Tag Archives: Depression

I’m not supposed to cry.

It’s bad for my lash extensions. Yes I am vain enough to go in every 3-6 weeks and have my girl individually glue on fake eyelashes. I do this, because, well, it makes me feel pretty. I rarely wear any chemical filled makeup, and I can stay in bed until the last possible second in the morning, then have a 10 minute shower, forget to put on deodorant, and go to work.
I am not supposed to hold back when I feel like crying because it’s bad for my chakras, emotional build up and overall health. It’s a conundrum.
So why is a girl who should feel pretty with her fancy new eyelashes, crying? I’m feeling rejected. I’m frustrated. I haven’t eaten enough today. I’m going to break down the how, what, and why.
It is insane at work right now. NUTS. We are up considerably over last years sales, and the store already does huge volume. We do millions in sales every year, and with a new till system plus increased volume, I’m a little stressed.
Cortisol, it’s a mother f@#ker.
My computer situation hasn’t improved. It’s broken, the other one has a virus and is slow, and the web browser on my iPad isn’t super cooperative for blogging recipes. I can’t upload pictures from my website partners windows/android platforms to my apple gear, and I generally find the actual writing of the recipes, well, if I was an oyster I would have made a few pearls. Cooking, love it, photos, all new to me, but okay, I have an artistic eye, sort of. Writing, I must for my well being, but messing around with spacing etc and putting in the recipes. Blech. And photo editing I may enjoy, but now, I am so completely clueless about it all. I hate not being an expert. HATE not being the best, fastest, smartest. Right now I am learning so many things it’s all over whelming and then I don’t have time to just cook, or just write because I have to mess about with all the other stuff.
I’m feeling isolated. I haven’t reached out to my friends or family, I haven’t seen them, I haven’t been on many dates, just one hike last weekend. One glorious hour away from the website. I have spent all day at work, all evening in the kitchen fighting with an oven that’s too hot, a computer that doesn’t work and trying to master original recipes and professional quality photography. By. My. Self. I used to cook with other people, My blog cohort, but he is busy programming. I can’t grab a tea and sit in the sun blogging at starbucks while I blurt out my thoughts and feelings because I’m stuck in the kitchen, again, By. My. Self. I have submitted some photography to food porn sites, and for every picture that is accepted 5 are rejected. I don’t often hear “No” I have realized. Again, I’m used to being the one that calls the shots, that has done the homework, has read the book, not just watched the movie. I know things about things. Add rejection to the frustration that every submission takes a photo resizing, a description, a write-up, the correct and innovative tags and 15 minutes of my life that I will never get back. To be rejected, because of composition, or because I can’t crop on my touch screen and I’m fighting with my tablet the entire time. It’s all so subjective. And it makes me want to throw something. Phew after that little pity party, I feel better, ish. At least I stopped sogging up my lashes.
Again, Cortisol, it’s a mother f@#ker.
I shouldn’t be blogging on here. I have been trying to drive traffic from this blog to that one. But honestly, why would you readers from here want to go over there? I haven’t put any content on there. I haven’t told any stories, or divulged any salacious tales. I haven’t been outside the kitchen. There has been no “50 shades of Holley” (thanks L, love that!). I worry maybe I’m not funny anymore. Even If I had a couple entries, the new blog, it’s like a new pair of jeans. It’s nice, looks great. We have gotten a LOT of compliments on it. But it’s not… comfortable. It doesn’t yet fit the curve of my ass quite right. There’s maybe a little chafing. I wrote a piece yesterday to post about the day a year ago I was hysterical, low, hopeless, and I used a dirty gym sock to blow my nose. My blog partner said it was too much. Too sad, too low. (more god dammed rejection). Maybe he’s right. But that’s where I was. I felt like I was at the bottom. Sunk. Disparaged. I got better. (Makes me think of monty python skit “she turned me into a newt! …I got better…) I made changes, I did the work. I had the support. I feel like people who shared in your lows subsequently are more cherished when they then get to share in your highs. Speaks to the quality of readers I had, and kept when I was Debbie downer. I feel like new readers need a little perspective on the drastic changes that can be made. The progress that can be had. The extreme swing from where I was a year ago, to where I am now, and where I could be a year from now. Maybe I’m not giving the new blog a chance. It’s like making a new friend. You can’t just push them into the deep dark end of your emotional pool. You have to coax them in, let them get comfortable with the temperature of the water, then send them into the deep end. Or off the deep end. Hahaha
I need to go eat…Dairy Queen. Because altho I have this clean eating blog, I’m still addicted to sugar. And I feel like I want to console myself, and watch trashy TV. If I get a banana split, it has fruit, that is like a salad? Yeah. Tomorrow I will yoga after work and start one of the 4 lifestyle books I bought today, maybe the 21 day sugar detox should be on the top of that list. And maybe write a recipe.

