The worst issues I have ever had with anti-depressants other than them not working have been insomnia when I start a new one. One of my very clear memories from the first time I took anything was when I started citalopram at 20mg and only slept an hour or two a night for a week. In that week I read a lot in bed and one night I read Michael MacIntyre’s book and had to muffle my cackles at 4am as everyone else slept. Other than that, nothing.
I have been really lucky that way.
Well that changed last week. My duloxetine dose was doubled and woooow. Also, I have seen a lot of articles floating around talking about how it is the worst but I am ignoring that cause hey I have it now and ‘I read this on twitter’ is not enough of a reason for my Dr to wean me off it again. Anyway. Wow. I now get what people mean when they say they feel like they are floating. It is weird and not fun. SO not fun. I felt like I was anchored to my mattress by …the bit of leg just above my ankle. And the curve just past my wrist. And that everything else was trying to drag me away. But I also felt like I was too small for the body I had. I felt I had to stretch myself and curl everything and try and fill things. I never could. All I did was strain muscles. The more muscles hurt the more I became convinced it was because I could not fill my body so I stretched more. I tossed and turned. I had hot and cold flushes that were far worse than any I have experienced with thyroidism. Honestly, it seemed more like a preview of menopause.
At one point I became convinced that one of my dogs had peed on my bed or that I had peed in the bed! I was convinced the sheets felt wet but after rambling at them for….who knows how long to be honest, I felt the sheets again and they were bone dry. Had it just been me sweating? Was it just my imagination? I have no idea.
I do know I would randomly start babbling at my dog at all hours of the day. Nico tends not to spend his day with me, preferring to sit on the stairs or on a chair in the living-room so he can watch the outside world and guard us from its evils. For those interesting days he stayed on my bed and if he did leave he often appeared at the top of the stairs and popped his head around the corner as if to check I was still alive. This matters a great deal more when you remember that Nico now struggles to get up and down the stairs. And as soon as I had heard him clamber up to check I’d hear him wander back down to see his grandparents. During the day he’d camp out basically on my head. It is almost as if he wanted to make sure I didn’t do anything too mental.
I would dream that I was made of lego and floating in ….space? A dark black space of some sort anyway if not Space space. Anyway I was floating and trying to make a lego globe of the world but I pressed too hard on to the top and it shattered so I shattered and we all died and then I spoke to my dogs about it cause….obviously?
What did not help is that I came down with some sort of illness at the same time because that is the sort of luck I roll with. Nose like a tap, banging sore head, cough like a chainsaw. That sort of thing. I coughed myself to the point of barely being able to walk because I had hurt all the muscles in my stomach and back. This added to my rolling about trying to ‘fill my limbs’ in an odd way. I would sleep for ridiculous amounts of time but could not determine if that was all from the medicine or from being sick. Things are on the up now but there is still a long way to go.
I need naps during the day. I sleep a lot at night. I don’t panic as much but I still feel rather spaced out and empty, waiting for the hours to pass so another day has gone. Pressure is starting to come in reminders that ‘they will be settling so…you have to start doing something’. There is no regard that this still not be the right dose. That I need energy to do things. That sometimes it takes more energy to stop a panic attack than to let one pass erupt from within. So I am still working on which way is up and which direction I am meant to go in. Easier does not mean it is not hard.