous one at work was causing trouble again today – bitching behind my and another colleagues back about being late in today… unbelievable that she can be that vindictive against her own colleagues to the boss. What she failed to realise was that we were both in late this morning because we both had ‘doctors’ appointments which the boss already knew about. My boss was being typically bitchy herself by telling me about it. I bit my tongue and ignored it.

Rest of the day was uneventful – fairly busy for me but that’s a good thing.

Once of the guys from across the road popped in this evening to ask how therapy had gone which was nice – he only stayed 5 minutes.

Been a bit naughty this evening and had 2 glasses of wine & a joint.

20th June 2011 – Day 47

Didn’t feel tired today – the laziest weekend on record obviously did me some good. Ok day at work, mood was fine. Nothing much to report.

No alcohol & no joints

19th June 2011 – Day 46

Stayed in bed until about midday – another huge lie-in. Didn’t set foot outside the flat today, watched about 6 old Hammer House of Horror – fell asleep on the sofa (like I needed more sleep!), then had something to eat followed by the last few episodes of Mad Men series 2.

Mood fine. All in all a very restful and uneventful weekend.

2 bottles of beer in the afternoon & about 3/4 bottle red wine. 3 joints.

18th June 2011 – Day 45

I didn’t get out of bed until 1:30pm today – how about that for a lie in? Went to the supermarket and did my weekly shop & then did a few chores. Then watched tv and had a couple of beers. Later on I went over to the guys flat across the road & drank rather a lot whilst having a bit of an 80’s evening. It was a good evening. Nearly forgot to take my pill.

3 bottles of beer in the afternoon & then 2 more beers in the evening followed by a bottle of wine. Not sure how many joints but probably about 4 or 5.

17th June 2011 – Day 44

I’m knackered. Daily occurence now. Not sure if it’s the changing weather or the pills or what, but I just want to go back to bed all the time. Today was ok at work, mood still quite up which is great. Went out to lunch with my boss today & had 2 glasses of Champagne. Very quiet at work so rather boring. Went straight home after work and tucked into a bottle of red wine & tv. My boss mentioned today that she was giving me a bit of a pay rise, but not on my basic which is where I really need it – shouldn’t complain though – don’t actually know how much the pay rise is yet.

Planning to stay in bed until lunchtime tomorrow to try and shake this tiredness.

2 glasses Champagne, 3/4 bottle red wine and 2 joints.

16th June 2011 – Day 43

I have been feeling tired pretty much all the time since I’ve been on the medication, I’ve also been having vivid and strange dreams which I have been greatly enjoying. I have been becoming suspicious that my nights sleep are not as restful as I think they are. Last night before I went to bed I decided I was going to try and ensure a good nights deep sleep with the help of 10 mg valium. I know that possibly wasn’t very sensible but I thought it was worth a go. Well I had a really bad nights sleep – woke up 3 times and felt like I had been drugged – walking to the toilet in the middle of the night I felt like I had drunk 2 bottles of wine and about 10 joints the previous night. When I got back to bed (about 4am) I couldn’t get back to sleep. When I woke up this morning it felt like I had a hangover. I even wondered if I had been on a sleepwalk to the drinks cabinet last night! I’m so tired today my long distance vision is blurred (which only ever happens when I’m really, really tired). Lesson learned, bad idea, no more valium for me.

Mood is up today – had a great dream last night/this morning which was happy and fun and bizarre but enjoyable… I just wish I could feel like that in my waking hours… perhaps its a sign that things are improving? I like that idea so that’s what it is. It’s only 11am so let’s see what the rest of the day brings…

… the rest of the day was fine. Got home, watched a couple more Stargate episodes then a terrible film “Grown Ups”, then evicted the cats from my bedroom in another attempt to have a decent nights sleep & went to bed. Knackered.

No alcohol & no joints.

15th June 2011 – Day 42

A pensive day but not a bad day. Work was ok but quiet and boring. I wrote another entry in my blog which was interesting (for me at least). Office politics were a little strained and the girl I share an office with had a bad day.

I wanted to come home and drink some wine – they all had wine & beer in the office at 6pm – that particular habit has actually been quite easy to forego, but it didn’t stop me wanting it when I got home. Another evening in front of the tv – a couple of episodes of Mad Men this time.

Been thinking quite a bit about mortality today – a common theme with my random thoughts. Life is short. Too short.

No alcohol & no joints.

14th June 2011 – Day 41

Another quite good day. I seem to be able to control my negative thoughts much more effectively and stop them from running me down that rocky slope. I do feel more positive at the moment which is great… I think there is still a long way to go, but the fact that I’ve been able to update my cv and start applying for jobs without thinking “I couldn’t possibly do that job”, which is where I have been for the last 4 years… so I suppose in many respects things really are feeling better. The one thing I’ve noticed writing this blog, is that when do I slip into a really dark place, my mind is always really overactive and I’m constantly berating myself and putting myself down, regretting everything I do & have done and that I am, constantly looking back at the bad things, ignoring the good things and unable to think positively about the future… I wonder if that’s something I can try and control a bit better when it’s happening? Easy to say now but possibly impossible to put into practice.

