Sunday, March 25, 2012

Taking care of me first

So, I had a great talk with my psychiatrist about reducing dose. She wanted to know what I was thinking specifically. I told her that I wanted to reduce by 25 mg and see how I did (I'm on Zoloft, so the doses increase and decrease by that much in general). I was thinking that a little less would put my mind at ease (a little less, potentially a little less risk - though my psychiatrist did remind me that the risk is extremely low regardless). Ultimately she said that she would be ok with a small reduction in dose, if I stay in touch with her and let her know how I'm doing. She also said that it was more a way of reducing mental angst than actual risk.

Well, after a week on a slightly lower dose, I feel totally fine and stable. And, I feel strangely more at peace with the decision. I'm not freaking out at all hours of the day, and don't feel any real increase in symptoms. If symptoms increase, I will go back up. I'm really dealing with this well.

She also mentioned that she thinks part of my fear stems from the perfectionism associated with OCD. I agree. I do. I know that some of my fears have the potential of becoming obsessive if I do not take care of myself first. It is a great lesson in learning to live with uncertainty, as well as learning to take care of myself so that I can take care of the little bean growing in me. Trust is hard for me, but it is powerful.

So, I am working on some mindfulness, and working to ask myself whether the thoughts are reasonable or distorted. And, spending some time thinking about how things may just end up being good - truth is none of my serious fears have ever come true.

My first OB appointment is in a few weeks. Maybe that will make this feel less surreal.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Well, so far things are going alright. I'm exhausted, and I've definitely had some food aversions. Otherwise, things feel pretty unchanged physically.

OCD has decided to play with my head some more. I suppose I should have expected it, and I didn't do a great job of warding it off. I broke down and began searching online for stories of women being pregnant on antidepressants. Big Big Big mistake. I guess that whole "compulsions only aggravate anxiety" thing is true. I ended up calling my psychiatrist and leaving her a message saying I was considering reducing my dose and that I wasn't feeling comfortable with the idea of being on medication now.

I wasn't able to answer when she called me back, but she left me a message. She said she really thought about it, and that she preferred I stay on the same dose for several reasons. She said she thinks that my fears are OCD fears and that reducing may increase them. She also said that several of her patients have reduced dose during pregnancy and ended up relapsing and requiring a higher dose than they were on before to treat the relapse. We are set to talk tomorrow evening to have a real conversation about this.

 It is so scary. I just want to do everything right. I suppose I want to have the perfect pregnancy and the perfect outcome. I keep trying to remind myself that there is no such thing as the perfect pregnancy, but, I'm not sure it's helping.

At least there is no morning sickness...

Sunday, March 11, 2012


Well, that was fast. I'm still in total shock. My husband is away right now, so I had to wait and tell him when he called me. I'm excited and terrified. It was confirmed by blood test today.

I called my psychiatrist the day I found out and left her a message. She called me back and left me a message that said a few things:

1. Congratulations.
2. She wanted to let me know that some women experience clinically significant moodiness early on and that if I felt more than the occasional weepiness that I should call her.
3. That it was a really smart decision to go back on the medication and that she wanted to remind me that it was the smart choice.

The OCD has tried to poke through a few times with doubts about whether the meds are a mistake, whether I am already making mistakes that will forever cause harm to this little poppy seed sized bean.

Also- I'm terrified that it won't last. That there is something wrong with me that won't let me have this kind of happiness.

All of that said - I do feel like I'm managing. I'm being fairly reasonable (outside of the 5 home tests I took to try and get it to feel less surreal).

So, now I'm humbly asking for your support. Nobody understands my mind better than all of you. I'm hoping it starts to sink in soon. It is really a weird feeling.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Mindfulness, CBT, and the ever ellusive Trust

Long time no post.

Since my last post, I have begun therapy in addition to my monthly meetings with my psychiatrist. My new therapist spent a lot of time working in the NICU with parents who have had babies with problems, which is frankly perfect for me because my latest obsession has to do with me taking medication, using the microwave, eating or drinking what I shouldn't (GMO corn, splenda etc.) and causing life long problems to my future baby.

She reminded me that:
1. I am not pregnant at this time, so I am causing myself a lot of distress over something that isn't actually a current problem.
2. That there will be unknowns during pregnancy no matter what I do.
3. The only thing I CAN do to help have a healthy pregnancy is to listen to what my doctors tell me and that no amount of internet searches on the possible things I can do wrong will make the anxiety go away.

She also had me take the thoughts and graph it (mentally) on how much it intrudes on my life. For example: not using the microwave when pregnant. probably not a big deal, I can easily live without it. Verses, not taking my medication - a big deal. The likelihood of relapse and my not being able to take care of myself like I will need while pregnant is high. I'm still super freaked out about the meds thing, but I have to try and trust my doctors, and learn to accept the fear of it. In fact the biggest ERP will be just getting pregnant and accepting the anxiety along the way.

She also has said that focusing on a combination of CBT and mindfulness may be the best course for me.

"I'm feeling anxious about XYZ and its here. I don't like this feeling, but it won't last forever. Even if my deepest fears come true, I will be able to deal with it and move forward."

So as for updates. Hubby and I are actively trying to conceive. No announcements yet, but I do think that through the anonymity of this blog, I will be able to share all the early details if I do manage to get pregnant. If I do, I know I'll need the support of all of you fellow OCDers that get how my brain works.