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The stress spiral

This week has been one of victory and defeat. Today I feel especially tearful. I am done my progesterone for the next 14 days, and I am afraid I will be the crying mess I was before. Maybe It’s just because I was out late last night, and I’m lacking sleep. Maybe I haven’t eaten enough. Food prep and consumption is a chore. I have, at the advice of my therapist been forcing myself to do things. Surprisingly this works. I made it to work on time last week, barely… but I was there. I also worked full days, 8 hours. I did my dishes, and stripped my bed, did a little laundry. I had to as I was attacked in my sleep by some sort of insect again. I must be delicious.
I finished the book “Why men love bitches” and found it really spoke to me. I have to love myself. I have to be emotionally healthy, I have to stop mothering and taking care of others before myself. A part of me wishes I could have another try at some of my previous relationships, but I guess I need to take away from them what I learned, and leave it at that. If a re-do is in the cards it’ll happen. Plus, I’m not really ready yet. It helped me see my pattern, and shone a light on my insecurities. I am unsure of where I go from here, maybe the therapist will have some techniques. I see her tomorrow.
I started reading “Why zebras don’t get ulcers”-Robert M Sapolsky. I read the intro and the went straight to the chapter on depression. It is quite technical, so I am relearning some biology, but I had some ah-ha moments. It was focused on major depression, but the theories transfer. The idea that a chemical imbalance in the brain, in combination with family history and major stressors usually will result in depression, and every individual will cope or not cope differently. He outlined a “early morning wakening” where depression sufferers will wake early (or have difficulty falling asleep), it disturbs the normal pattern of sleep and dreaming. Well what do you know… I suck at sleeping in, even if I’ve been out late. I liked this (page 234) “it is easy to think of the person as energyless, enervated. A more accurate picture is of the depressive as a tightly coiled spool of wire, tense, straining, active-but all inside. A psychodynamic view of depression shows the person fighting an enormous, aggressive mental battle.” Absolutely true, as my hormone panel showed HIGH morning cortisol levels. I was awake with a stressful jolt. This is where once again I am reminded I need to love myself, tone down the negative chatter, depressives will often feel like they “don’t deserve” He explains that elevated glucocorticoids (Glucocorticoids are a class of steroid hormones that bind to the glucocorticoid receptor, which is present in almost every vertebrate animal cell. The name glucocorticoid (pertaining to glucose + cortex ) derives from its role in the regulation of the metabolism of glucose, its synthesis in the adrenal cortex, and its steroidal structure, cortisol (or hydrocortisone) is the most important human glucocorticoid. It is essential for life, and it regulates or supports a variety of important cardiovascular, metabolic, immunologic, and homeostatic functions-Wikipedia) add to not only the chemical make up of depression but of stress, and the entire hormone system will be unbalanced. “People who seemingly have depression of a purely psychiatric nature turn out to have thyroid disease.” My thyroid blood test was normal, but the naturopath has me on homeopathic drops and a biomed supplement.