Sat outside after work with my boss and colleagues while they drank beers and wine and I refrained without difficulty. Still going home, eating and watching tv… perhaps that’s the next habit I need to break.

No alcohol & no joints.

13th June 2011 – Day 40

Pretty good day today at work. Despite being really reeeeally bored of my job now, I have at least started looking and applying for a new one which is a massive forward step. I managed to do a bit more today so that’s good. Can’t work out if a metallic taste in my mouth is due to the pills or the edamame beans I seem to have been eating every lunch time for the last 3 weeks…

I am feeling hopeful that my bad day a few days ago was just a blip and that actually the prozac might be doing some good after all.

No alcohol & no joints.

12th June 2011 – Day 39

Mood ok today too despite the horrible weather. Got a call this morning from my upstairs neighbour who thought she could see a dead cat in the garden next door. Thankfully when she phoned both of mine were safely indoors. There was a dead black cat… looked horribly like one of mine. It had obviously been caught by the evil dogs who live there (a chinese mastiff / pitbull cross & some sort of pitbull type dog). Of course that just made me incredibly paranoid about my two babies – I barely let them out all day. Unfortunately there is nothing I can do about the dogs next door so all I can do is hope that my 2 steer well clear…

Wasn’t going to drink today, then at 9pm decided to have a bottle of beer. 5 bottles and 2 joints later I went to bed. Oops.

11th June 2011 – Day 38

Mood stable today – didn’t do much apart from go to the supermarket. Started drinking early today (about 3pm) – had about 3 cans of lager and a couple of joints by 7pm. Then went over to the guys across the road where I drank about 2/3 bottle white wine & another can of lager… as well as another couple of joints.

10th June 2011 – Day 37

Took the day off today to have my new boiler installed at vast expense. The boiler turned up on time, the gas fitters turned up on time but then they realised that it wouldn’t fit where the old one is… cut a long story short I didn’t have a new boiler fitted and I ended up going into work for the afternoon. Good old British Gas. Once upon a time I would have been furious at their incompetence (the sales woman not the fitters), but I remained unusually calm and just accepted the situation.

Work was ok, boss wasn’t in today either. Nothing much to report – I didn’t feel like going out for a drink with one of my colleagues after work so I just went home and settled into the usual routine of watching Stargate SG1 / Stargate Atlantis & drinking.

3 cans of lager and 2 joints.

9th June 2011 – Day 36

Today was ok. Not quite as good as yesterday but still pretty good. Things are brewing at work but it doesn’t seem to be bothering me so much. Dreams continue to be weird – I think it’s got to be because I’ve switched to taking my pills in the evening. This week definitely much better than last – perhaps the pills do work after all….

Not much else to report. 4 can of lager and 2 joints… not doing very well at refraining from alcohol and joints during the week am I….!

8th June 2011 – Day 35

I would actually go as far as to say I’m in a good mood today – I feel much better and brighter. Waking up was a problem and I had very, very bizarre and vivid dreams last night – I became aware in my dream that I was dreaming and was therefore able to control what happened, so I took myself off to a Thai beach… all great fun but getting out of bed was very difficult.

I’ve been in a positive, upbeat mood all day and I even polished up my CV and applied for 4 jobs today. I’m not really expecting to hear back from any of them, but the fact that I have taken a positive forward steps to look for a new job is great news. Incredible to think that only 5 or 6 days ago I was scraping my chin along rock bottom feeling desperate and trapped. I have no idea why my mood has swung so dramatically, but right now I don’t care – I’ve just got home and cracked open a can of lager to celebrate a good day. Let’s hope tomorrow is equally as good.

7th June 2011 – Day 34

Dreams have been getting increasingly bizarre and vivid involving all sorts of very random people from my past – it’s been quite interesting. I don’t think I slept very well last night thought – think I must have spent most of it dreaming as I was totally exhausted when I woke up and barely managed to crawl out of bed.

Unfortunately work isn’t great at the moment and I can sense the boss slipping into bully mode… there have already been a couple of snipey comments today… I know that her behaviour can send me instantly into a really black place so I am feeling a little… anxious. If she turns now it could all go horribly wrong. It’s only 11:25am now so we’ll see how the day progresses…

Luckily things didn’t deteriorate with the boss and today was actually ok. My mood is lifting and I have a little more energy. The guys across the road came over to help me hang my new painting I just bought off them – it looks good. They stayed for a couple of hours and had a drink. They both said they felt brighter today as well.

1/3 bottle of red wine and 2 cans lager + 1 joint

6th June 2011 – Day 33

Feeling much better today. I don’t know if something as simple as switching taking my pills from morning to evening has helped, or whether it’s just because I’ve had a few days of being sociable with my neighbours… it’s a chicken & egg thing… am I feeling better because I’ve been sociable? Or have I been more sociable because I’m feeling a bit better? Who knows.

