For the past 2 weeks I’ve decided not to post anything as in all honesty I’m not sure that what I would have shared would have been helpful to anyone, including me.
I’m writing this whilst signed off work for stress/depression or the sick note actually says ‘low mood’ but it’s far more than that. I also think each of these labels completely miss the mark of how I’m currently feeling. Forgive me if this post is a bit all over the place as it’s taken a lot for me to actually write this.
A couple of weeks ago my mental health took a massive dive bomb. I fully respect that everybody has a different experience of mental health so I’ll try to explain what my experience has been. I’ve had a lot of people offer their support and that’s brilliant. Thanks very much everyone, but I’m finding it really hard to talk about this right now. I’m finding it really hard to think straight, focus and make decisions so I will reach out when i can for the support I need.
I find life pretty stressful in general. I’m an anxious kinda guy as I am always striving to be better at everything. Not better than anyone else but better than myself.
I have 2 kids under five. I have been battling a crappy sleep cycle with my 1 year old for months. My daughter has a life threatening heart condition. For my work I organise support for 20 families who are struggling. I’m not very good at being social and so rarely make the effort with friends that I would like. I’m both physically and emotionally distant to my family and feel like a crap human being for being like that. I have very few outlets. I also on top of that have been running DadsApp for nearly a year, on my own. SO, life is pretty stressful.
I’ve been feeling physically low for a few weeks. That’s going to happen when you start a healthy diet and take up regular exercise which I did just a few weeks ago. I started by cutting down on sugar and sweet treats and began a daily workout, though nothing too strenuous. I also added a new Instagram page called Dadsapp Fitness which I quickly found to be taking up a lot of my time and my head space.
So I leave work early on a Friday afternoon feeling physically run down and needing rest. By the Monday morning it’s not just the physical. Nothing spectacular happened over the weekend. The kids weren’t particularly naughty or troublesome.
So I decided to take a day for me. I call in to work to say I won’t be able to make it in and break down in tears, out of nowhere. I come off the phone and can not believe how a quick conversation with my (very supportive) boss I find myself staring into myself and realising my heads what’s not right more than my body.
I feel nothing. Not sadness, not joy, not hunger, not cold. I just feel tired, alone, flat, emotionless. I fake my smiles where I feel I can and basically desire nothing. Making decisions take hours. I sat in front of a TV screen for 90 minutes deciding whether to watch a movie or not. Not what movie to watch. Whether or not to watch it. I only ate for the sake of it. I got no joy from food for ages.
So, I get an appointment with the GP and for the first time in my life am prescribed medication for my mental health. FLUOXETINE. One tablet a day.