I have never been scared of going to the doctors or hospital. I spent my early twenties with endometriosis and have suffered many an uncomfortable exam, so I’ve always been pretty pragmatic about getting naked in the name of medicine. When in labour with Hux at my first exam/sweep I remember turning wide eyed to Will saying “did you see that? She put her WHOLE HAND in. WOAH”. In general I find the world of modern medicine fascinating rather than scary and if I could just get over my fear of vomit and blood and grow some compassion I would love to be a Doctor.
So no, I’m not ashamed of my body, my bits. We all have them and they all do weird things.
My mind though, my brain, now that’s another matter. That scares me. It’s a total enigma.
Last Monday morning found me sitting in the waiting room at the doctors surgery, lip quivering, waiting to see my GP. I was terrified that I was going to have to admit defeat and depression to my nice lady doctor and I didn’t know how to do it without crying: I really hate to cry in public. While I was waiting I read through my last couple of blog posts on my phone so I’d have a clear idea of what I wanted to say to her but I felt sick to my stomach.
When my name was called my heart leapt into my throat and my tummy flipped. I sat down in front of the GP.
“I think I might cry now” I said. And I did.
She was very sympathetic and quick to help. She asked about my sleep, my support, the ages of the children. She agreed I was teetering on the edge of a big black hole and straight away told me that my concerns about going on anti-depressants were not particularly valid, I needed help now. She offered a referral to the health visitor which I eagerly accepted and agreed I was doing the right thing with my exercise and booze-free plans. She told me CBT wasn’t realistic at the moment as the waiting list is 6 months long but I want to be added to it and potentially send myself privately in the new year. I left with a prescription for antidepressants and a massive sense of relief.
Taking antidepressants is not somewhere I wanted to be right now. But hey, 3 years ago when I was living the high life in London the countryside was not somewhere I wanted to be either. I need to remember that I have 2 little lives that depend on me so I don’t have the luxury to wallow any longer in the state I’m in… I need to get better. And so I have started taking the scary little white tablets.
I know they will take a little time to get to work but since I started talking I have been feeling so much better. I feel like I’ve opened the floodgates and I don’t want to close them: I have PND and I am not afraid to talk about it. I must remember this feeling and keep talking, remember that it’s ok to speak to my friends and family about how I’m feeling. A bit trickier in real life as I have the tendency to weep a bit but it’d do me good to get over this fear of public crying.
There have been some rubbish side-effects, however. Insomnia, weird unconscious teeth grinding, ever such a fuzzy head and drowsiness. I’ve developed bad anxiety – on New Year’s Eve I was convinced there was a burglar hiding under my bed from the hours of 1-3am – not ideal as Will was working away. I lay there for two hours convinced I could hear someone breathing under the mattress. But I’m told these are short-term symptoms that will ease soon.
Read the post about when I realised I have PND.