“Statistically, stress and the onset of depression tend to go together. People who are undergoing a lot of significant life stressors are more likely than average to have undergone a recent and significant stressor” Well what do you know, job change, money, move, divorce (for all intensive purposes altho not technically). Then he delves into Freud, psychodynamics and learned helplessness. Freud felt that melancholy occurred when there was a loss of a love object (“object” is usually defined as a person, but could also be a goal or ideal). Really fascinating. I am going to read the book, from the beginning, I just couldn’t stop my impetuous self from chewing into the depression chapter. The link between stress and depression is mind blowing. And the way that psychological factors can modulate the stress response and physiologic response on top of it. Did stress cause my hormone imbalance, and my depression? I didn’t cognitively acknowledge that I was stressed. Did my poor self image exacerbate my stress? And the stress fed my poor self image? He also touches on the illusion of control, “If you believe you have control over stressors that are, in fact, beyond your control, you may consider it to somehow to be your fault that the inevitable occurred.” I was thinking it was me, I lost myself, I could have done things differently, been better, smarter, braver… maybe… maybe it was all far beyond my control.
It is a clever and intricate domino set up. Each tile tipping ever so slightly, clattering atop one after another in a wave. Falling together and falling apart simultaneously.
I had a full day yesterday, went out to where Karma and her husband were camping, had some laughs, worked on my freckle population, did a couple work errands, read a bit then showered and went to the bar with a girlfriend. I am avoiding alcohol as it is high in sugar, and a depressant. I wore no make up, and nothing fancy, tank, capris, sensible flat shoes. Ready to undertake some dancing and people watching. It was an interesting crowd. There was a soccer team (mid 40’s) up to play golf that surrounded us, lol, danger, as I have been both a golf and soccer widow… I had one especially forward fellow ask if “we were going to make out?” I said, not likely, and certainly not with each other. He continued to encroach on my personal space, and pecked at my cheek like a nervous bird, not the first time this has happened to me… I finally asked him to leave me alone, and he said “wow you are tough”. I’ll take it, then he said “you are probably married” I just smiled, and turned away. I wanted to reply, “so are you…” I was mildly jaded and found the entire experience a little bluing. But it was nice to go out, I find even being passively around people, at the gym, here at starbucks, comforting. As awful as I know it sounds to get male attention… damn me and my external reassurance…fully dressed and sober was nice as well. I texted Vanessa this morning and asked where all the “good” men were. I also texted my worry exchange partner that I was worrying about the man situation again. They both said, nearly the very same thing. Prince Charming would not be found in a bar, and that he would find me. Likely doing something I love. Makes sense as the one boy I found I really liked, hated the bar… And he was found by chance. My dad always said that you couldn’t discount meeting someone anywhere or any time. His point was that arranged marriages can work, so you could very well meet someone by chance at the bar. Maybe not likely, but possible. Not that any of this matters as I am obviously not in the emotional or mental space for a relationship. But then I start to worry, when I am ready will I find someone else that is? Really? It’s like waiting for the “right time” to have kids, it’ll never be perfect… All this is forefront in my mind after the night out, and it being Father’s Day family is also flashing on my radar. Everything in time. I’m getting ahead of myself and inciting un needed stress… which leads to depression… which isn’t good for my self esteem…or body chemistry…and now I’m dizzy going around in circles…

