Friday, September 10, 2010

"Why, Shirley, that inheritance IS delightful!"

LORD, You have assigned me my portion and my cup;
You have made my lot secure.
the boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance. -Psalm 16:5-6

So, an ironic twist to the new chapter of joy: I am going through the physical symptoms of depression. Some of you might be able to personally relate to this. If you've never been through it, let me just say, it is miserable. It's like slogging through wet cement. Taking a shower is exhausting to the point of being almost painful. I feel so little like myself that I don't even want to engage with anyone because I just feel flat and not myself.Okay, so here's the deal: in January of 2007 (feel free to go check out the blog archives from '07 to get more of the story) I got really sick while I was living in Venezuela. Eventually I came back to the US to try and get some answers I couldn't get in Venezuela.
I'll give you the short version of what the Infectious Disease doc said. I got a mosquito-borne infection somewhere in Venezuela and for most people it would have been no big whoop. But my body overreacted to it and actually shifted my brain chemistry. Kinda cool, except it waaay screwed up my brain.
The end result is that I am very low on serotonin, just like people that have depression. So, all the same symptoms and same medication. The awesome thing is that it's an easy fix, really. Just some meds that don't really have much side-effect.

I've known since this whole process started that as time wore on the medication would plateau in its effect and I'd have to start taking a higher dose. Not really a big deal, exactly, except the only way I know it's time is when I hit the plateau. Well, I hit the plateau. I'm not sure how long I've been here because it takes a while to figure it out. But I'll tell you this much, they call it a plateau, but it feels more like a crevasse. Crevasse with a capital...well, I'll let you choose which 3 letters of crevasse I want to capitalize and we'll keep this a family place. It's deep, dark, lonely, and I am just waiting for help to arrive. The extra meds should do just that any day now.

One of these mornings I am fully expecting to wake up with those drugs dancing around my brain like some sort of dream team of Shakira meets Beyonce meets Justin Timberlake pretending to be Beyonce and I will be singing some sort of victory song. ("Eye of the Tiger" has been my standard, but it doesn't really fit with the dance crew I've just lined up...could go with Shakira, but her videos don't go with my earlier "family place" comment, so let's go with "Footloose." It's a classic, plus there's this suh-weet video I can put up with it).

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