Tina, over at Bringing Along OCD, described a feeling of ‘blah’, and it’s so apt for where I’m at now. She describes ‘blah’ as being unable ‘to summon the energy and desire to do much activity beyond what I have to do: go to work, take care of the surface things at home, do some writing, sleep’. This sounds all too familiar to me, particularly the last week or so. I’ve been doing some reading around it, and have come across a term called ‘functional depression’. In a nutshell, this basically means experiencing a lot of depressive symptoms, but being able to keep going despite them. The symptoms aren’t severe enough to interfere with day to day life, but they certainly interfere with a sense of well being.
For me, this kind of has me feeling as though I’m in a state of limbo. When I last saw the psychiatrist, I described how I was feeling – the noisy head, lack of concentration, inability to focus, lack of motivation – and she said they were all very much symptoms of depression, so she increased my medication. Unfortunately since then I’ve experienced some rather alarming side effects, and after talking to my GP, he agreed that my body wasn’t tolerating this increase, and that I should come back down to the original lower dose. I wasn’t on the increased dose long enough to feel any benefit from it, so I’m back in limbo land. It’s a strange place to be.
Day to day, I’m generally ok. But Hubby has noticed I’m more agitated, more inclined to snap. I struggle to stay motivated at work. Persuading myself to get out for my evening walk with the dogs is challenging, and yoga is still on the back burner. I’ve no interest whatsoever in cooking, and am doing a considerable amount of comfort eating. Therapist suggested that I try reading a book I’ve already read and enjoyed, to see if that would help me to focus. No joy. My head is still very noisy, something I’ve described before. I have a brief respite from the noise when I wake up in the morning, there’s generally a few minutes while I’m in that groggy early morning phase that things are reasonably quiet, but then it crashes back in again. There’s no particular problem that I’m worried about, it’s just a jumble of thoughts crowding in and vying for my attention at the same time, which quite frankly, is exhausting.
But from the outside? I’m doing fine. I’m functioning at work. I’m keeping on top of things at home, or at least most things. I’m interacting fine with my family (although interestingly, M asked me this morning if I was going back to the hospital). I’m talking to people. There’s just something missing, some spark, the energy that makes all these day to day things not only doable, but enjoyable.
So there you have it. Thankfully, I’m a million miles away from the bubble. But, there’s still a way to go. Whether it’s going to be medication, therapy, or just hard slog that gets me there, I don’t know. Most likely a combination of all three. But sooner rather than later, I would rather get from functional depression to just plain living, because where I am now, it doesn’t take much to make those depressed feelings much, much stronger. Lack of sleep (yesterday, tough day), a bad day at work, not eating right……..it’s still too easy for me to slip. It won’t always be like this. This in itself is a huge improvement. But I’m ready to improve more. I want to improve more.