Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Doubling the dose

The effects of the Lexapro have gotten worse. Last Tuesday, I was feeling dizzy, like vertigo. I had to sit and meditate so that I would feel safe to drive. I was feeling even more depressed than before. I wasn't drowsy, as I was previously, but I was the most depressed and anxious that I'd been in a long time. I had some periods in which I could concentrate well, but I was still generally feeling shaken.

I'm still clenching my teeth a lot. I've picked up sighing as a new tic.

I called the doctor, to ask what to do; should I quit it? Is it worth it to keep taking the Lexapro if it's making things worse now—does it get better? She wasn't in right then. I started to feel indignant.

Some of my neighbors, here in Baltimore, feel like they're automatically in opposition to authority figures. I remember one time I was watching a car wreck. The paramedics showed up, and my neighbors yelled threats at the paramedics for being a little late. The paramedics yelled back, as they put the shock victim on a stretcher.

I felt sort of like that about my doctor being unavailable. I was surprised; I never feel that way.

When I did get back in touch with the doctor, she told me to double the dose. I'm now at 20 mg of Lexapro daily, which is the maximum. That was Thursday. On Friday, I kept commenting out loud, 'I feel really good!' I did! I still felt a little down, but I felt some chemical happiness that helped me beat it.

That didn't last. I've been increasingly down since then, and the chemical happiness vanished.

Today, I generally felt pretty terrible. Right now, I'm feeling pretty okay, though. These things helped:
  • Caught up with a friend on the phone
  • Went to the grocery store
  • Washed dishes
  • Cooked couscous
  • Meditation
  • Hung out with church people
  • Fixed my computer
  • Ate a whole mango, it was very ripe and delicious
  • Wrote

It's very strange to do the things that I enjoy, but still feel very depressed. I keep telling myself, 'This normally makes me happy, so I bet it would today.' It's very confusing. I keep trying to separate the depression from my true character as a person, I keep trying to externalize it, to say that the bad feelings aren't truly how I feel. I'm afraid, though, that that line between me and my psychological problems is wrinkled if it's real at all.

I had some snacks today that helped:
  • Smores
  • Gummi worms
  • Trader Joe's itty bitty oatmeal cookies, the kind that are small so you can eat twelve of them and not feel bad
  • Trader Joe's JalapeƱo Cheese Crunchies

Also, I've been listening to a lot of The Beatles' Abbey Road album, Raffi, and Dog Traders, but I've been listening to They Might Be Giants the most. I love their songs Doctor Worm, New York City, Climbing the Walls, and The Cap'm. I normally listen to podcasts except for when I'm working. I've not reliably had the concentration for them to hold my attention, so it's strange for me to be listening to music as much as I have been.

1 comment:

  1. I definitely know how you feel concerning this. I myself have been taking Concerta (an anti-ADHD medication) since I was in second grade. The main side effects include 9 hours of being able to focus on anything, 8 hours of extreme loss in appetite (I can eat no more than about 1/4 of what I normally would), 16 hours of insomnia, and sometimes (usually) about 9 hours of depression. I definitely know how it feels to be doing stuff you should enjoy, but aren't. I as well always try to draw that line of "This isn't how I really feel, it's just the depression of the medication," and it is occaisionally successful. In my 12 years of fighting these meds, I've found chocolate and friends to be the best methods of combating the depression. Good luck dealing with the Lexapro + depression man :D