Bored at work but actually snuck onto a job website to have a little look at what was around – a step in the right direction at least.

No alcohol or joints.

5th June 2011 – Day 32

Woke up late – still having strange dreams but I don’t mind that. Couldn’t really be bothered to do anything, but managed to muster the energy to go to the supermarket. The girls next door dropped round my champagne glasses which had ended up round at there’s on Friday night. Then one of the guys from across the road popped over with the painting & I handed over £350. He popped back round a bit later because his partner was bedridden with depression and he needed a bit of moral support… he said his partner is talking about suicide and has stopped taking his antidepressants – he should also be on statins but won’t take those either – all rather worrying. We chatted for a few hours & worked our way through a couple of bottles of white wine & 3 joints.

4th June 2011 – Day 31

Today was a bit of a right-off. Spent most of the day on the sofa watching tv and falling asleep… slept on and off throughout the day. That will be the late night and hangover.

By the evening the hangover was completely gone I felt well rested and in quite a good mood so I decided to celebrate with 4 cans of lager and 3 joints.

3rd June 2011 – Day 30

I didn’t go and try to pick up my prescription this morning – I was still pretty pissed off my doctor hadn’t called me. So when I got into work I called the surgery and asked why, they said that he had tried to call at 7:39pm last night. That was not true as I was constantly looking at my phone between 7pm & 8pm. I didn’t make a big deal out of it and requested that he call me today. I asked if my prescription was ready and she had a look and said yes – I asked if I could send my neighbours down to pick it up as I was at work and she said yes, so I texted the guys across the road and asked them to pick up my slip for me and they said yes (how handy is that!?).

Not great at work today – mood still unsteady and low. We all had a long lunch at work today and drank beer and wine & pimms until about 4pm – we’re very quiet at the moment so rather than get gloomy about it the boss decided we should just kick back and enjoy ourselves a bit…  you see she can be really lovely sometimes, but it’s never without some sort of undercurrent – she asked me if I was alright today which troubles me as that, from her, is a loaded question. I of course assured her I was fine. I think the office bitch has been poisening her ear again – they’ve been doing lunch together a lot recently and bad behaviour and bullying from my boss is the usual outcome of that.

Of course my doctor called while I was on the train home this evening – while going through a tunnel so he went straight to my voicemail. From his message he seems to think that I’ve just been calling him about getting a new prescription, so I’m going to have to arrange yet another call and make it clear that I need a phone CONSULTATION. Jesus how bloody difficult is it to understand?? I will keep taking the medication in the mean time, but guess what – my neighbours turned up to pick up my prescription and it wasn’t ready and I only have one tablet left. That means I have to take 2 days off the meds and I have no idea what the implications of that are.

The guys came round to mine before we went round to our new neighbour – they told me what had happened with the prescription and luckily one of them is also on Prozac and so lent me a couple of tablets to see me through the weekend. Very kind. A good job really as the doctors have failed me this time.

We had a great evening, definitely good for me and I think good for the guys across the road too who I had to twist their arms a bit to agree to join in initially. We ended up going round to all 4 of our flats like a flat-crawl, drinking all the way. Everyone got on really well which I was relieved about as the gay guys across the road had never spent an actual evening with the gay girls next door before – I was the common denominator there so a little concerned about whether they would like each other. I have no idea how much I drank but we started at 8pm and I crawled into bed at 4am. I’m guessing I had about 2 bottles of red wine… and a glass of champagne. No joints.

2nd June 2011 – Day 29

I didn’t take my pill this morning. I wanted to speak to the doctor first. I had requested my repeat prescription last Thursday, so before I went to work I went down to the doctors to pick up my slip – it wasn’t ready. I asked them if they could give me an indication what time the Doctor would call me today – they couldn’t.

I struggled at work to keep the ‘I’m fine’ face on. I did manage it but I was still in pretty bad shape. Not as bad as yesterday I suppose, but still very black. The doctor didn’t call – despite feeling panicky all the way home on the bus and train that he was going to call and I wasn’t going to be able to speak to him because I was in a public place.

I got home, decided to take my pill & switch to taking the medication in the evening rather than the morning from here on, until I could speak to my doctor.

My next door neighbours texted me to invite me and my other neighbours across the road for drinks tomorrow evening with a new neighbour who moved in above my next door neighbours a week or two ago. I invited the guys across the road by text and they phoned asking me to go round to theirs for a drink tonight. I went round, drank 1 bottle+ of white wine and shared about 4 joints with them. We talked out our depressions and made each other laugh – they’ve got big financial woes and said that they might lose their flat because they can’t afford to pay the rent… oh blimey that would be bad. I’ll help them if I can, but I’ve got to fork out £3k on a new boiler myself which I can’t afford so the help I’ll be able to offer will be small.

