Friday, March 30, 2012

No Shame

I saw this on Facebook today
If you're familiar with Facebook stuff like this comes along for all kinds of different causes. Mental Health Awareness week is actually the first full week in October, but seeing it prompted me to go ahead and write.

My husband calls me "the sickest healthiest person" he's ever met. I didn't think I was a whiner, but apparently I complain to him constantly about neck and back pain. Chiropractics don't help for more than a day and then I'm hurting again. I live with heated up corn bags around my shoulders (thank you Michelle!) for relief.

A little over two weeks ago Jared insisted I visit the doctor. By insist, I mean he called and text me incessantly until I finally called for an appointment.

I didn't want to go. I felt foolish. What was I supposed to say to her, "I typically don't feel well, what do you think it is?"

Jared pressed because he had the next day off and thought I could go without the kids. I waited until 3:30 to call figuring there was no way they could get me in the next day. I was wrong, my appointment was for 9:30am.

I had serious anxiety going in. My allergies have been particularly rough so I figured I'd start with that. I had Jared text me a list of the things I complain about the most so I could share it with her.

Here's what he sent:
neck and back pain
tension headaches
weight gain (20lbs since last March)
sleeps 10+ hours at night still naps plus fatigue

I asked her to draw my labs for thyroid again. I've been in before with a similar complaint a few times over the last two years. I ask her to draw my labs and put me back on the thyroid meds, the labs come back normal, she refuses the meds and I go home frustrated.

She very gently, yet firmly, refuses to even draw my labs. She looked straight at me and said, "Shannon, you're depressed. It's not your thyroid."

I felt as if she slapped me. I started crying and said, "But I'm happy. I love my husband, I love my kids and we just moved into a beautiful house. Life is good!"

She asked, "Then why are you crying?" I knew she was right. I have been struggling and fighting off the depression feeling like it had no right to be there. She explained that the physical pains I had were from leaving the depression untreated for a prolonged period of time.

She asked me to go on a medication for two months. She said that if the physical issues don't subside, and I don't feel better, she'll draw all the labs I want.

I took the prescription, went to my car and cried. I felt like a failure, I felt shame. I'm strong, or so I thought. I've been on meds before for depression but it was always post-partum and I felt like it was beyond me due to the hormones. That made sense to me. This didn't, I was blindsided.

It took me a while to work through it all in my mind. I went ahead and started the medication thinking I would prove her wrong. Within a week the physical pain started to subside. After about 10 days my nights became much shorter and I no longer needed a nap. Now it's been over two weeks and I've lost 5lbs and feel better than I have in a long time.

 The fog has lifted, the pain is gone, and I am back.

1 comment:

Cindy Coker said...

You're right! There is no shame & I am so glad you're feeling better!