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What the heck is emotional health anyways?

I realized, physical health, easily deciphered, mental health, a little more abstract, but I understood what it was. Emotional health had me mystified. I spent a fair bit of time ignoring emotions. Not dealing with them, stuffing them down, willing myself to overcome them. So what seems to have happened was like a jack in the box, they have all come shooting out. From the reading I have done, emotional mental and physical health are interconnected, leaning up against one another like a teepee.

“Before taking your first step for improving emotional health, you must completely understand the meaning of the term “emotional health.” Emotional health is the ability to deal with the ups and downs of life. There should be a strong connection between your brain and your heart so that you are able to understand your feelings. You must be flexible about the changes of your life, and you must be able to accept them heartily. Improving emotional health is extremely important as our emotions motivate us to achieve our goals in life.”

http://health.mashangel.com/healthy-living/emotional-health/emotional-health-and-wellbeing/

“It is greatly imperative to let go of grudges and release hard feelings. Accumulating ill feelings will do nothing but cause emotional toxicity. Emotional poisoning awfully affects your physical health.”

Factors Affecting Emotional Wellness
There are various elements that can affect your emotional wellbeing. Some of these are:
Loss of a loved one (thru death, divorce, estrangement)
Natural disasters
Unfulfilled expectations
Setting unrealistic goals
Poor self-image or inferiority complex
Poor physical health
Loneliness

“Pulling yourself from the depths of despair can be slow, painful and difficult, but this is very essential for you to move on with life. Dealing proactively with the aforementioned factors can help foster wellness and influence your emotional wellbeing. Here are some suggestions that can help nurture your emotional wellbeing:

**Grieving from the loss of a loved one is a natural process. It is important to give yourself time to heal. You can turn to family and friends for support or find peace in your faith. You can also seek help from a grief counselor.
**Most of us suffer from various problems in life because of high expectations. Unrealistic expectations from family and friends, or with regard to career or business, invariably result in intense disappointment. Recognizing this truth and trying not to expect too much from life may help you cope with disappointments.
**Another important aspect in emotional wellbeing is setting realistic goals. Put your skills and abilities to the best use but recognize your limitations. It is helpful to be practical and play to your strengths. Try to reach to your ultimate goal one step at a time and celebrate small successes.
**To accept love from others, you need to first love yourself. A poor self-image could be a result of criticisms or negative judgment from elders during childhood. Overcoming this is especially tough, as this has been rooted in you since you were a child. It can be beneficial to tell yourself that no one is perfect. Focus on your good qualities and encourage yourself. It is very important to recognize bad situations that could trigger negative thoughts. Do not fight these, but accept them and deal with them.
**Positive thinking is the “vitamin” for emotional health. Keep yourself surrounded by those people who uplift you and make you feel good about yourself. Moreover, avoid blaming others for your problems and unhappiness. Remember, circumstances can influence your life, but a positive outlook can help you deal with them.

Mental and physical health are interconnected. A healthy diet, exercise, and good sleep can contribute to your emotional wellness. If you feel depressed and emotionally disturbed, then you should not feel embarrassed about talking to someone and asking for help. Consult a wellness coach or seek help from a therapist. Effective treatment can make you a productive individual of society.”

I combed thru a pile of websites researching “emotional health” and how to improve it. I did just score particularly low on a test… not like me… lol, I had to know why, so I can nail the re-test! Sadly I am only kind of kidding… The body of information to improve was, positive people around you, Thank you Cherise and Vanessa for being the shores of my river. The reason I get out of bed every morning. L&T for the date, Libs, Candace, Miss E, D, Karma, Goldy, Brooke, C, S, My bro and sister in law, my parents, and so many others! I’ve been awful needy… The web suggests yoga and or meditation, something I have been missing. Maybe because I need it most I have been so resistant to committing to it. It’s painful, not physically, but emotionally, hey big red flag that I should have been dealing with! The “intermission” I took from my ex, I did yoga 5 or 6 days a week. Again depressed, skinny, sad, but maybe the compulsive yoga helped me cope. I still didn’t feel better about myself. Something in the middle is probably where I need to fall to be healthy.
I think that the demise of my emotional health was holding onto old hurt. Not feeling good about myself and digging a hole to crawl into. Then covering up the hole with an insane amount of activity, work, 30 dates, etc. Now I have time to myself, I’m in this deep and damp hole, and it smells funny… Reasonably I should be able to cope, but I can’t.
I want to be clear, I do not blame anyone or anything for my current state. It wouldn’t do a lick of good helping me out of this rut, and would actually be damaging to my recovery. I am an adult, and I have made decisions about my interpersonal relationships, friends, work, relationships. I think I have put an extreme amount of pressure on myself for perfection, and letting yourself down is a root cause of emotional decay. This is not anyones fault, including my own. I am processing the sore spots and determining where I need to work first.
It starts with me. I have to find my inner bitch. And then let her loose. I need to cement the notion that the only thing I have ever done wrong in a relationship is stop putting myself first. That includes my relationship with myself. I am enough, and I will not quit until I am convinced this is a true statement. In fact I am more than enough…