I digress – bad day, better evening but drank over a bottle of wine and shared about 4 joints… on a school night.

1st June 2011 – Day 28

Bad day. Terrible day. My mood slipped to a very bad place – I only just managed to stay functioning at work. On top of the black mood, I felt very anxious and panicky. All I wanted to do was run and hide. The effort of keeping a lid on it was almost too much to bear. I made an entry on the main blog about it in an effort to focus my mind.

The drugs clearly aren’t working. It’s been a month, I believe I can feel the effects of them, but they are not doing anything helpful. They make me zone out a lot – which is fine, but this is a trick I use anyway to calm my mind – I don’t need drugs to help me do that. It feels like the Fluoxetine is fuzzing round the edges but not getting anywhere near to the root of the problem. It’s like I’ve got a really itchy back, but the drugs are scratching my nose. I have arranged for a phone consultation tomorrow with my GP. I feel so bloody helpless and weak. I hate this.

Felt slightly better when I got home, shut my front door on the world & switched off in front of the TV.

Today was a horrible day.

No alcohol or joints.

31st May 2011 – Day 27

Tired. Slightly hung-over unsurprisingly. Mood ok. Deathly boring day at work – feeling really frustrated with myself that I can’t seem to figure out the ‘get a new job’ thing. Doesn’t really help that I don’t trust myself enough to be strong enough to make a new job work. Mind over matter I suppose but that’s easy to say… entirely different thing to put into practice.

No alcohol. No joints. How dull.

30th May 2011 – Day 26

Woke at 5am, then 7am, then 8am, then 9am at which point I got out of bed, fed the cats, made a cup of tea, went to the loo, and went back to bed. Woke again at 10am then slept through to midday. Have done nothing today. Not hungover (because I always remember to drink water when I’m drinking wine). Didn’t start drinking at 1pm again despite considering it – just poured my first glass at 6:15pm. Wasn’t going to smoke any joints today either but seeing as it’s bank holiday monday what the hell.

Picked up the guitar today but the spark wasn’t there. Been feeling ok mood-wise, but still that persistent flatness like someone has stolen part of my mind.

1 bottle red wine, 2 single whiskys, 5 joints.

29th May 2011 – Day 25

Started drinking at 1pm today… and smoking. I decided I’d let my hair down a bit and just drink & smoke whatever and however much I wanted. Back to the old self-medication. Unfortunately it works – because I drank over a period of 12 hours I didn’t get fall-down drunk – just happily pie-eyed. Although it makes me feel good in the short term, I’m all too aware that it is only successful at masking the depression. I watched nearly the entire series of Stargate SG1 series 7 today. I did nothing but drink, smoke, eat and watch Stargate. Didn’t leave the flat and didn’t speak to anyone. Happy days.

1 & 2/3 bottles of red wine & about 6-7 joints.

28th May 2011 – Day 24

Only remembered to take my pill at about 5pm. Panicky feelings have subsided. Feelings of being trapped have not. It feels like I’m in a sealed room and running out of oxygen – desperately trying to open the window.

I don’t know if this blog is helping me or making things worse – it makes me focus on all the negative things which pulls me down. Only trouble is that I’ve been ‘ignoring’ the negative things all my life and that hasn’t exactly helped either.

3 cans of lager, 1/3 bottle red wine & 4 joints…. first time I’ve felt quite happy for weeks after that lot.

27th May 2011 – Day 23

Didn’t sleep well last night so feeling even more tired than usual today. Getting mild panicky feelings I think brought on by my increasing suspicion that the Prozac is not really doing it for me – not having the desired effect, not making enough of a difference, not helping me. I am feeling very trapped by my depression and today I am finding it impossible to stay optimistic about the medication. All it seems to do is make me feel nauseous and make me stare into space. I wouldn’t mind the staring into space if I felt it was also lifting the depression, but it’s not.

My mood dark today – I’m still able to function, but I’m starting to feel desperate and claustrophobic. I just can’t see an end to this. I’m trapped. I’m also worried about where these thoughts and feelings might be leading…

3 cans of lager & 3 joints

26th May 2011 – Day 22

No nausea at all today. Still feeling very tired. I’m also a bit concerned that I seem to ‘drift off’ rather a lot – I feel myself zoning out / blank staring out of the window with increasing frequency. If this is all the Prozac does, I don’t know if it’s going to work for me. The difference to how I feel when not on medication is so slight, I’m wondering if its worth it. Each day is a battle to keep the black thoughts at bay – I am succeeding, but I have started to get little stabs of almost panic that I’m trapped permanently in this flatness – am I never going to enjoy anything again? ok I know I’ve got to stop thinking like that but I can’t help it – I try and push it out of my mind but it keeps creeping back up on me and it’s starting to freak me out a bit – it feels something akin to claustrophobia. It was getting so bad yesterday afternoon that I decided to break my weekday abstinence from alcohol and weed and self medicate last night. It helped.

