Genetics vs. Environment

I’ve only been depressed one other time in my life.  And by using the word “depressed”, I mean exactly that – the feelings of helplessness and hopelessness that define depression. I was angry and sad all the time.  Nothing felt right inside of me and I never wanted to be alone, but when other people were around, I was mad at them for being happy and healthy and I didn’t know how to change that.  Now, I have to give Will his props because he really hung in there even when I was at my worst and anyone who knows me knows exactly how vicious I can be.  All this was right after my surgery and I had about two weeks worth of morphine and other very serious pain killers pumped into my body and I was on pain killers at home (that is what happens when you get a nice 6-8 inch hole sliced into your body and your appendix removed along with 8″ of your small intestine) but let me tell you that two weeks worth cycling through your system and then going cold turkey feels a lot like with drawls.  So, I did what any normal person would do and I went to see my doctor and broke down and sobbed like a little baby begging him to fix me.  He prescribed me a low dose of Xanex and also 50mg of Zoloft/day.  That is a low dosage, but he told me to start slow and we would see how much I needed before going any further.  Well, this made me a crazy person for the first two weeks because I would go through phases where I couldn’t stop talking, or where I didn’t want to talk at all, or I cried because I was happy, or I cried because I was sad, or because something was slightly funny and I’d start to laugh and then be unable to stop.  Plus if I was sitting down watching TV (I still had my surgical drain in and couldn’t move around a lot) I felt like I needed to get up and do something, but when I started to do that, I was in a lot of pain and started to feel like I needed to sit back down or go to sleep or do ANYTHING besides what I was doing.  Finally the medication leveled out and I was good to go.  My moods improved and eventually  I got that stupid drain out and slowly life got back to normal. 

I was on the Zoloft for about 6 months or so when I decided that I didn’t need it anymore and weened myself off.  (I talked to the doctor about it, so no lectures please)  Of course the same things happened coming off the medication as the levels in my body changed, but it didn’t seem so severe this time around.

Lately I can feel that same darkness creeping around the edges of my subconscious.  Will and I have been under a lot of stress lately financially, but there is all this other worry that I have like the fact that I moved here 3 months ago and have yet to make a single friend.  Will is friends with April and James, but I seriously feel like they are HIS friends and only accept me because we’re a package deal.  I left all of my friends and family behind and followed the man that I love 900 miles away from everything that was familiar and stable to start a new life together here because it was what he wanted more than anything.  I could tell by the look in his eyes when he would bring it up before we made the decision and I didn’t want to be the one to take that away from him and I also didn’t want him to regret it later in his life with me.  So, that was a double-whammy.  Afterwards, all the financial bullshit  happened and that put added stress on the both of us, plus we’re always extra tired and irritable with one another. 

All of these things keep compounding on top of one another and I feel like I’m sinking very slowly into that same depression as before and I have no idea how to stop it or if I even can.  Maybe I have no control over it because depression runs rampant in my family.  My grandmother suffered from depression and so does my Mom and my brother.  I’m sure that there are other people who have in my family as well, I just don’t know about it.  I have this feeling that part of it is genetic because my Mom wears the weight of the world on her shoulders.  She is the kind of person who has to control everything and when she can’t, she gets all frustrated and depressed.  I am the same way. My life is out of control right now and there is nothing I can do about it.  No quick fix, no miracle cure.  Just hard work and perseverance.  Ugh…that sounds so exhausting right now. 

So, I have no idea which it is: environment or genetics or maybe it’s just my period talking, but either way, I’m barely holding my shit together right now. 

Thanks for being the shoulder I needed to cry on.  I promise less depressing posts to come!!

BTW, Will – thanks for the pep talk earlier, I love you, you pain in my ass.


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