Category: Withdrawal

It’s been a good few days – busy but good. Lots of Christmas shopping done – pretty much ALL done in fact, mood is good, nausea and dizziness so infrequent that i’ve not noticed it considerably in the past few days. In fact i’m feeling great. Wonderful! I’m OFF the drugs and time to manage myself on my own again! Thing is this time, I feel better equipped to cope, to manage, to carry on. I also know that if I NEED to go back on the tablets at any point I can and will. That in itself is a reassurance, knowledge I have a way out of the low that works. If things ever get that bad again, there is hope. Good hope.

So today I’m relaxing completely. I’m not doing ANYTHING. This I feel really good about. See thing is I find it difficult not to do anything, I always feel like I SHOULD be doing something. And then feel guilty about not doing anything. But, I suppose if you don’t have days where you relax completely, how can you ever recharge your batteries? I do try to have ‘me’ time and embrace the small things, but rarely does it happen for an entire day.

As a result i’ll keep this post short. I have some rubbish tv to catch up on, which I’m actually looking forward to switching off and letting it just flow over me.

It’s been another rollercoaster ride the last two days – emotions up and down, mainly down, dizziness so bad that i’ve almost thrown up more than once, and headaches. Oh headaches. Waking up in the morning to feel like the worst hangover ever type of headache. And there’s been no alcoholic involvement, and curiously, bad dehydration. Maybe that’s why it feels like a hangover – because of the dehydration. I don’t seem to be able to drink quick enough to remain hydrated! I’ve resorted to high sugar drinks like Coke now in the hope that my sugar and salt intake remains high enough – I certianly feel better since doing this. Perhaps these drugs were affecting me a LOT worse than I thought, I knew I was a lot thirstier on them than before, but now? I have dry eyes, my skin is incredibly dry – very unusual for me, and a mouth like the Sahara desert. Forget ‘dry mouth’ this feels like someone has emptied a bucket of sand into it. Also related or not, I have what feels like a cold. I’m just chalking that up to withdrawals as well

Needless to say I could also sleep for England, and my concentration is shot, BUT today I don’t feel emotionally bad at all. So that’s a big plus, and well, there’s late night Christmas shopping tonight. That’s never a bad thing.

I have a few more topics swirling around my head since the worst of the low moods have started to disappear, so I may pen a few more thoughtful posts over the next few days… Depends whether I can get a level standpoint on how i’m thinking. As well as the low moods, I’ve also been quite irrationally irate, unusual for me, only usually something that comes out when frustrated…

All in all things could be so much worse… I still thank my lucky stars for who I am, whatever trials and tribulations are thrown my way.

Definitely the worst day to date. Headache, nausea, dizziness so severe that I can’t even walk straight, no appetite, shakes, concentration impossible, low mood, unreasonable – the list is endless. Suffice to say I’d like to just curl up and sleep. Oh yes – extreme lethargy added to that list above. I know it’ll all end at some point though – I keep reminding myself of that.

But for tonight, I shall be sleeping. And trying to eat. It’s all a relatively small price to pay for the months of well-being i’ve received mentally, even if not physically… Which of course the delightful withdrawals are kicking me nice and hard physically, even now. Perhaps this physical affect is what has caused the extreme lethargy and exhaustion i’ve had of late? It would be interesting to be able to know for definite. Still have acidic stomach, but that is easing as are all of the other side effects noted whilst I was fully on the drug.

Not as happy a picture as I was hoping to present for the withdrawal symptoms, but, there’s no turning back now. Everything should settle in time…

Having had a long weekend away from home, I feel rather refreshed this morning – and very tired! Still not taking any medication, and I’m very surprised by the lack of withdrawal symptoms i’m experiencing. The biggest symptoms I can make out are extreme tiredness, which I had before when I was medicated anyway, and the head swims/balance issue. The tiredness is irritating because it affects my concentration, and well, on long car journeys where i’m the passenger (I try to avoid long car journeys where I drive for this very reason…) I instantly fall to sleep. I must be great company.

The head swims and balance is most annoying though. As it’s pretty much the same as when I came of Citalopram I knew what to expect and it doesn’t worry me when it happens, but it is just that little bit worse than my Citalopram experience. I can literally stand up and then stumble immediately as my head struggles to find where my blaance is. Even sitting down and not moving, if I flick my eyes quickly in one direction or another the spinning starts. I’ve been told it’s a bit like Vertigo. I’m just very pleased it isn’t.

Oh – and I forgot to mention the acid stomach too! I knew the tablets were affecting the acidity of my stomach somewhat, but coming off them has contributed to the acidity and I seem to be craving milk and dairy products which seem to be the only thing to calm the bubbling and acidity. As I mentioned before, the physical aspects of the medication were what has caused me to come off them perhaps a little earlier than I’d have liked, and these withdrawal symptoms are no worse than I was expecting – better in fact. Curiously the emotional side effects have calmed down again. I’m still cautious though, I bet they have just as good a chance of returning as staying away!