So I feel like I’ve started slipping backwards a bit at the moment which I’m really disappointed about. I’m not entirely sure what effect the Prozac is having on me – I seem unable to identify ‘an effect’.

Mood was ok but felt rather unstable today.

2 cans of lager and a joint.

25th May 2011 – Day 21

At home today – only meant to take morning off for boiler man and swapped over to Virgin too. Virgin were late so ended up not making it into work – boss won’t be too happy with me but she gets her pound of flesh out of me so I’m not too bothered.

Got a headache late in the afternoon and mild nausea. Mood ok-ish.

No alcohol or joints.

24th May 2011 – Day 20

Nothing much to report today. Had a pretty chaotic day at work. Mild nausea in the afteroon. A touch of diarrhea for the last couple of days – forgot to mention it yesterday.

Mood ok.

No alcohol or joints

23rd May 2011 – Day 19

I’m finding it really hard to wake up in the mornings. Every day feels like I’m waking from a coma and I just want to lie there. I spend about 45 minutes snoozing the alarm and instantly falling back to sleep. I haven’t woken feeling rested for ages now. Is that another side effect of Flouxetine I wonder?

I’m definitely able to function as a human being and able to interact with people and colleagues on a daily basis at the moment which is good, but I am still getting no pleasure from anything. I’m constantly having to fight lethargy and apathy. Work bores me, I don’t really want to socialise with anyone, I can’t even be bothered going to the theatre which is supposed to be my once a month treat. The idea of going on holiday doesn’t interest me – I know I’ll be bored so there’s no point, I might as well save my money.

Basically the mood isn’t black, but nothings changed. Nothing.

No alcohol or joints today.

22nd May 2011 – Day 18

Felt very flat again today – still no motivation or energy. Really tired all the time it seems. The mood is level, but nothing interests me. I seem to spend all my time watching tv. When I do try to muster the energy to do something else, I fail.

Was supposed to meet friends at 5pm but cancelled saying I wasn’t feeling very well.

I’m a bit disappointed things haven’t improved as much as I hoped – perhaps I’m expecting too much from the Flouxetine, but I was hoping for increased motivation at least.

Drank about 1/2 a bottle of red wine, a double whisky and smoked 2 joints

21st May 2011 – Day 17

No side effects – I’m thinking I’ve got over all that now which is good.

Bored today and not wanting to do anything. Trip to Waitrose for weekly shop was all I could muster. Energy levels generally low – had a 2 hour afternoon nap. Next door neighbours came round for a drink in the evening.

Approx a bottle of red wine and 3 joints.

20th May 2011 – Day 16

No side effect today. Mood ok but not feeling sociable at all – just wanted to go home after work rather than go for a quick drink with colleagues.

3 cans of lager and 2 joints.

19th May 2011 – Day 15

Had doctors appointment this morning – have posted about that in my main blog so won’t go into it here as well. An up and down day – an exhausting day.

Not been aware of any side effects, though I’ve had a lot going on to take my mind off it.

No alcohol or joints today.

18th May 2011 – Day 14

Had an ok day today. Thankfully the RLS didn’t keep me awake last night. I think I will keep clear of the caffeine for a while – I think it somehow didn’t mix very well with the Prozac. Mood was stable today though still that eternal flatness – disinterest in pretty much everything. I had a metallic taste in my mouth all afternoon and some nausea, but I’m getting quite used to that now. It seems to get worse later in the afternoon (I take my tablet at about 8:30am).

Can’t say I’m looking forward to the Doctors appointment tomorrow – I don’t really know what I’m going to say – I don’t really have anything to say. Now that I’m not in a really dark place, my thoughts are just a ill-defined confusion about everything. I suppose I should just talk about the fact that I still have no motivation or self-esteem, or indeed interest in anything. I might bring up the subject of therapy if he doesn’t.

It is now 2 weeks on the medication and I’m not really feeling any different – I’ve thought I was on occasion, but ultimately nothing has changed. I’m going to keep off the cannabis for a while and drink as little alcohol as possible until I have been able to gauge what these pills are actually doing… or not doing.

No alcohol or joints today.

17th May 2011 – Day 13

Didn’t get a great nights sleep – woke at 4:30am & didn’t really manage to get properly back to sleep… until of course the alarm went off then I couldn’t move & major effort was needed to haul my head off the pillow. Dreams are still vivid and strange but I’m quite enjoying that to be honest.

Mood was pretty good today – still perhaps just a slightly elevated version of ‘flat’ though – I’m not sure if I actually know what ‘normal’ feels like any more. I don’t know if it’s anything to do with the Prozac – it has been nearly 2 weeks now –  but I had a cup of coffee at about 11am this morning and that unpleasant jittery feeling that you usually get from drinking too much coffee plagued me until about 8pm this evening which I found slightly odd. I don’t drink a lot of coffee (maybe one or 2 cups a week if that), and because of the infrequency of my consumption, I know that sometimes the caffeine can effect me more than I would like. However if it does make me jittery, that feeling usually only lasts for one or two hours… not the whole of the rest of the day!

