Tag: Mood

Tis the Season to be Soggy

Tis the Season to be Soggy

All I can say is Yuuuuck, summer is officially over.  Yes I know that technically it’s been over for a while now, and theoretically there’s also been another season thrown in there, but still, in my mind it’s just over now.

Tis the season to be soggy

A few things have forced this particular conclusion on me.  First, and in no particular order, there’s the snow/slush on the cars and ground this morning.  As temporary as it may be it’s still there and is a reminder of more yuuuuck to come.  Second, as equally depressing, is the occasion of putting the fifth wheel away for the season.  Yesterday I had to winterize it and take it to it’s winter home.  Lastly, it also means the gardens and plants have to be put to bed, no more flowers and chirping birds.  None of these are cause for celebration in my mind.

Many of you may look forward to the winter and what it typically brings.  I may at some point in the future too, although right now that looks like the distant future.  Winter brings the snow for all the outdoor enthusiasts, skiing, snowshoeing, but for me I think ‘shoveling’ and that’s partly where the yuuuuck comes in.  There’s also winter boots and parkas, sometimes bitter cold, and let’s not forget the lack of daylight.

Sure, it can be a beautiful season.  Yes, Christmas is in winter, and all the happiness that it brings.  There are good things.  But for me, right now, this minute, it’s yuuuuck.

I know this is a temporary thing, this mood.  And I’m sure I’ll get over it.  I’m pretty adaptable that way.

A New Med Regime Is In Order

A New Med Regime Is In Order

I’m dropping the meds, well not dropping my medication totally just dropping the dosage.

When I was first diagnosed with depression the doctor put me on 30mg of Mirtazapine, an antidepressant with the added benefit of being a sleep aide. In addition to my feeling emotionally crappy I had also been having trouble sleeping consistently.  Subsequent to that we raised it to 45 mg as I felt had stopped making progress, maybe I had even regressed a bit.  In hindsight I wonder if any of it was true.

20121019-233653.jpgA number of months ago I lowered my dosage back to 30 mg and then some time after that down ever further to 15 mg. This was after I had left work, not retired officially but was in the process of burning all my vacation and banked time.  I was feeling better and whether the decision was right or wrong I wanted to get off the “juice”.  My wife questioned my decision.

A few days ago I reduced the dosage down even further to 1/2 of one of the 15 mg tablets, or 7 mg +or-.  Only time and the stability of my disposition will tell whether that was prudent or not.  And these changes are all without the doctors advice or knowledge.  Again whether right or wrong I can’t say.

I still maintain my “depression” was more situational than psychological and upon further reading on a number of topics I also now wonder if emotional intensity is a factor.  Certainly the symptoms jive with my mood swings and their intensity but more reading will be in order before I can definitively say.

I guess the bottom line, or where the rubber meets the road, is where I’m at emotionally, how my mental health progresses.  That is what it’s all about isn’t it?  In that regard I’ve been feeling quite good lately, maybe even very good. Hearing myself say those words scares me though, like I’m waiting for the other foot to fall. I’m expecting some imminent decline in my mood or mental health. I’m thinking the doldrums must be around the corner because this is too good to be true.

What is around the corner is winter and with it the shorter days and less sunlight. To compound the seasonal issues we live in a river valley at the confluence of two rivers. One of those is a bit warmer and the mixture of the two, combined with turbulence from the nearby dams makes for very foggy mornings.  A double-whammy, seasonal change and weather fluctuations.

The lack of sunlight has been detrimental to me before and as a means to cope with it, to mitigate the dreary days, I was using a SAD light. This was after a doctor’s suggestion that I had Seasonal Affective Disorder (SADs).  I saw significant improvement in my moods after eating my breakfast in front of the light.  I was no longer as tired later in the day and my sweet tooth shrank to where a large bowl of ice cream at 9 pm was no longer a requirement.  On the whole I felt much better.