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Moderately mild, mildly moderate, or somewhere in between

I am depressed. I have 6 of the 9 signs of depression. When I stop and think, I have been depressed for quite some time. Initially, post break up (the big one, which I think I will start calling TE1) I was so busy I didn’t have time to process, grief, depression, anxiety. I worked every day, moved, had weddings to attend, close, dear friends weddings on top of it. The people pleasing me wanted to be there for them, celebrate their joy, love, special day, give a kick ass, and funny speech. But I think I was more like Adam Sandler in “The Wedding singer” Singing love hurts and pushing back tears. I was sad and fat. Feeling shitty about myself… really just getting thru. Not fair to my near and dear friends, and not fair to myself. I am sorry… not sorry in a way that I could have changed what I was thinking or feeling without a lobotomy, but sorry I couldn’t be honest with myself.
I knew after my Dr Visit that fateful january a year and a half ago I was depressed, but still wasn’t ready to address the underlying issue. I am not sure why I am so against anti depressants for myself, I see no harm or shame in other people taking them. I want to do things the hard way maybe, always have. I want to push uphill, claw and get there myself. It’s an inherit flaw. My Therapist asked if there was a family history of depression. I laughed. Yes. My mother has withdrawn for periods over the years, and I come from a long line of recluse type women. Strong, determined shut in’s. My mother talks about my great grandmother, she was depressed. Who could honestly say that they don’t have depression in the family? The stats are staggering and those are REPORTED, there are far more cases that go un reported!

http://www.cmha.ca/media/fast-facts-about-mental-illness/#.UbfA82S9Kc0

If you are having thoughts of suicide, giving up, hopeless, not enjoying things you used to, anxiety, incessant crying, please seek help, there are crisis lines, support groups and MSP covered therapists.

http://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/factsheet/depression
https://www.interiorhealth.ca/YourCare/MentalHealthSubstanceUse/MentalHealth/Pages/default.aspx

I’m not 100% sure about the therapist I picked, but I am willing to try another session before I make up my mind. Her assessment was that I am moderately depressed. My naturopath said during my sacrocranium exam, mild depression. Either way, depression. Not crippling, but a struggle. I had some wins today, I got out of bed before 9 am. I almost made it to work on time! I showered, and wore real pants, jeans and a t-shirt instead of sweats. I stayed at work all day. I had to reward myself mid afternoon with a chai tea and some biscotti that has been in my office since christmas… but does biscotti ever really go “stale”? I only used 2 tissues, ALL DAY! I researched natural ways to raise serotonin while sitting in the sun at starbucks, then spent 60 minutes at the gym followed by grocery shopping. I purchased some power grain cereal, and omega rich fish. I ate dinner, chicken whole grain nachos. I even considered doing my dishes… I don’t want to get tooooooo carried away.

http://www.naturalnews.com/026332_serotonin_natural_fat.html

Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/serotonin-boosters/#ixzz2VyAfyZKH

While researching I came across this… “Oxytocin is another feel good hormone often called the “cuddle hormone”. Oxytocin is released when we feel love, trust and comfort. It can be even more powerful than serotonin. If you need a lift, remember the power of simply spending time with your significant other or family members and friends.” So that explains why Goldy made me feel better!
I will embrace this opportunity to work on my foundation, find strength in myself. Now is my time. Celebrate the small things until they become big things.
One other aside, I stepped on a scale today and took measurements, 178.6
neck 13
bust 42 (back to Jan #)
waist 33 (back to Jan #)
hip 41 (down an inch since Jan)
left bicep 13 (up an inch since Jan)
thigh 21.5 (down 2.5 inches since Jan)
calf 15 (back to Jan #)

Physical health is still important, but my focus needs to shift to emotional and mental health as a primary concern!

