I’m in the process of refocusing petalsuite to better reflect me, my life, and the things I have been going through. I started working at (name removed at request) back in September and through the immense pressure of the nature of Event Planning, plus the time I was required to dedicate to the position, combined with personal influences like my move to Canada, the fact I had been unemployed for nearly a year, not knowing anyone to help with my social life outside of work, and the oh-so-awful Canadian Winter, I spiralled into an uncontrollable and devastating depression.
I found a GP and began on Citalopram (brand name Celexa) in March, and I commit to hoping it would work for a solid month, even doubled my dosage in that time, with zero success. I felt tired, and a little queasy, but I couldn’t tell if it was the medication or my agitated depression (a lethal combo of anxiety AND depression) causing these feelings. My doctor switched me to Sertraline (brand name Zoloft), and again, I tried that for a week, doubled the dose for another week, and still wasn’t noticing a significant enough change to regain positivity about my future, my purpose, and my life. After another doctor’s appointment, I switched to Venlafaxine (brand name Effexor), which, as opposed to a SSRI, was an SNRI- both drugs affect the serotonin transporter but SNRIs also affect other serotonin receptors to relieve major depression. Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) are among the newer types of antidepressant. As the name implies, they block the reuptake of both serotonin and norepinephrine. I can only imagine this was a contributing factor in my depression because after doubling the Venlafaxine dose, I finally noticed some results. I had more energy, mild positivity about the day when waking up, less exhaustion from daunting tasks such as showering, and small things like my husband noticed I was smiling more.
My career change really came down to one day. I had been humming and haa-ing about leaving (name removed at request) for a few months but couldn’t decide if my depression was making me think that, or if I genuinely felt it wasn’t the career for me. I was having nightmares, involving throwing myself down the stairs at work or jumping off a bridge over the highway. I made plans- it would have to be early in the morning since late at night people are still going about their evening activities. The world is so silent at 3:00 or 4:00 AM. On Wednesday, March 10th, I went to work in the morning feeling fine, but half an hour into my day, I began feeling clammy, my heart was racing, I was sweating and panicky, and I felt sick to my stomach. After rushing to the washroom to vomit, and excusing myself to go home and rest, I realised I wasn’t sick at all. My body was physically reacting to the anxiety I was feeling- which stemmed from nothing in particular, but I knew for my health’s sake, this job was a catalyst to disaster. When my husband got home that day, he forced me out of bed and outside for a walk. By the time we’d walked around our neighbourhood and I knew what I needed to do. That night I wrote my letter of resignation, effective immediately, for health concerns. First thing Thursday morning I gave my letter to the owner and it didn’t go too well but I can’t blame her- it must have been blindsiding as I was somehow able to feign normal functionality at work, and very few people knew just how bad things were getting in my brain.
Depression is soul-sucking. There’s really no way to explain it to someone who has never experienced it, but I want to be open about my struggles in the hope that my story connects with someone else out there, and maybe even pulls someone off the cliff that I hung from not that long ago.