I haven’t used the SAD light in a couple years now.  Instead I now take a fish-oil supplement, an Omega 3 capsule, and have begun increasing my intake of vitamin D.  Both these changes seem to have helped me and the last time I tried the light I didn’t feel as much of an improvement.

Of course I am maintaining the supplement regime, I sleep better, my diet’s improved, and I’m putting concerted effort into improving my exercise schedule.  All these are good things and I’m “hoping” they are enough to keep me well.  I know “hope is not a plan” however I’m optimistic my new meds regime won’t backfire.

Wish me luck, please.

Why DO We Camp?

Why DO We Camp?

20120730-162440.jpgWhy do we camp, emphasis on DO as in why DO we camp?  I thought I knew the answer but like so many things now I’m doubting what I do and don’t know.

I think I’m in a funk, I’m “funking”, and while it’s not a terminal condition it is one that is nevertheless somewhat debilitating.  I’m not really in a bad mood as such, it’s not that my knickers are too tight, it’s more that I just feel tired and somewhat out of sorts.  Is it because I’ve f***ed with my meds? (that will be another post).

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Depression. Mine is……well, Depressed – pt.2

Depression. Mine is……well, Depressed – pt.2

In my previous post I was giving a bit of an update on how I see things have gone for me lately, how I’m feeling better and generally less angry and frustrated.  I think I’m coming out of this tunnel called Depression. I believe I can see a light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s not an oncoming train (I hope).

I discussed some of my symptoms, the treatments and path I took to deal with it, the meds and my visits with a counselor.  I left off with the discussion about if the death of my sons had any role in my depression.

More to the saga – read here

Depression. Mine is……well, Depressed – pt.1

Depression. Mine is……well, Depressed – pt.1

I’ve been feeling pretty good lately, not at all angry and as unhappy as I was before.  My depression, if that what it is, seems to have diminished or become depressed itself.  I was never 100% sure it was depression but as I understand there is a broad spectrum of symptoms and I had a number of them.  In some ways it’s hard to remember really what it was like during the bad times but I think some mental health issues are like that, in that when you start feeling good you forget a bit about what feeling bad was like.  I have a sense I didn’t like it much.  Being as I’m in a good space now I thought I could update things a bit.  Have a seat with me and let’s roll.

Intrigued? Read more

A Fire in the Hole

A Fire in the Hole

I wish I could say I’m back with a vengeance and there’s a Fire in the Hole but that would only be wishful thinking. It’s been nigh on one month since I’ve shared anything with you and and while the holidays can take a portion of the blame it’s really only my own apathy and a general personal malaise that are responsible.  There is a pent up desire though and look out if and when it explodes.

My meds have been boosted and I had high hopes, dreams that I would once again be whole and ready to do my blogging best to spill my guts. It just never happened.  If it’s the depression I’m not sure, but I don’t feel appreciably better and my passion for the blog has waned.  It is sad that I’m saying this, and I know in my gut and in my head that while it may be true, it truely isn’t, if that makes any sense.  It’s true that right now I don’t have the passion to blog but It’s also true I want the passion to do just that.  I think/hope I can get it back, I believe I have the knack for this and I’ll do my utmost to get back my fire.

On a positive note I have been maintaining my personal journal, all hand written, and my proverbial guts are spilled there, but you haven’t the opportunity to read that now do you?  Maybe it’s for the better as it is mostly a routine bitch fest and not really the least bit entertaining I don’t think.  Here at least I have the opportunity to provide some entertainment (hopefully) and even something thought provoking, maybe stimulating.

So I’ll work on getting this fuse lit.  I hope the powder’s dry and the winds of malaise don’t overpower me.  If I can keep it going we’ll see some action, if not……..stay tuned.

Move, Phase 1 complete

Move, Phase 1 complete

Friday 16th

Well we’ve done arrived. The first phase of dads move has begun. We have come to Kelowna to overnight and then onto Langley tomorrow to load up his things and bring him home. Not home literally but to a new home for him.