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blah blah blah… sniff… sob…

I should be thankful. I am smart. I am personable, when I’m not buried in a mound of sogged up tissues. I have potential to sparkle. I am hard working, flexible, shapely and strong. Reasonably attractive, I like the color of my eyes, and hair. I have good skin. Pink and freckled but few wrinkles and relatively blemish free. I have huge boobs, aside from a double sports bra for long runs and an absence of spaghetti straps, you can’t go too far wrong with that. I have nice teeth. I have my basic needs met, a roof over my head, food and clothing. I have rewarding and incredibly supportive relationships with a large array of people. Professionally, I am good at what I do, and recently was awakened to the option of doing something different. Well a different title, but looks like similar job duties. My family embraces my every endeavour and is so amazingly supportive.

If it wasn’t for the e-mail from my mother, and the texts from Cherise and Vanessa early this morning I would not have gotten out of bed. Point blank, stayed in bed, completely regardless of the sunshine and 30 degree weather. The fact my house is a MESS, and I have work to do at work. I would have stayed in bed. I am thankful for the added motivation this morning. Yesterday I slept in, and to make up for going to work late, I left early. I have this awful headache, it’s a two day-er so far. Likely a combination of hormone fluctuations, anxiety and depression. I came to starbucks, and couldn’t get the internet to work, so I talked to my parents, and watched people walk by. After a while I wandered up to the used book store and picked up a couple titles.
“Why Zebra’s don’t get ulcers” and something about using mindfulness and compassion to ease anxiety. I don’t remember the exact title. After my used book shopping I went home, ate, and folded my mountain of laundry. Went to the gym and had an inspiring sweat from your elbows kind of workout. I did it alone as Karma is crazy busy this week. I don’t love the gym alone, but I did feel better. Afterwards D came over for turkey and veggie stuffed peppers and Billy Maddison. Libs sent me some awesome texts and I felt ok, even good by the time I went to bed last night. What the heck…

I have done some research, (thanks Brooke for the resources!) depression looks like a fit, and in addition to hormone fluctuations I need to be better at cutting myself a break. The anxiety seems to have crept up on me, I felt like this for months post break up, but when the feeling went away, I figured I was over it. Nope, just experiencing adrenal failure. I am now feeling everything, old and new, in a glorious rush…and a whirling tilting table of hormones on top of it. In addition to the reading and quizzes I’ve looked at I’ve also been reading up on councillors in the area. I have found one I am interested in meeting, and sent out an e-mail. I’ve also done some looking into free therapists, but haven’t made much headway. I need to talk to someone. I feel like such a burden to my friends and family, like a real downer… but this is where I am right now and I need help. It’s funny because Cherise said, I don’t hesitate to answer my phone in the middle of the night, or patiently listen to sobbing snotty explanations from others, on countless occasions, and it’s only fair other people should be able to reciprocate. I had a friend today tell me without the lowest lows you don’t get the best, she is positive that there’s a whole lot of awesome waiting for me around the next corner. I keep hearing that, everyone near and dear is so sure that amazing is in my future. I need to get ready for it. Or else you all are a bunch of dirty fibbers…
Ok so , books to read, time for myself every day, guilt free texting and phone call to friends and family. A naturopath appointment friday, a therapist appointment later this or early next week. Giving myself a break, trying to get my laundry put away, and dishes done. Going to start small.
I was encouraged to date again. I think it would be a distraction, and I need to be with myself, like myself, not just say I do, but actually do it. I need to “Be the woman I want to be”. (Thanks Cherise…) One of the boys I previously dated (low expectations, the one who I met wearing an obviously dirty shirt and unbrushed hair) Texted me to see if I would see a movie with him. I told him I wasn’t really in a good spot and needed to work on myself, but going to a movie, as long as there wasn’t any other expectations would be ok. Around mid morning I realized that today was the day and nearly had an anxiety attack. Full blown melt down. My poor co-worker, all of a sudden I’m tearing thru the tissues in my office. I texted him and cancelled. I am obviously not ready. Obviously… lol.
I have a couple topics I need to write, maybe after a therapy session or on the weekend… they are some good-ers… half a box of kleenex or better! I’m going to go buy a couple boxes of the goood stuff!

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