Where To Go Next

It has been a while since I last wrote. I hope everyone is good! And If not, that is OK. It is OK to not be OK. This is something I want to scream from the highest and the lowest places on Earth for all to hear. We need to make this idea the norm. The world needs to know that it is OK to hurt and it is OK to ask for help when you hurt. Mental healthcare is needed more than ever and it just isn’t where we need it to be. Not even close. I think it has gotten better here in the United States, but the pandemic has brought on sky rocketing numbers of people experiencing some degree of mental illness which has saturated the care available and now it is hard to get in to see someone especially if you are not established. Keep going. Keep trying. You are worth every effort you put into yourself. You are worth every effort because you deserve the best life you can have for yourself. I do believe this to be true for everyone.

I’ve been working through some medication changes for the last couple of months. It has been an adventure, as getting in to see my psychiatric nurse practitioner has been possible, but the availability is sketchy. Nothing against her, but mental healthcare is saturated and there is nowhere near enough caregivers to go around. So I am doing my best with what I can get.

The good thing is I do like my nurse practitioner. She is thorough and spends the time with me that is needed during my visits. We have been working on getting my medication right. This has been an ongoing saga over the past three years. I get somewhere and then someone leaves the practice and I have to wait for someone new to take over. I do hope that my current person stays on for a while, and I can finally get consistency, which I feel will help to translate into finding the right medication to fit into my equation.

A couple of months ago, I went off of one of my anti-depressants (I am still on the other) and started on an anti-psychotic. It is still used to treat my depression, but we are trying a different combination to see how it effects me. We chose this one as it ranked high on a list that came about from a gene-sight test I had that helped to identify which medications might work best for my body and my chemistry. Very interesting test and very easy to do (a cheek swab). I recommend it if it is available in your area.

What I will call “my second anti-depressant” didn’t rank as high and I also felt like it wasn’t doing the job and this is why she took me off of it. She then added the anti-psychotic medication. We started at the lowest dose to see how it would affect me.

I gave it a few weeks as I needed to let the anti-depressant work its way out of my system and also give the new medication time to work. Overall, I felt better. I thought I felt better. I wasn’t laying in bed. In fact, the thought of laying in bed was a turn-off for me. I really didn’t and don’t want to do that old habit anymore. This has been a huge step. One I didn’t feel with the other medication. I feel like this is a huge step for me.

I did have some lingering feelings of frustration and restlessness. This new medication can have some of those jumpy crawl-out-of-your-skin side effects and I wasn’t sure if the feelings were the new medication or it was my depression and anxiety being up to their old tricks.

So I gave it some time.

It seemed to wear off some, but never has it fully gone away.

The one thing I did notice is how I talked to myself. Sometimes I was really nice to myself and that feels great. I have been able to do some hobby type of stuff and I have actually felt enjoyment doing those things again. Another huge plus!

I did notice, however, that when I got frustrated I would really lay into myself. I would tear myself down in a matter of seconds. The talk at that point was really bad and really hurtful and left me more and more frustrated with myself. And then I would start to feel bad.

But I still didn’t want to go lay in bed. I really want to feed this feeling and I feel the new medication has brought on this change and this is an extremely desirable change for me.

The bad thoughts though…not so good. I cannot let them consume me the way they are.

A few of weeks ago, I asked if I could up the dosage to see what would happen. I wanted to fuel the good and hopefully tamp down the bad thoughts I was having towards myself.

So far, the good is there and continues to grow. I don’t lay in bed. I get up early everyday and I go to bed at a good time, mostly. This is good.

I will say that the shitty thoughts about myself are still there and the frustration with myself rages on. This has got to stop because I am extremely hard on myself. Especially about my weight gain I have had over the past year and a half. This is not a great combination.

So it makes me wonder, do I try something else? Do I raise the dosage. Do I wait a little longer for the new dose to continue adjusting?

I will say that this all really frustrates me. I am ready to find exactly what works for me and be done with this medication change thing which sucks each and every time I have to get used to a new medication.

I’m not going to lie. I have thought about giving up. I get so damn frustrated with all of this that sometimes I don’t want to try anymore.

But I have to…right? Yes, I do.

Thankfully, I have an appointment with my psychiatric nurse practitioner next week. Hopefully, together, we can keep going and hopefully we can get to my goal of finding exactly what I need sooner than later (be patient Jason…be patient).

I have to stay the course. I have to. I want to be here, and while I am here, I want to enjoy this one chance at life I do get. I will continue to try and persevere through all of this. It is tough sometimes and I want to give up sometimes, but I can’t and I won’t. The saga continues!

Stay the course. What is next will always be revealed somehow and someway. I am ready to see what is next for me!

You got this. I got this. We got this. Let’s keep walking this journey together.

Have a great day!

Jason

Come and check out rockingmentalhealth.com. This is a nonprofit website I founded where you will find stories and experiences told through various forms of creative expression. Come and see what we have!

Published by Jason Kehl

Nurse, artist, musician. One I have done professionally and two that I have not😉. I enjoy creating art and music as a hobby. I do it mostly because it helps me to feel better or express something that I feel inside. I am a believer in Mental Health Awareness. My goal is to throw myself out there in hopes that someone sees it and can gain the strength to seek help or keep working on themselves. We are an unfinished product! That's OK!

One thought on “Where To Go Next

  1. First of thank you for sharing! And yes it needs to be normal to beable to take a mental health day and not being okay. About the pandamic, as a student full time I noticed within myself that my mental health was worse and also everyone around me. We all took a big blow.

    I wish you good luck with your medication and everything.

    Like

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