Anyway – I have the first rehearsal for a new choir I’m deputising for tonight, and I am looking forward to it so much. I love the music I’ll be singing and the choir is renowned for having quality singers, and the conductor is amazing too. So although the commute to the rehearsal is a little hefty, the experience is well worth it, and I just can’t wait. Only problem is, in a couple of weeks I have to re-arrange the volunteering induction as it falls on a Monday night! Thankfully the volunteering organisation said this was ok to do, I just feel a bit guilty for having to move the induction again. I’ll get volunteering eventually though!

Time to do some ‘day job’, innumerbale e-mails await.

For the last two days i’ve been continuing the dose reduction and well, there’s some strange things starting to happen. Firstly let’s talk physical symptoms. Thankfully no headaches like many have stated before, but, I seem to be swinging from extreme hunger to extreme nausea throughout the day. Sometimes in conjunction with having eaten, other times not. Sometimes when I eat, I just can’t seem to eat enough, just craving savoury things too – which is very unlike me, if I crave anything it’s usually chocolate or sugar based in some way…

No electric shock sensations, not that I expected them as I didn’t get them with Citalopram, however the head swims have intensified considerably to the point that my balance is rather strange. I can seem perfectly fine one minute and the next everything is off and spinning. Also, I seem to be having moments of feeling ‘spaced out’ where I almost seem like i’m viewing things from afar. Very strange. Almost like a complete detachment.

Emotionally, and yes – I knew this was coming… emotionally they have been all over the place. Lows, frustration, irritation, anger, tears – just the lovely gamut of the horrible that the tablets helped to eliminate in the first place. In fact i’ve just read back some of my previous posts, and well, it seems maybe the low started a little earlier than I recognised. But coming off the tablets I knew this would happen, so – it’s not as bad as it could be. Just goes to show, keeping a record of my moods, whether recognised or not is a good way of maintaining my sanity. I’m just holding onto the theory that how i’m feeling now will pass when my body stabilises without the meds again. I’m actually feeling quite chipper today though, so that thought does seem to be viable at this present time.

Contemplating a couple of days away at my parents this weekend so that will be nice to run away from the daily grind – so – I’ve decided that as my dose must be down to around 10mg now that it’s time to stop them entirely. Take the plunge and just go for it. I don’t seem to be having the hugely extreme withdrawal effects that some have noted (must say I find this curious considering the effects I had to get on them and whilst I was on them…) so it’s time to purge back to my normal self again. Whilst I shall mainly be chauffered around this weekend the balance issues won’t be a problem as I won’t be driving (much… if at all) and of course just relaxing will take the pressure off my brain to focus.

No doubt the highly strange weird dreams will continue – I won’t even go into the time loop/alternate reality dream I was having last night, that’ll teach me to watch Fringe before bedtime… But then, having a rather heightened creativity might not be a bad thing – even if it is when i’m not in a waking state. Perhaps I should write down the dream fragments I remember? You never know, I might come up with another story for another book!

Continuing to reduce my dosage is improving my physical issues – however the nausea is still quite bad and I seem to be craving sweet things. Strange really, but had a real craving for rhubarb and custard boiled sweets. Oh and potato. I like potato anyway but craving it is a bit weird for me.

And today I’m shattered, tired beyond belief. My eyes keep drooping, and it’s a real effort to speak to anyone. I can manage a few animated minutes, then have to break for a rest and hope no-one’s looking and then pull on my ‘Mask’ again. Exhausting. I’m hoping it’s just a side effect of the withdrawals… But then again, I didn’t sleep very well at all last night, and when I did it was the same old surreal nightmares. Situations I don’t recognise with people I do, or places I do recognise with people I don’t. Even dreamt I was going to be a Catholic Priest in 1600 England. My brain is plain weird.

Feeling a bit melancholy, which is just annoying. I hate feeling melancholy (yes yes I know, who DOES? But some people enjoy to wallow – I do NOT.) feel like I could just cry and cry. Then again, maybe that’s what I need? Sometimes a good cry does the world of good, gets rid of that excess penned up emotion. That’s sorted then, shower and cry when I get home! HAH what a strange thing to look forward to? Well, I’m actually looking forward to the ‘release’ of emotion. To relax, to drop the mask.

Overall though, i’m getting there, another week or so and I think I should be able to finish the tabs entirely. I have no head swims, no paresthesia, the dry mouth is improving, and my skin is feeling much better too. Thanks Duloxetine, you’ve helped my mind no end, but, my body sees things differently, so it’s nearly time to consign you to the depths of the toilet flush…

Interesting day yesterday – totally crashed out on the sofa and slept and slept and slept. Got motivated mid afternoon to revise my Singing CV – I considered it was probably time to get myself out there singing wise and strive for those things that make me truly happy. Then off to bed early again. Strange, but I’ve seemed to be completely wiped out this weekend – perhaps an effect of the ramp down in dosage, but today I feel like a new woman.

