Friday, September 2, 2011

It's never forever.

It's time to admit that every time the anxiety goes away, there's a little crumb of hope in a crack in my mind, that hopes it's forever. But it's never forever.

Generalized anxiety disorder and ADHD share that fine quality.

Sometimes I wish they would both go away.

10-ish days ago I visited my therapist and I remember she asked me the routine questions. Here were my responses:

Do you have any depression: no
Do you have any anxiety: nope, not really, I feel pretty good
Are you suicidal: absolutely not
Are you homicidal: hmmmm, let no

Each of those answers was absolutely true. I felt great. Any anxiety I was experiencing was directly related to some things going on in my life that ANYONE in the same position would be was purely situational and we had plenty of time to talk about those situations.

This is that other kind, the kind that is almost unbearable. If there was a switch I would turn it off. Medication isn't really a switch. It's a vacation. I am grateful for the vacation, I used to feel this way all the time after all, but it's true that the contrast between the vacation and the return to reality makes what used to be routine harder to bear.

I can't stop tightening my throat muscles in a particular way. I'm unsettled and a little propelled...driven to move, to talk, to "do", and with a certain intensity. I pick at my skin. Uncomfortable in any given moment...unable to settle on a peaceful moment. Like a butterfly I go from flower to flower but each flower is on fire and I must keep moving. Unable to land, I tighten my throat, over and over while my legs search for a way to connect my feet to the floor.

Through this, I function in my life, but it is just so uncomfortable, and I do not enjoy this feeling of intensity. It's just too much.

And what does it mean? My medication seems to do something for me most of the time...except for you know, most of last winter when I was horribly depressed but too depressed to realize that I was depressed. Or you know, every so often, seems like at least once every 6 weeks where my anxiety level just seems to be too much for a bit...some of it is all of it hormones? Are my meds just not right? Is it unrealistic to expect to feel better more of the time? Or am I just so enmeshed in the fibers of this anxiety right now that I'm not even thinking clearly.

All I know for sure is that I don't feel good. I cannot find peace in my own skin, and though I am functioning in my daily life, I am so uncomfortable.

It's never forever. The anxiety...the vacation from the anxiety...none of it is ever forever. And honestly I am worried about what may happen as the seasons change. It took a long time, to recover from last winter's depression. In this northern paradise we call home, winter is long...and here it comes. I'm afraid to get stuck there again. Terrific, now I'm pairing the situational anxiety on top of the chemical one...wahooo!

Maybe I need to print this blog post when I see my prescriber next month. Maybe I'm not as insightful as I like to think I am. Maybe the meds are wrong. Maybemaybemaybe.


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Drumroll please...

...Sonny has decided to try ADHD stimulant medication.

There was no pressure within our household for him to do so, and there was no pressure from outside either, for that matter. After seeing me and our daughter try them, and have beneficial results, he thought he might try them too. Sonny is like me in that he is an adult with ADHD, for whom ADHD presents challenges, but he has also learned a lot of ways to cope with those challenges. He has been at the same job for over seven years, is a busy professional musician outside of his day job, and has lots of friends and social connections...but I think that also like me, even though he functions well, he was interested to see what it might be like to not have to work quite so hard for certain shades of normal every day. He really is the primary parent in our household, very hands on with his children, so he deals with more of the logistics and details that could really be a handful for a person with ADHD to keep track of, and in my opinion he kicks a lot of ass. I can't think of any reason why he shouldn't pursue a treatment that might give him a little more peace in the midst of our very, very busy lives.

So far, he gives them two thumbs up. He's going to try them a little longer and see what happens, assess the landscape. I love him just the way he is so really, as long as he perceives a benefit to himself, and there are no harmful effects to him or anyone else, I'm happy with his decision.

I'm also happy with the way his prescriber has approached it. She has given him a not huge dosage of a non-extended release version. It gives him a chance to try it out without being stuck in it for HOURS in the event that he isn't liking what it's doing. Because he lives with me, he knows that the come-down from a short-acting stimulant tablet can be a little janky, so if that happens it won't be a surprise. He'll try it for a little bit and then they'll reassess.

Good times. We'll see what he decides :)