That Time I Lost My MindYou guys. I feel I should apologize. It’s been rather quiet over here at Indy Homeschool the last couple of months. During this time, I have received Facebook notifications letting me know new people have followed us. At those times I kept thinking to myself, “you need to post more! People will quickly unfollow if there’s nothing going on that’s worth following!” But every time I thought that, I quickly shut it down. Why? Well…

I just couldn’t do it.

I couldn’t write. I couldn’t share. Some days, I couldn’t even check my email. There’s not really a good reason for it. I just sort of… lost my mind.

The story starts back in December. My husband, the sole income and insurance provider in our home, was told that after January, his position would no longer exist. Though we would have six months for him to find a new job, I immediately went into survival mode. I reworked our budget so we could save more money. I put a hold on anything extra that would require money. I started stocking up the pantry on things like canned foods and pasta. I felt like I was handling things well. I wasn’t panicking, I was just preparing. I was totally fine.

Until I wasn’t.

I’m not sure the exact date it started, all I know is that one day, around the beginning of March, I started sleeping in more and more. My boys work well on their own in the morning, so they continued doing their assigned schoolwork, but I stopped doing anything with them in the time I was awake. Eventually, my schedule became: 11:00: Wake up, drink two cups of coffee. 12:00: Go back to sleep. 4:00 Wake up, sit on the couch until dinner. 6:00: Eat dinner, read a book until bedtime. 11:00: Go back to bed. It is the worst I have ever felt in my life, except for the first six months after Big Boy’s birth, when I suffered from a postpartum depression fueled by exhaustion, pain killers, and the crushing guilt of a birth that didn’t go as I planned (because of course it was my fault that my natural childbirth turned into an emergency c-section, right?).

Now, you might think all of this happened because of our high-stress situation. Of course that would make sense. And I’m sure that played a small part in it. But, I am ashamed to admit, I mostly did it to myself. In my survival mode, while saving money and dry goods, I also decided it would be a good idea to hoard my medicine, just in case we lost our health insurance at the end our six months. You know how they say don’t stop taking antidepressants without a doctor’s help? Turns out that’s not just something they say. See, I got the bright idea that if I only took my prescription medication every other day, it would still be working in my system but I would be able to save half of them for those inevitable rainy days to come.

I can’t express to you enough how bad an idea this is.

I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder (I know, that sounds like a fake diagnosis, but I swear it’s a real thing) with a dash of depression thrown in. These are issues that, as I’ve talked about before, I tried for a long time to control on my own, but eventually made the decision to seek professional help and, later, prescription help to deal with. It took a long time for me to be OK with this. I felt like it was a weakness on my part. My thinking was, “everyone gets sad, everyone has fears, everyone feels stress. Not everyone needs to dope up in order to deal with it. Suck it up, Buttercup. Be a big girl.” But, turns out, beating myself up about not being as strong as everyone else wasn’t overly helpful either. So I did what I had to do for myself and my family. I accepted the help I needed, and that help came in the form of both therapy and prescription medication. For me, this is not a temporary problem. It is ongoing. I have anxiety and depression in the way that I have high cholesterol. I can diet, I can exercise, I can meditate, but this is something that will always be part of me. I know not everyone agrees with that, I didn’t for a long time, but this is the life I live.

I thought I could tweak my own prescription. I thought it would be no big deal. I was wrong. I hurt myself. I hurt my family. I fell apart. Moral of the story is the obvious one we should all know: never tweak your prescription without your doctor’s help. Duh.

A couple of weeks ago I went back on my regular dosage. My husband flat out told me that I needed to do something, that I was sick and needed help. He had no idea that I’d been trying to squirrel away meds, he just knew I wasn’t well. I’m lucky, I bounced back pretty quickly. I lost a month that I’ll never get back, but it could have been worse.

In better news, the husband starts a new job next week. I’m getting back on the blogging horse and hope you will all still be around as I catch up on all the happenings I’ve missed in the past couple of months around here. The kids managed to survive, though their education consisted solely of library books and computer math programs for a while. And I’m pretty sure I managed not to ruin too many business opportunities with my absence. Overall, the story has a happy ending. I’m a lucky girl.

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