So much so, that i’ve started to reduce my dosage again. I’m on the wind down, so I have to keep it going, lord only knows my body is screaming out to be off them now, it’s just my brain that’s got to keep up with the pace! And I feel good enough to try the next step now. Should be a busy day at work today so that should keep my mind running through productive thoughts, and it’s a short day, finish here at 1600pm (I LOVE flexi time…) so if I do get tired mid-afternoon, then it’s only a little further until I can get home and sleep it off. I see the end in sight now, just have to keep pushing mentally and physically to reach my drug free goal!

As for the fish oil capsules, not really sure if they’re working or not, but then, I wasn’t expecting to be able to tell anyway. Still carrying on with 3 capsules a day, it was probably time I needed to add more Omega-3 into my diet, I am a vegetarian after all. Oh – and it’s only a 4 day week for me this week, booked Friday off so my OH, his parents and I can go and visit my parents for the weekend. Should be a nice relaxing affair, we all get on well, and dare I say it there may be some shopping too… retail therapy exists, I can vouch for that!

It’s funny, I usually have some ‘issue’ to discuss on my blog, but the past few days have been so exhausting my mind doesn’t seem to have been able to focus on anything remotely important. Maybe that’s just as good for me as making a point. Not having anything poignant to say. But that’s no bad thing. Sometimes just letting the world rumble on by is as healing as jumping straight into the fray. Sometimes we all just need a rest.

Sleep is a wonderful thing – I know i’ve said it before but it truly is. Feeling much better today, a little nausea but nothing bad, and my mood is back up again. Maybe a little longer before I start reducing the dose again but things aren’t going too badly I think! Have contented myself with a lie in lots of house work and lots of cheesy TV. The little things, organisation, cleanliness – an ordered house is an ordered mind? Ugh I’m coming out with rubbish today, but it’s all good, chilled out and I’m feeling much more stable.

Started taking fish oil capsules today too, something i’d meant to do for a while, but hadn’t had the time to buy the right ones. One with a high EPA content are supposed to help with mood stabilisation apparently, but as it’s good for health anyway, so I’m not losing anything by trying it! Hopeful it will work though, it would be nice to have some help in controlling my moods in a ‘natural’ sense rather than a medicated sense.

So now on to the rest of the afternoon’s tasks – making a Cottage Pie. Haven’t had time to cook anything decent for a while, so i’m quite looking forward to cooking guilt free knowing no more chores and a relaxing evening ahead.

Having a tough time today, my sleep was rather broken, and I just feel exhausted. I’m maintaining my dose at 20mg and physically the side effects have reduced significantly. Emotionally though that’s a different matter. I was expecting this though, so it’s not all bad. I just have to set in motion the good thoughts and preparations i’ve had in place for this very moment.

I’ve read through previous posts of mine, and they are helping. Lethargy and exhaustion aren’t though, so I’ve booked a day off work next week and hoping to get another day off the week afterwards to try and cushion the tiredness and allow some me time to help focus my mind. It’s funny, you’d never think work was quite so mentally exhausting, but putting on a show, keeping a happy face, trying to control your thoughts so you can do some quality work… not so easy. So recognising the signs from before, time to slow down a little and do the things I enjoy. Otherwise i’ll be no good to man nor beast.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was a drug that would work for me without severe side effects? But we’re all different, it’s just how it goes sometimes!!! At least I did find one that worked for me!

Feeling a little better this morning – slept deeply again, however a repeat of the rather vivid nightmares of a few nights ago… Not the same nightmares, but different ones, strange, twisting dreams, I awoke crying at one point… I’m wondering if it’s just a way of my mind releasing emotions as the medications start to wear off. Who knows? I’m cautiously checking at the moment to see what surprising emotions I have in store today, at the moment, I feel ‘normal’ (well normal for me anyway!), time to stop worrying and be productive! I’ve maintained my dose the same as yesterday, and will maintain it for a few more days before taking the next step downwards.

Had a rather surprising call yesterday, after lamenting the loss of concerts until the new year, i’ve been asked to Deputise at a choir i’ve been dying to sing with for a very long time. So I now have a pre-Christmas concert to look forward to and it’s some wonderful music. Maybe that’s why my spirits are a little higher than yesterday? Again, can’t say, but i’m not knocking it. It’s the little things, the little distractions, making life what you want it to be. Yes, there’ll always be compromise, the ‘day job’, things to pay the mortgage, but, it’s so beneficial to do the things you love, divert yourself from bad thoughts, bad situations, and look to the good. In fact, after re-reading this, I’m feeling happier already – it is nice to be recognised and requested for something after all isn’t it?

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