Sunday, November 7, 2010

Blërg is Swedish for "Oh Shit!"

Depression is commonly treated with antidepressant medications. Antidepressants work to balance some of the natural chemicals in our brains. These chemicals are called neurotransmitters, and they affect our mood and emotional responses. Antidepressants work on neurotransmitters such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.

The most popular types of antidepressants are called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). These include:
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac)
  • Citalopram (Celexa)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Escitalopram (Lexapro).
Other types of antidepressants are serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). SNRIs are similar to SSRIs and include venlafaxine (Effexor) and duloxetine (Cymbalta). Another antidepressant that is commonly used is bupropion (Wellbutrin). Bupropion, which works on the neurotransmitter dopamine, is unique in that it does not fit into any specific drug type.*

I almost forgot to write today.  I've been busy trying to fill out all the stupid paperwork I have to fill out for this lawsuit in which I'm a plaintiff.  It's similar to a class-action suit against the makers of the birth control brands Yasmin, Yaz and Ocella.  One of the possible side effects of oral birth control, especially if you're a smoker, is blood clots.  A blood clot is a very serious health problem, it can result in a heart attack, stroke or pulmonary embolism, all of which have very high mortality rates.  I had ankle surgery back in 2006 to fix the ligaments in my left ankle.  After chronically spraining that ankle (and the other, which I had worked on in 2001), the ligaments had stopped being elastic as they are supposed to be and were just stretched out and pretty much useless.  Anyway, I had the ankle surgery, and was in a plexiglass cast when one day I had pain in my calf that was similar to a cramp.  I called my orthopedic surgeon and he told me to go to the ER immediately, where I was given an ultrasound and was diagnosed with a blood clot called a Deep Vein Thrombosis.  

The treatment for blood clots like these is to be put on blood thinning medications for around 6 months at a time.  For the first 10 days I had to be on injections (which I had to administer myself), and then for the next 3 months I was on Coumadin, a form of blood thinner.  I had to go get blood tests done once a week for that three months to make sure that the blood thinners were working correctly.  However, I experienced a few different complications, one of which included my being admitted to the hospital because my INR (the measurements of how the coagulants in my blood were reacting) was so high.  I was told that if I had gotten in a car accident or gotten a head injury, the chances were good that I would have bled out.

Anyway, I saw a commercial earlier this year about how patients that had been prescribed those brands of birth control had been experiencing blood clots and other medical complications to the point of death, even, and that attorneys across the country were putting together a lawsuit to sue the makers (Bayer) because of the abnormally high numbers of women experiencing life-threatening complications as a result of using Yasmin, Yaz or Ocella.  I had been prescribed both Yasmin and Yaz and from what I remember (it is still a little hazy), I was taking Yaz at the time I had the blood clot, so I contacted the attorneys and had myself added to the list of plaintiffs seeking damages.  So I had to fill out a Plaintiff Fact Sheet with information  regarding the complications of my blood clot as well as everything else from the last 10 years of my life.  Needless to say, it took awhile.  That's a lot of information, especially for someone with as many health problems as I've had in my life!

Today, I took it really easy.  I spent most of the day asleep.  I think I must have used up all of the energy my body had reserved for today yesterday.  Also, if you're wondering, I did cave and responded to my ex-boyfriend's text.  We talked for awhile last night while he was working and I was reading, but didn't really talk about anything too serious.  I explained to him my current situation and gave him the link for this blog.  I guess I just wanted to know why, after ten months of not speaking, he tried to communicate with me.  He told me that he missed my smile and got out the pictures, and so he wanted to share that with me.  The inner workings of his mind have always been a mystery to me.  I very rarely understood the things that he would do or say, and it didn't matter how many times I'd ask him to explain things to me, I more often than not was still very confused.  

I've spoken to some friends about my shock and my response, and I'm greeted with all the same worry I've been greeted with before when I've gotten back in contact with him after a long silence.  There is most certainly a pattern of me getting "sucked back in" with him and having the same exact reactions as before.  For some reason, I tend to selectively "forget" the horrible things that he's put me through or forgiven the hurt he's caused me over time.  I don't think that those are options anymore.  I have to put myself first, and I am going to have to work very hard to prevent myself from letting him back in.  Ironically, he has apologized countless times for the hurt he's caused me, and yet he just continues to do it. 

I'm torn because I know that people who truly love one another go through a lot in terms of the ups and downs of their relationship, and I have no real gauge for how high or low is too high or too low.  I have a hard time understanding when to say enough, and when to chalk things up as just part of loving someone.  However, I should try to take the advice I give others, which is that if the guy doesn't treat you like you're the best thing that has ever happened to him, and he doesn't take you for granted, then he's not worth your time.

I'm really nervous about work this week.  I don't know what I can possibly do to prove myself to my boss that I haven't already done.  I have an interview with an ambulance company on Wednesday morning, and I'm nervous for that as well.  I've been told that this particular company is very strict about the guidelines they use to insure their ambulance drivers, and my driving record is not exactly clean, although I've never been in an accident.  All I can do is go, rock the written and practical exams, and hope for the best.  I'd love to be able to work in a non-admin job because I think that I get bored because I'm always assisting.  I explained to my boss that she lives her job, as do a lot of people, but because real estate is not my passion, I don't live my job, nor can I because of the limitations I have on my work schedule.   I would really like a job that is MINE, that I can live for and always try to improve upon.  I'd absolutely love to be able to go to medical school someday, so that I can be challenged and use the intelligence that I have to help people.  Working as an EMT would be a great step in that direction, and all I really want is to be going in any direction at all instead of just being complacent.

Blah.  I think I'm just going to go get into bed and relax.  I need to be working on controlling my stress levels and now would be a great time to practice that.

*"NIMH · What Medications Are Used to Treat Depression?" NIMH · Home. Web. 07 Nov. 2010. <>.

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