After I wrote my fitness competition wrap up blog the other day, I got a question from a friend of mine who reads my blog. She asked me “do you think you would have been as successful on your journey had you not taken the step to get your meds right?”
Well, you may or may not be aware of this, but I’ve mentioned my depression situation before. I’m not ashamed of it. In fact, I’m more than happy to talk about it if it will help someone else with similar issues in their own life get the help they need. Or to help them realize that not everything is something that they can or even that they *should* do on their own.
3 years ago, I went to my psychiatrist for the first time. I actually thought I might have had bipolar disorder. I had had doctors tell me in the past that I had a dysthymic disorder, borderline personality disorder, general anxiety disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, major depression…heck, they even thought I had schizophrenia at one point (I didn’t sleep for 3 days due to a major anxiety episode and as a result, I hallucinated due to sleep deprivation, so they admitted me to the hospital and gave me Haldol…no fun at all). When I saw my new psychiatrist, he talked to me for a while and told me that he did not believe I had bipolar, but that they dysthymic disorder that presents with anxiety was the more likely diagnosis. He put me on Cymbalta, which worked well for me for about a year and then after about a year it stopped being as effective. So, he switched me to Lamictal and Risperdol. I have been on these 2 meds for close to 2 years now and life is great. We had to tamper with the doses a little bit, but we’ve got it so I’m stable now.
To answer her question…no, I don’t think I would have been successful in the journey over the last year had I not been stable on my meds. It just goes to show that when I was having some “bleed through” issues with my depression and he had to adjust my Risperdol, I stalled out with my weight loss. Also, the other thing that has been instrumental was the therapy I went through last summer for my binge and disordered eating issues. Therapy really helped me be more aware of the cycles and feelings that were happening when I was engaging in those types of eating behaviors. As a result, I’m able to recognize when they are happening and stop myself before I engage in the behaviors or before I get too far into them.
I am a firm believer that you should use all the tools you have available to you to complete your journey to the best of your abilities. If you have health insurance that covers therapy and mental health professionals, use it. It’s a blessing, believe me. If you don’t have health insurance that covers these services, a lot of times you can access them through community centers and services that are free or have reduced rates so that you can get the help you need.
If you need someone to talk to, please feel free to let me know. You can leave a comment to this blog with your email address. I will get notified of the comment right away and I will write down your email address and delete the comment so that no one can get it and spam you.