Check-in

I’ve been having a harder time coming up with stuff to write lately. I fear I’ve said my bit. But I’m always afraid my latest post will be my last.

The thing is, right now, one of my closest, longest term friends from California is visiting me, so that means I have less time on the internet as well.

There is good news however. She has been here since Sunday. She spent the first couple of days in a Bed and Breakfast so I didn’t have her here at home, but we spent several hours together each day. Busy days and I’ve made it and I’ve felt good. This is the first time in several months I haven’t had to sit down every ten minutes to recuperate from walking or even standing too long. On Monday we walked all over the nearby downtown for 5 hours. And yesterday was equally busy though we didn’t do as much walking.

Last night she came to my house. I slept 11 hours last night and woke up at 9:30–my husband woke me, I was still out like a rock. Clearly I was exhausted. I’m usually up at 6 or 7 am, but I’m still functioning! I just got up and so did she. I told her I need at least an hour of quiet time when I wake up which she gratefully welcomed as she said she is the same.

Today we’re going for a hike to a watering hole to swim and tomorrow we’re going white water rafting!! I’m being totally ambitious. But so far so good!

And though I am pushing a bit, I am also being gentle with myself. Monday we spent the day together and I was invited to spend the evening with my friend and another friend of hers who also happens to live here. I really wanted to go. I don’t have more than one or two good friends here and I was thrilled to meet her friend on Sunday. She is a kindred spirit. I truly hope to be able to continue a friendship with her after my friend leaves. So I could’ve pushed and gone to dinner to try to spend time with this woman and I really wanted to, but I knew this time, finally, that I had to go home and accept my limitations. After an initial moment of great disappointment I felt relieved. I’d made the right decision.

There is no telling how long this reprieve will last. I will at some point continue my tapering of the drugs at which point I may suffer more debilitating fatigue. I’m very grateful for this time, however, and it came at such a good time. And it will rejuvenate my mind and soul so that I can take on the next stage of my withdrawal.

9 thoughts on “Check-in

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  1. Lost track of this thread, but thank you for all the responses even though I’m late getting back. I’m not a health food person, really can’t be on a renal diet and eat at all, so I have no philosophical objection to caffiene. I certainly have more of a problem feeling okay with taking an anti-depressant because of my feelings about supporting big pharma as opposed to buying fair trade coffee…

    I do find coffee soothing oftentimes. Not always, but most of the time. I guess that is paradoxical, but I also get agitated by benadryl which makes most people sleepy.

    Sounds like lots of folks use coffee the way I do, which is nice to know. I read that suicide study somewhere else a while back but it was men and women and it was dose dependent, you had to drink 4 cups a day or something like that.

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  2. Caffeine has a paradoxical effect in some people and can actually calm the mind. I’ve got a couple of friends that experience this and use the coffee instead of meds.
    That study Gianna speaks of about suicide and women and coffee is actually quoted on a coffee sale webpage. I will try and find it, it was in Newsweek or something a few months ago, but the article didn’t clarify any stats; so I Googled it and found the study promoting coffee sales.
    Black or Green Tea can help, so can dark chocolate[not milk or white chocolate].

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  3. I was up, but very tired. I could have a lot to say about coffee, but it will probably be a confused jumble. I have a love hate relationship with coffee/caffeine. I don’t actually drink coffee anymore as I simply don’t tolerate it at all. But I have an ongoing love affair with black tea (which has theanine in it–a calming amino acid which offsets the horrible coffee reaction I get with caffeine in it) that I constantly feel I should break off. It does, at time act as an anti-depressant, but it backfires on me too and makes me agitated sometimes–it also makes me crash sometimes into an uncomfortable hellish mood.

    There was a study years ago now, in which they found that women who drank coffee were less likely to commit suicide.

    In my attempt to go natural (whole foods and such) it is also my intent to quit caffeine. I’ve been told by many natural health practitioners and in all my withdrawal email groups that coffee/caffeine should be avoided at all costs for mental health. Something about it taxing the adrenal system. Frankly I’ve not researched this enough. Very likely because I don’t really want to know for sure.

    I’ve radically changed all aspects of everything I take into my body. I truly do not eat junk virtually ever–that means no processed or refined foods whatsoever. And when I do it’s literally one bite of something. I’m hard-core. And I believe it makes a difference.

    But then I’m addicted to caffeine. I still have a cup of black tea virtually every morning and sometimes I drink some later in the day. I don’t feel well unless I drink it. The catch is sometimes it makes me feel worse. And with my chronic fatigue it makes me feel “good” in a way, but it sort of masks the fatigue and there is something unhealthy and abusive about it in the way I experience it. I’ve also outright abused it at times. Several bags in a cup to get a lift to force me out the door. I always pay when I do that.

    Anyway, I have no idea if this is answering your question. Your use of caffeine seems somewhat sane and metered and not out of control. Mine truly feels like an addiction and that is significant, I think. If you control the dose and don’t drink it all the time and don’t become dependent on it it seems harmless.

    But to directly answer your question, which I truly have not done, is that yes I think a lot of people use caffeine as an antidepressant.

    My question is whether it’s healthy or not and perhaps that was not your concern, I don’t know.

    Sorry if I went on an on and didn’t answer you well enough. You hit a delicate spot for me. I don’t feel I should drink caffeine. And I feel a bit of a hypocrite for drinking it, because I’m such a health nut. But my drinking it is indeed with the hope that it will make me feel better–yes–as an antidepressant. The kicker is that it does indeed with some frequency backfire on me.

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  4. Maybe the wrong place to ask this, but has anyone else used brewed home coffee as an alternative to anti-depressants? I can’t take anti-depressants and the only one that worked, Wellbutrin, gives me more insomnia than I already have from kidney failure and PTSD and makes me agitated. Coffee on the other hand only gives me mild insomnia and only sometimes and does not make me agitated at all and works right away, no waiting and I control the dose.

    Does this sound off the wall to folks?

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  5. ‘And it will rejuvenate my mind and soul so that I can take on the next stage of my withdrawal.’
    …and hopefully renew your belief in yourself that you can do this; anything, infact!

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  6. Yes, keep writing. I like to read. It gives encouragement to the rest of us. I feel like I am “passing.” Nobody in my new town knows I am bipolar. I am all the way off meds. I would love to blog, but I don’t dare because of my job. I just love the internet. I would never have know about all these people out there if it wasn’t for the internet.

    Today Kitty Dukakis was on the radio and talking about her elecroshock treatment and really promoting it. There were all lot of other people promoting it…all I can say is…she talked about how the anti-depressants did NOT work for her.

    We need you on the web to open people’s eyes.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14754161/site/newsweek/

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  7. What a nice visit. I’m so glad that your feeling of wellness has continued. I’m sure you’ll be in a much better place when you begin to taper again…your body just needed a bit of a break. Also–even if you don’t post all the time, your journey off meds is continuing, so do keep posting. I’m sure I’m not the only one out here cheering you on and I’m sure your work gives hope to many. I have found that the issues that surface when going off meds and rethinking diagnosis show up in surprising places, so more posts will come to you! (easy for me to say…I don’t have a blog!).

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