Once a week, Alex takes the girls on an outing and I stay home. That is my day today. The family is off at the zoo watching the critters and I’m having a quiet day. I let myself watch one episode of a cooking show without multitasking at all. Now, I’m writing and I have plans to do laundry and maybe clean the floor once I’ve written enough.
I love my kids. I love being around them, but everyone needs a break in order to be at their best. I’m grateful that we have the space in our schedule this semester to give the girls the special time with their father and to give me the chance to focus on my tasklist without distractions.
We are changing my meds up this week. This is directly because of the issues in my last post and finally managing to tell my doctor about it. My basic antidepressant is staying the same, my supplemental antidepressant is being cut in half for a week and then removed altogether, and to combat the sedative effect of the supplemental antidepressant I have been given a stimulant. I’ve never taken a prescription strength stimulant in the long term, and the dose I’m starting on is moderately high.
Today is Day One of this new medication array, and I expect it to be the day when the stimulant’s impact is most startling. I got up an hour earlier than usual to take advantage of it, and by noon I was dressed (!!!), had putaway three loads of laundry and started a new one, cleaned the bathtubs and toilets, scooped the cat’s litter, watered the garden, worked in my BuJo, and gotten the kids going on schoolwork. It is three times what I have accomplished in an entire day in recent weeks. I know this isn’t likely to be a long term solution, but it feels nice to have access to this energy. I don’t feel high, which I was afraid of. Instead I feel alert and like I have access to the healthy energy levels that have previously been inaccessible.
Once I finish this post, it will be lunch time for the kiddos, then I will work out a plan for dinner and maybe we’ll all walk to the playground. Contrary to the title this post, I can’t actually taste colors. What I can do, today at least, is live up to my own standard regarding what it is reasonable to accomplish in a day. I could cry.
I am so grateful that things came together for this trip. My sister-in-law let us use her timeshare condo without charging us the fee. We found a cheap hotel for the mid-trip overnight, so I didn’t even have to boondock camp between Denver and Corpus Christi. Once we were there, it was a beautiful rhythm of visiting the pool, the beach, the fishing dock, and relaxing with videos. And rather a lot of eating.
My kiddos fell in love with fishing, which will never not feel shocking. My suburban princesses found a friend on the dock who taught them to reel, let them stroke the teeny fish he caught, and then stood with them on the dock for hours when the fish weren’t biting. Mr. Rocky was an absolute saint. He helped us with gettingout dusty rental rod into functional condition, teased us over using neon pink artificial bait, and then afterward sent us a card in the mail thanking us for sharing the dock with him.
I’m grateful for the last day we went to the beach, when the water and sky were so blue I thought I was in Florida. The wind was light and pleasant. Rosebud got over her fear of the surf when it was calm and rippling instead of stormy and gray. Jujubee made a friend with a little local girl and built a pair of excellent sand castles.
I’m grateful that this was my month to have a mild round of PMDD symptoms. I got home with my sanity essentially intact, even though I was on the road for what is the most acute phase. I didn’t break with reality at all! My worst symptom was an increase in social phobia that had me fleeing the community pool when the neighbors got too chatty.
Depression makes you forget. Depression flattens the wonder of the world. We have lived here for scant months, and I have already gotten to resenting the imperfections of this place.
This time last year, we were renting month-to-month from a 94 year old. Seven years ago, I was convinced I would never be a mother. A dozen years back and I was in an abusive relationship unable to give myself permission to leave.
Today I’m married to my best friend, we have two amazing daughters, and we own our home. I’m still sick, the girls present unique challenges, and our home isn’t a Forever Home, but life is amazing. I never would have believed it not all that long ago.
(Graphic by MJ Kocovski)