I don't even know where to begin. There is so much I would have blogged about over the past week, but my computer screen died on Tuesday evening, and I didn't have frequent enough Internet access to post on my blog. Thankfully, I got my laptop fixed today, and we're up and running again.
I met with my psychiatrist last Wednesday. I maybe naively assumed that he would have no issue with lowering my meds again this month, since he's had no issue about lowering them over the past year. When I asked to drop my Prozac from 40mg to 20mg last week, at first he gave me an 'absolute' no! He said with my history, it wasn't a matter of if I have another major depressive episode, it was a matter of when. Even though all of my severe depression episodes have been linked to specific abuse events or to parts struggling with memories, he still said I would have another major depressive episode, and he thought lowering the Prozac anymore was a bad idea. We talked about it, and agreed to lower my Prozac to 30mg for a couple of months and see how I handle that.
The hardest thing about this encounter is not the fact that I may have to go back up to 40mg of Prozac. I will take whatever level of meds I need to feel well. I just don't want to take more than I have to take. Since I've been on some type and level of an anti-depressant for over 10 years, how am I supposed to know how much I need to be okay without testing the waters a bit? I know my pdoc has my best interest at heart, and I really am okay with our plan. What knocked my feet out from under me was the fact that my progress and coping ability felt as though they were being questioned.
For the past year, I have been blessed with a treatment team, family, and friends who have been supportive of anything I've wanted to do and felt capable of doing. Pdoc has seen me through a lot and I do trust his opinion. I do see him as an expert, so his words carried a lot of weight. I/we started questioning the trust we'd begun to develop in ourselves about our ability to know what we can/can't do and need or don't need. Also, it gave some parts the ammo they've been looking for to add weight to their view that the work we're doing is pointless and we'll never heal enough to make it worth all of this. Also, it gave ammunition to the thoughts that we will cycle through a really low point again. The last thing we want is to be majorly depressed and suicidal again! If pdoc is right, then we still can't trust our internal meeter about what we need and what is good for us.
Lately we've been feeling very confident in our ability to cope and make smart life choices. We're still talking to therapist at least twice a week, but it's more like she's been walking a step or two behind us in case we do fall, but we're living our life. After the conversation with psychiatrist, we became very uncertain of our footing, and needed reassurance from therapist, friends, and family for a few days before making any type of decision or doing much of anything.
Today was a better day. I was able to do things like normal and didn't feel the need to check in with anyone before every move I made. This gives me hope that things really are as I see them. We basically took a direct blow last Tuesday and a week later we've recovered enough to go on with life. I'm very happy yet surprised at how well our coping skills still seem to be working.
I really don't know whether it's good or naive to think we are healing enough to not have another major depressive episode and that we really can lower our meds even more. I guess only time will answer these questions.