Depression · Family · Health · Life · mental health

Eyes Open

Two weeks ago today, I took my last Duloxetine tablet.

It has been a very long two weeks.

The weeks before that, where I was alternating between my ‘half dose’ tablet and no tablet, were not my favourite either. After stabilising nicely onto the half dose tablets, I hoped that the transition downward would be just as smooth – I was feeling good.

The on-off period was a mixed bag – I felt a bit woozy on the off days and was desperate to pop my pill by the end of the second day (I take them in the evenings because they make me drowsy). But then by the end of the third week (I did an extra week because we were on holiday when I was supposed to come off the tablets and I didn’t fancy it!), the opposite was happening – the days when I did take a tablet were the days when I felt sick.

So I decided to take the plunge and stop.

I thought that the first three days or so would be the worst and then I’d be okay…

I thought wrong.

The first three days were fine – I actually felt good and thought I’d cracked it and got through the hard bit.

Then I woke up on day 4 and felt like I had been hit by a bus.

I was dizzy, nauseous, exhausted, achey, my eyes hurt, there was a herd of elephants tap dancing inside my skull and all of that together resulted in me either being sick or being asleep.

Caius was away for the first week so very little got done around the house as my days consisted of waking up and getting the kids ready for and to school, coming home, being sick, going to bed again until school pick up time, getting the kids and then fighting through until their bed time (Usually with a bit of throwing up included), then going to bed myself.

Rinse and repeat.

The second week was better. I was able to do a bit more – my brain felt less full of cotton wool, I didn’t get so dizzy emptying the dishwasher that I had to sit down and I was able to stay awake during the day.

Throughout all of this, however, I remained mostly positive. All of my symptoms were physical things, not mental. I wasn’t having anxiety attacks or really low mood swings. I felt rubbish and frustrated but I felt mentally bright.

The worst is done now.

The withdrawal is over, it’s been long enough to get everything out of my system and for my body to recalibrate itself without the medication.

Now comes the hard bit – the real challenge.

The bit where I have to see if I truly can go it alone and keep my head above water. I am hopeful that I can and I am going to try my very hardest – but I have made a promise to myself not to ignore it if I can’t do it. Because that’s what I did in the first place and it didn’t help anybody.

I am tired and still feeling a lingering dizziness and fatigue that I suspect might be Anaemia rearing its head again – I have made an appointment for a routine check up with the doctor and am going to have my eyes tested soon too. It seems like a good time to have a general health check.

The last few weeks have been about getting through, they have involved a lot of comfort food and sleeping, and I am showing the physical side effects of that.

I am hoping to focus the next few weeks on making myself feel healthier. Both with the check ups and with my lifestyle and attitude – I need to be more active and I need to eat better. Less pick-me-up chocolate and sleeping all day and more top-up-the-vitamins fruit and walking to school.

After all – it’s only 2 and a half months until Liberty’s wedding and I need to be on top form for that. And in better shape to buy a new dress for it, too!!

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