About Me

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My husband and I, the Dynamic Duo, have been married since 2003. We've weathered the storm of chronic disease (diagnosis 2006), infertility (diagnosis 2007), turning 30 (2006/2007 respectively) a first adoption (2009) of a tender hearted, compassionate Ukrainian BIG boy (born 2006), who has told us he'd like a baby sister, baby brother, big brother, and REALLY big sister. We recently completed our second Ukrainian adoption journey, which brought us a daughter (born 2005). We'll see what else God brings our way!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Breaking the Silence

I've been silent for a while.  Sometimes on purpose, and sometimes not on purpose.  This winter was a really rough winter of recognition and acceptance of me by me.

It all started last fall.  I know these fabulous women who get together monthly to play BUNCO.  I'm a sub on the list, so I get called occasionally to hang out with them.  If you know me at all, you know that two of my favorite things are games and socializing.  I found myself agreeing to go to these events, but not really enjoying them.  It was almost this conscious thought that I should go because I remember enjoying this once upon a time.  I remember coming home from one of these events early (I had slipped out unnoticed) and telling my husband that I wasn't sure I would go again.  I just couldn't understand why I wasn't having fun.

Rewind to last May.  My doctor happened to mention kind of out of the blue that I seemed a little stressed.  "You have a lot on your plate."  She said that she would be glad to give me a little help if I ever felt like I needed it.  "No," I thought.  "Me?  Need help for stress?  This is just a normal thing Mom's go through, right?"

So, here it is in the fall and I'm not enjoying things I always had in the past.  I began to wonder why I'd wanted kids.  Why was it that other moms really enjoyed their kids, and I was struggling so much to tolerate mine?  In fact, Amelia was struggling in school and we had just started counseling.  She has a diagnosis of ADD and Insecure Attachment (a form of RAD where she's indiscriminately affectionate to everyone.)  And then I noticed that I was having a hard time breathing.  I no longer slept through the night.

Stress.  Medicine.  Help.

After encouragement from my mom I called my doctor and got a prescription for Xanax.  I took it only when I needed it, and only a tiny dose (I cut the pill in half!).  But it was giving me crazy side affects like slurred speech and memory loss.  So I called the doctor, told her what was going on, and took her advice to get on a mild antidepressant.  After a week or so I noticed a huge difference in my attitude and demeanor.

As I look back, feeling once again "normal", I see how my attitude, patience, and enjoyment of others (including my kids) has improved.  I love hanging out with my kids, I sleep like a dad (haha!) and I've started enjoying my BUNCO gals again.

I'm so thankful for friends who talked me through this.  I remember telling one of my bosses (who had shared that she struggled with depression and took meds) that I had been prescribed Xanax.  I told her that I wasn't sure if this affected my employment at all.  She assured me that my employment wasn't in jeopardy and gently talked me through the struggles I was going through (the benefits of working for an amazing church).  Our bodies aren't meant to withstand the stress of living in a sin filled world.

This winter was a rough winter of acceptance.  I don't have an official diagnosis of depression, but I think I might be heading in that direction.  This doesn't make sense; much of my life doesn't make sense.  I'm always smiling, cheerful, and upbeat...or so people (and I) thought.  Deep down, I realize, I was hurting.

To Be Continued...


The McGowans said...

N - You are so strong for working through it all and not giving in. I hope you know how many people have been praying for you in your silence, including me. Always wish God could work quicker, but his timing, too, is perfect. Your two kids are just what God had planned for your family, trials and disappointments and joys and all, wrapped up together. So proud of you and your community for noticing something was wrong and for working on it.
Abundant blessings,

Anonymous said...

Hi Natalie, Just getting caught up on some of your blogging ... and came across this post. Thank you for sharing ~ and trusting us all with a deeper part of your heart. I'd love to hear the "continued" part and see how you are doing now.
love and hugs, Holly; Kyiv