As well as feeling jittery (which I absolutely hate by the way), I also started experiencing what I believe to be ‘restless leg syndrome’. Not sure if my understanding of RLS is correct, but the best way I can describe it is the almost unbearable feeling that you need to stretch the whole time – particularly the legs. Stretching does momentarily relieve it, but the feeling returns almost instantly. Although I’m not feeling jittery any more I am still feeling the RLS (please someone correct me if I am wrongly diagnosing this feeling – I am not an expert on RLS). If  the feeling doesn’t go away very soon, I can look forward to a sleepless night.

No alcohol or joints today.

16th May 2011 – Day 12

Felt ok today – still pretty flat but ok. Work was bearable despite there being a lot of unpleasant office politics going on. The boss was rude to one of our freelancers last week while I was off and really upset her – I of course always get stuck in the middle of it all. I wasn’t in the mood for it and managed to keep my involvement to a minimum.

Mild nausea in the afternoon but otherwise no noticeable side-effects. I was planning on having another alcohol and cannabis free day today, but an office colleague wanted to go for a couple of pints after work so I ended up having 2 pints of Guinness. Didn’t drink anything when I got home and didn’t have a joint. I think I have to bite the bullet and steer clear of the weed for a while – I’m concerned I won’t be able to identify what is the effects of the Prozac and what is the cannabis. I also realise that the same applies to alcohol but I’m not prepared to give that up – I will cut down on my consumption though and try and have a few more days of zero consumption along the way.

Still feeling unmotivated, self-esteem is still low, still feel trapped in my job and unable to find the drive and confidence to look for a new job. Libido still at an all-time low. At least the black mood has gone.

15th May 2011 – Day 11

My hang-over this morning was terrible – I must have drunk nearly 2 bottles of red wine and I think we had about 4 joints. Finally got to bed about 2:30am but forgot to drink water – deadly mistake & really suffering for it.

I think there is no point describing how I felt today as it will have had very little to do with the medication. Went to my parents for lunch & my sister & her family were there which I wasn’t expecting. Mood was ok, but it slumped a bit as I drove home – picked up again when I actually arrived home.

Didn’t drink any alcohol or smoke any joints today.

14th May 2011 – Day 10

Nearly forgot to take the pill today – remembered at 12pm. nothing much to report felt slight nausea/discomfort and was very tired this morning having gone to bed at about 2:30am. Couldn’t get out of bed until about 10am. Feeling flat – dreading return to work on Monday.

Eurovision tonight and had my gay neighbours over to watch. Had about 2 bottle of wine and several joints. Hey… it’s Saturday night. Need to talk about these neighbours in a post coz they’re great & a real lucky bonus to my otherwise dreary life.

13th May 2011 – Day 9

I didn’t have the extra glass of wine last night in the end – I had a cup of decaf coffee instead. I did take the day off work though. Today was better than yesterday – I actually did something I’ve been putting off for the last year – all my filing of bills & statements etc – it took hours but felt good to have done it. My mood was better today, but this afternoon the stomach ache/nausea was back – bearable but uncomfortable.

I didn’t leave my flat today apart from to feed the neighbours cats. I drank 2 glasses of red wine and 3 cans of lager and had 2 joints between the hours of 7:30pm & 2am.

12th May 2011 – Day 8

Today has been an odd day. I woke up and decided that I’d take the day off work – I was actually feeling perfectly well enough to go to work, but just decided to pull a very rare sicky. I always want to pull sickies but my guilty conscience nearly always gets the better of me. I am definitely more tired than usual – fell asleep twice today for over an hour each time.

My mood has been the lower end of flat today. Not dark, but not good at all. Didn’t feel like doing anything other than watching tv & a bit of internet. Pretty horrible dry mouth/metallic taste in my mouth today, and felt a little nauseous again later in the afternoon. I wish these bloody pills would hurry up and kick in – they’re certainly not exactly lifting my apathy or helping my motivation or mood at the moment.

I’m considering taking tomorrow off work as well – a struggle of conscience is underway… I keep changing my mind. I suppose I’ll just see how I feel in the morning, but I have got the stage of thinking ‘why the hell should I give a shit?’… which is I suppose indicating that I will take the day off… only trouble is I am concerned that days at home by myself are not doing my moods any good these days. Really confusing as surely I’d prefer to be at home than work???I should feel happier at home right?

Anyway, had a joint (sorry susietrue but I skipped the joint yesterday) and slightly more than half a bottle of wine… I suspect I might have another glass of wine before I go to bed.