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Tuesday 20th

I began the post above on the first night of the move, rather the first leg of our trip.  I had every intention of putting more “ink” to paper and wanted to diarize the events over the succeeding days but did not have the heart, nor the intestinal fortitude.  I was tired even at that point.  Even as time went on I thought I’d feel more communicative but such was not the case.  As I update this after it’s all over (I hope) I can see that it had only just begun.  Maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s my disposition or the make up of my character but my head was swimming and somehow maintaining the blog was a distant desire.

Update and Some History

Update and Some History

So I missed yesterday, as far as blogging goes, and according to the blog gods that’s not a good thing.  If you hope to keep people following your blog you need to keep it current.  At this time I don’t think there’s anyone reading so it probably isn’t as important, however good habits I need to build and this would be one of them.  If you start something, then finish.

I said in one of earlier blogs “The Challenges I Face” that I’d give a bit of a background so here goes.  I really began noticing that I felt crappy last year.  I went on a fishing trip with friends and on the drive, which took a couple days, I started to ponder, and dwell.  Now dwelling is not necessarily a good thing.  Likely I was in a bad place emotionally, perhaps (likely) one the symptoms of the depression.  I began to think of suicide, now don’t get freaky on me here, I thought about it in the way you might think of purchasing a new boat or a house, something that you wonder what it’d be like.  I had no interest in doing myself in, just wondered how someone could get to such a place that suicide seemed like an appropriate response.  Now this is probably where I differ from many, or maybe not.

The illness of depression, if you will, has many faces.  That much I know from the limited reading I’ve done to date.  Some will likely say “I know exactly why someone would want to end their life”, others will be more like me, where you are dissatisfied with many things in your life and you can’t put your finger on why.

I remember many years ago talking to my friend Dave, I don’t recall the specifics of the conversation but somehow it related to happiness.  I clearly recall saying “I’m just not happy”, now why would that stay in my memory for so long, when I can’t even remember to take out the garbage every week?

My point I guess is that I believe I’ve been in this state for quite some time, it didn’t seem particularly unusual though so no reason to search out a cause.  Chalk it up to “just life”.  I thought my circumstances were normal, just a typical male life in a married with children lifestyle.  Certainly you could say that is normal or typical, who could argue, but as I’ve later come to realize it was more than that.

So that continued for some time, that was probably back in the 80’s, and my mood or disposition vacillated along the way.  It was only last year that it seemed to peak and I thought about seeking out a second opinion, which I did earlier this year (2011).  My first step was to mention it to my wife M, and it wasn’t necessary to go into details, that would only muddy the waters.  I also wasn’t sure how to say that I had reached such a state that I had thought about divorce.  I don’t think about it now, except again in the same context as I’d mentioned suicide earlier, what brings a person to that point?  She was supportive, having gone through the program herself years earlier I think she must have realized that it wasn’t like a death knell, I wasn’t going to freak out and slice her up, but it was more like a call for help I was putting out there.  I made an appointment with my Doctor, my new Dr. to be exact, as my old doctor had retired.  I thought I needed to confirm that there wasn’t something obvious wrong, a body chemistry issue or something like that.

My first visit was quite uneventful I must say.  We talked, he asked my a bunch of questions regarding sleep habits, eating, drinking, drugs, emotional state, and then concurred with my diagnosis that I may be suffering from a mild case of depression. He also agreed, as I suggested to him in the appointment, that I should seek out some type of counselling and we would revisit the matter in a couple weeks.  As part of his diagnosis he had a battery of tests run to ensure there was nothing significant in my chemistry that might cause or contribute to these symptoms.  Apparently your throid can cause an imbalance in your system that can throw you out of whack.  Like my medical terminology?? I should mention my earlier doctor had suspected mild depression about 3 or 4 years earlier, that’s another story.

(to be cont)