Sorry in advance for two posts in one day. I thought I should elaborate a little from my other post from today.
So I saw my psychologist this afternoon. I told him how absolutely terrible the last theee days have been, but in particular how absolutely horrible the last two days have been. I have been crying constantly. I’ve not been able to do anything. All I can do is cry.
He pretty much told me we needed to work on my depression and whilst I agree, the methods he gave me just amped up my anxiety. He told me I needed to get out and keep busy. He told me I should go out shopping on my own to get my confidence back. He told me that when I’m home I needed to do things to keep my mind active, like chores and caring for the baby. He told me to colour. Fucking colour.
Problem being… I can’t. The thought of solely caring for the baby spikes my anxiety. And chores? Do you really think I am up to doing all the chores when it is an effort to get out of bed?
When I mentioned medication he dismissed it, told me I didn’t need it and that I could do it on my own. That I should clear the thought from my head and focus on getting better naturally.
I left the session feeling more anxious compared to when I walked in. I felt even more hopeless that I would never recover. I felt trapped and terrible.
So I came home and wanted to talk to my mum- debrief if you will. But she was busy on the phone and with her daycare kids. Reece was asleep, so I took myself to my room.
Where I broke down. I couldn’t stop crying. Loud, heaving sobs.
I’ll never get better. I’ll never feel normal.
And then I noticed my chest getting tight. I felt my throat close over. I felt my breathing accelerate and become shallow. I felt like my insides were clawing to get out of my skin.
I couldn’t sit still. I couldn’t quiet the thoughts in my head. I couldn’t calm myself down.
So I called PANDA – Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia. And I spoke to a wonderful woman. When she answered I sort of didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know why I called. How do you tell someone that I rang because I was scared to be alone in that moment because I didn’t know what I would do to myself.
She spoke to me for about 45 minutes. She told me it sounded like it was time for medication and that I needed to take myself back to my gp to get reassessed. I told her I had an appointment tomorrow so that wouldn’t be an issue.
Once she hung up I realised my mum had a meeting for work. Luckily she took Reece with her, but by that stage the anxiety kept building. Even once she and Reece were gone I couldn’t relax. I tried everything. Meditation. Reading. TV. Sleep (HA!). Laying down in a dark room. Mindfulness. Deep breathing. Deep relaxation techniques. Nothing worked.
I was about to call 000 because I felt out of control. I couldn’t sit still and I felt agitated. I was on the verge of another panic attack. But this was worse than I have ever felt. The panic attack I’ve had in the past were nothing compared to this.
So as a last resort, I rang my doctor office. My gp works nights so I was hoping this was a night she was on. Turns out it was her night, but she was fully booked.
Of course, once I explained to the receptionist that I was on the verge of a mental breakdown and I needed to see my doctor, they managed to squeeze me in.
I messaged my mum begging her to come home and she did. Immediately. Honestly, you’ve got to love mums huh?
So my dad took me off to the doctors. She was running late and my anxiety just kept creeping up.
Once I got in I lost it again. I told her that I couldn’t settle and I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown and I was sure I was a few hours away from being admitted.
You should have seen her face. It dropped. She immediately apologised to me and told me how sorry she was that she made me wait this long. She told me she was going to prescribe me something to calm me down immediately and an antidepressant.
So that’s the story about how I now take an antidepressant. Sertraline.
And how I got Valium. By the way, why does no one tell you how AMAZING Valium is?! Within an hour of taking it I felt better than I have in, well, weeks!
Valium is only short term though. She has told me to take it when I need, but ideally at night about an hour before bed so I can sleep.
Apparently I’ll be on the sertraline for at least 6 months, possibly 12 months depending on how I am feeling.
My gp said that I should feel better within about 2-3 weeks. If the anxiety peaks I can take a Valium though.
I’m also not seeing the same psychologist anymore. She has referred me to a perinatal psychologist who specialises in postnatal depression.
So hopefully things will look up soon. I’m hoping they will.