11th May 2011 – Day 7

I still can’t work out what’s happening with my sleep. I feel more tired than usual during the day – I went to bed at about 11:30pm last night which is quite early for me. Waking up this morning was like waking from a coma (not that I know what waking from a coma actually feels like). My natural assumption is that this means I must be sleeping more deeply than I have done for a long time. However if I am sleeping better, why am I so tired during the day? The dreams are still vivid & odd!

Got into work late and have had a bout of diarrhea which is always pleasant. No idea if that is because of the Prozac or not. Took a couple of tablets for the diarrhea which stopped it, but unfortunately I then suffered from stomach ache and a fairly strong feeling of nausea for the rest of the day. I had to leave work early because I wasn’t feeling too good.

Mood has been ok despite feeling ill. Still managed to go round to my next door neighbours for dinner as planned & felt ok but have an unpleasant metallic taste in my mouth which just over half a bottle of red wine didn’t get rid of.

Thinking about taking the day off work tomorrow.

10th May 2011 – Day 6

All side effects seem to have ceased. My mood remains stable and manageable which is great. I feel almost ‘normal’ although I have come to realise over the last couple of months that what I consider feeling ‘normal’  these days, is to be chugging along somewhere just above rock bottom in a hazy feeling of ‘flatness’…. still that’s preferable to where I was a couple of weeks ago.

Work ok. Drank 3 glasses of red wine & had a joint at home… I know I shouldn’t…

9th May 2011 – Day 5

Barely any nausea today but feeling very tired… although this could also be explained by the bottle and a half of wine I drunk yesterday.  I think I might be sleeping a little better generally but not absolutely sure – something seems different about my sleep though.

The black mood has passed completely – now I’m what I would describe as fairly neutral. Work was tolerable and didn’t seem to drag too much. I drank 3 cans of lager and had 2 joints when I got home & spent the evening watching tv. Nothing else of interest to report.

8th May 2011 – Day 4

The nausea seems to already be passing – barely felt it at all today. Waking was strangely startling this morning – dreams seem more vivid since I’ve started taking the Prozac.

I still feel quite flat, but at least the blackness seems to have passed. Whether this is due to starting the medication or whether it is just the natural path of my depression I don’t know… and don’t care just as long as it keeps me out of that hole.

Worried that everyone seems to say avoid alcohol – I’m not a heavy drinker but I drink every day and the thought of not coming home to a glass of red or a can of lager horrify me. I’ve been a bit stupid today and have drunk about a bottle & a half of wine as I was with friends round at their house across the road.

Could do without going to work tomorrow, but feel I must try and battle on.

7th May 2011 – Day 3

Felt quite nauseous yesterday evening. Very sadly I think that alcohol makes the feeling of nausea worse… but I will continue to regularly test that theory. Slept fine, woke at 7am, stayed in bed & fell back asleep & eventually got out of bed at 10am and took my 3rd tablet. Felt slightly nauseous for an hour or two. Also had an episode of diarrhea – nothing too bad & I suppose nothing that I didn’t already regularly suffer from before the meds. Elbow seems fine today. Headache still gone.

Was hoping that perhaps my creative juices might flow a bit, but half-hearted plays on the piano & guitar didn’t result in ‘the spark’. I’ve felt pretty flat all day – not as black as the previous days, but just that feeling of ennui & restlessness. A feeling like I’m procrastinating but can’t even figure out what I’m procrastonating from…

I suppose I’ve had a lack of energy today – I couldn’t even be bothered to go to the supermarket for food… the only thing I had on my to do list. By 4pm I decided to just sit down & watch TV & have a joint which helps to stop my mind working over-time – self-medicating I suppose.

How have I gone all these years without never once getting bored by myself at home, but now it crushes down on me.

6th May 2011 – Day 2

I felt slightly nauseous yesterday evening, but nothing too bad – pretty sure it’s because of the Prozac. I didn’t really feel like having a drink when I got home, but eventually had a couple of glasses of red wine – no adverse effect from that. Headache was still there.

This morning I woke feeling brighter and the black mood appears to have lifted somewhat. Surely this can’t be the Prozac working already? I was told by the doctor that it would be at least 2 weeks before I noticed any effect and everything I’ve read about it says the same thing – some people say it takes more like 6 weeks, so I think it very unlikely that one tablet can be responsible for lifting me out of the terrible black mood I’ve been in for the last few days – perhaps it is some kind of placebo effect? The other coincidence is that my headache has disappeared today… perhaps this is somehow connected?

Took my second tablet at 9:45am and about 15 minutes later I started feeling a little nauseous again and I also felt a little high for about half an hour. It’s 10:40am now and the nausea and feeling high has subsided.

My elbow really hurts – think I’ve bruised it… that’s got absolutely nothing to do with the meds though, so not sure why I even mentioned it.

5th May 2011 – Day 1

Had my 2nd doctors appointment today and he has put me on 20mg Flouxetine a day.

I have just taken my first pill.

