Saturday, January 21, 2012

How to make difficult decisions...

Well, I had a long long conversation with my psychiatrist this week. All about the SSRI I am on and wanting to try and get pregnant. She started by telling me that she has had a lot of experience helping women through their pregnancies while on various medications and that while there are no controlled trials (hard to get the approval to do them), Zoloft has a 20 year track record of really good anecdotal evidence of safety. She went on to say that she has helped women who have gone on to have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies. She also said that in her opinion, there is no reason why I shouldn't start trying if that is what we decide. She said she would go through the entire pregnancy with me to help me through it, and she reminded me that not eating, sleeping, and constant anxiety and depression are without a doubt not healthy for a baby. No official decision yet, but I'm leaning toward just going for it. My husband has been amazingly supportive. He is unbelievable. I am incredibly lucky and grateful that I get to go through life with him. I just don't want to let OCD make this decision. OCD has ruled my decisions for far too long. I was without an SSRI from last spring until this fall, and it was so bad. Worse than I remembered it being. But, in a strange way, I am grateful for that period of hell, because it lead to an accurate diagnosis and gave me a reason why my mind cycles around obsessive thoughts the way it does, and that there is this whole community of OCD sufferers whose minds work like mine does. I'm also grateful for the support I've found in this community. I know that SSRIs and pregnancy is a really touchy subject, and I hope that I'll be supported no matter what the decision. Like many of you, I am really concerned with the possible judgment of going down that path.

In other news- I have an appointment to begin CBT! Part of me hopes that maybe with therapy I'll be able to reduce my dose a bit if I do get knocked up. But, we'll see. I'll be sure to keep you all updated on it all. I'm feeling positive.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Oh Baby

I've been wanting to be a mom for as long as I can remember. Part of me never imagined that I would every be in a place in my life and be able to be in a healthy relationship - so clearly not in the cards. Well, I've had a lot of struggles over the last few months. The OCD smacked me hard and took control. Well, as hard as it was, I went back on medication and now, I am feeling really good. Yes, I still spike here and there. OCD doesn't give up easily. But frankly, I really want to try to have a baby. But, I'm scared. I don't think I can be without meds. My psychiatrist has helped a lot of women through their pregnancies and reminds me that, yes there have not been controlled trials, but there is really good anecdotal research that shows that SSRIs appear safe - and that not eating, sleeping, constant anxiety, and depression have certainly shown not to be healthy for a developing baby. It scares the crap out of me. It is a perfect situation for "what ifs" to sneak in and halt me in my tracks. I don't want to spend my life waiting for it to be ok. I don't know that there will ever be a time when it will feel ok. I will freak out no matter what. If someone is smoking around me, if I drink any caffeine at all, if I walk by the exhaust from a bus- there is no safe place. I will not have the perfect pregnancy and be the perfect pregnant woman. I spent so much of this fall researching reasons to be on meds, or not be on meds, this scary study, that scary study. And, I know, I know, I know that any more internet research is going to keep me in a holding pattern. I've spent so much of my life being afraid of unknowingly causing myself, or others disease and harm. I know that piece is likely going to make it really hard during pregnancy, postpartum, parenting. I am certainly at risk for postpartum depression.

So, this is a controversial topic. And, I hope by posting this to find some support, and not more reasons to fear. I'm afraid of letting this one out. Because people are so opinionated when it comes to medications for psychological disorders and mental health. It makes it harder for all of us who are not just "happy" on meds, but are able to function with them. It is physiological. It doesn't make us weak. It makes us strong for facing our deepest fears and accepting help. 

Thursday, January 5, 2012


I have a really hard time saying no. I mean, a really hard time. Especially at work. I feel guilty if I haven't gone above and beyond, and frankly I'm not even sure if my interpretation of 'above and beyond' is the same as other people. Ultimately, I end up feeling overworked and cheated. I made a mini goal of setting boundaries with my boss, and it is really hard. She emails at all times of day and texts all the time. I feel bad ignoring texts and emails after work hours, but I cant think about work all the time. It is just too much. And, the stress agrivates my OCD and anxiety. I want to quit half the time, but I'm in a holding pattern while I finish the next 17 weeks of a "residency" like period. Maybe I'm just grumpy today. I get frustrated. I love what I do, but not the company I work for. There is just more stress than what is necessary to do a good job effectively. And, of course, in typing this, I'm afraid my boss might stumble onto my blog, figure out it's me, and I will have offended. I will resist the urge to scour this post for clues as to my identity.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year, all about health and acceptance.

My husband and I rang in the new year in AZ with a couple of friends. A trip scared me. My first panick attack in years hit me on my last trip and the memory of that is still clear, still strong. Not only that, but part of the plan included a big outdoor party (nice warm weather in AZ)and I was really nervous about spiking in a huge crowd. Well, I did spike a bit. And, I did spike a bit. I had to take this as an opportunity to let the anxiety come without analyzing and ruminating. It was hard, but I got through it. I even enjoyed one of the sweetest NYE kiss with my husband. So, I take last night as a success for me. It wasn't a perfect night, but anxiety didn't paralyze me, I looked it in the face and still had fun. Here's to starting the new year one step ahead of OCD.