I started today feeling ok at home, then by my 9am appointment with the doctor I could feel myself withdrawing – I think perhaps a defense mechanism due to my reluctance to talk to the doctor about these things. It was easier today than it was last week though and at least I managed not to break down in front of him again. We had another discussion – well actually he did most of the talking. He asked me a couple of times what I wanted to do regarding treatment & I said I’d try medication but had reservations that this was only really treating symptoms rather than cause. He felt that medication was probably the best way to go for me and if I didn’t like it then I could stop. (I thought this kind of thing was a psychiatrists field of expertise – should I be trusting a GP’s recommendation about my mental health?)

Anyway, I walked away with a prescription for Flouxetine with a return to the doctors in 2 weeks. Due to my reservations about medication, I have decided to keep a diary about my state of mind and any side effects that they may have as the drugs kick in.

I arrived at work in a dark mood after the appointment and the boss was dismissive & a little rude which plunged me instantly into a black hole. These black holes are capable of totally consuming me and I find it impossible to put on a smiley face and pretend everythings ok when I’m in one. I took the first tablet at about 11am.

The black hole lasted until about midday – the boss has been a bit more pleasant and I have managed to pull myself out of the black hole but I’m still in a dark place. The doctor mentioned the possibility of signing me off work, but because I work for such a small company I don’t feel this is viable as my doctors note would say that I was being signed off due to stress and my boss just wouldn’t get it at all – especially as we’re not that busy at the moment and she herself is having a terrible time as her father is dying. She is also incredibly indiscreet and I know that she would talk about my ‘condition’ with probably all my other colleagues and god knows who else besides. I would love to take time off as I am really struggling and I think it would help, but just don’t feel like I can as I don’t want the fact that I am clinically depressed broadcast to all and sundry.

I suppose I should mention here at the start of this diary, that I drink about 3/4 of a bottle of wine or 3 cans of lager every day and have recently taken up smoking cannabis resin again – one every evening during weekdays, probably about 3 a day over the weekend. I’ve been reading on the internet that neither of these things are a great idea when on Prozac but I don’t think I can face trying to quit either of them at the moment.

I’ve been suffering with a localised headache at the lower back of my head for the last 4 or 5 days. It was worst yesterday but is still present today – just thought I should note that.

So there we are… day one of medication having never taken medication for depression before… the list of potential side-effects makes for rather alarming reading. Please let this work.

4 Responses to Medication Diary

  1. Prozac is an interesting medication. By all means talk to your physician about your elbow pain. If you have an infection it can contribute to depression. You should not be drinking alcohol because it contributes to depression. Prozac can work in as little as two to three days but the effects are not in the brain. Those effects are in the spinal cord and gastrointestinal tract on Seratonin receptor sites. Prozac will boost the Seratonin to those sites. So if you normally have gastrointestinal problems like irritable bowel syndrome, celiac, or problems with a back injury, Prozac can make you start to feel wonderful almost immediately. Eventually the medication will stabilize and the good feelings will gradually diminish. So having an early response to Prozac or another SSRI would suggest you mention to your physician about any other medical problems you might be having. Prozac will work as an antidepressant in the brain after about 6 to 8 weeks with initial effects starting to be noticed at around 2 to 3 weeks. The medication should be taken every day at the same time. Some people get groggy and decide to take it at night. Others get more energy and take it in the morning. Nausea is a common side effect that diminishes in the first couple of weeks. If the medication isn’t taken daily it isn’t effective. It builds up in the receptor sites and must be maintained at a steady level to work. I’m a psychologist but this information is readily available online. If you have any questions about your treatment contact your personal physician.

    • RescueMyLife says:

      Hi there Margaret,
      Thanks for taking the time to read my blog and respond that’s really kind of you. The information you have given me here is very timely and very gratefully received – I have read various bits and bobs about Prozac on the web, but most information I found felt a little vague and full of mights and maybes. What you have said here is the first I have heard about the possible ‘immediate’ effects (apart from the nausea thing which is commonly mentioned).
      It’s a shame to hear that the initial good feelings will diminish…
      Once again thank you for your time and information.
      All the best

  2. Simonetta says:

    You mention vagueness a lot. You also talk about despair a lot. Could changing the picture on your blog help. Of course it isnt a perfect ANSWER. The strength is somewhere in YOU to move forward from this blackness, as you call it. What is the golden path you are looking for? just some thoughts…..

    • RescueMyLife says:

      Well I am depressed so I suppose it’s only natural that I mention despair a lot – especially as I’m trying to put my feelings into words which isn’t always easy. My blog picture is just a random image I found on the net – I just thought it would be a bit more interesting than the standard default image. It’s an interesting thought that the picture might somehow be keeping me down… but I can’t see that I could be so effected by such an image in this way. My blog is my attempt to move forward, to find my way in life again, to pull myself out of the blackness of depression and live a life with meaning again. That, is the golden path i am looking for… the golden path to feeling human and loving life again.
      Thank you for your thoughts – I really appreciate other people’s perspectives on these things.

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