“The greatness of the man’s power is the measure of his surrender.” William Booth
I’m the first one to say that I do NOT have an answer. I would just like to share with you my personal journey through denial, acceptance and surrender.
I was first prescribed medication on my early 20’s. I still remember the little blue and yellow capsules. They were a sign that I was weak, or so I thought. Those were the days of Prozac. I didn’t want to be “Prozac Girl”. I only took one pill, then I flushed the whole lot of them down the toilet. Why? I just couldn’t do it. I didn’t like the psychiatrist I was seeing and thought he just wanted to drug me…to numb me. I stopped seeing him, obviously stopped the medication and contined on with life. I continued to fight.
After the birth of my second child, another doctor prescribed meds. No way was I going to take medication while nursing my babe! Once again, I went on with life.
When I was pregnant with my third child, things began to get worse. I was scared. My husband was scared. I couldn’t take care of my two year old and four year old. Embarrassing to admit, but the thought even crossed my mind to abort my pregnancy! (Thank God I didn’t! Jenna is a true gift in my life!!). So you guessed it…I was prescribed drugs yet again. This time, I surrendered. Even my husband said “If you can’t do it for you, do it for your family”. So I did. Did I get “better”? Yep. I was able to function effectively in life again. Yet, one important thing I neglected to do was seek counseling and truly heal myself. I felt better, so why bother? I stayed on the meds for over a year, felt great and weaned myself off. During that time, I told almost no one. (Read more about that here: https://lindagoodall.wordpress.com/2013/02/23/depression-and-pregnancy-my-story/ ) I continued on with life.
When the big crash happened, it was bad. I went back to my doctor, head down, crying. She started to tell me about the benefits of meds. I stopped her and said I knew I needed them. It had become a matter of life and death. However, the first night I tried to take that little white pill, was a gut wrenching horrible experience. The feelings of failure were overwhelming. I ended up on the phone with my sister for over an hour, trying to get my body to physically swallow the darned thing. Through tears of sadness, anger and frustration I finally accepted I needed help beyond myself and I surrendered, yet again. Unfortunately, I had to go through a few prescriptions to find the right one, but eventually a suitable one was discovered. This time was going to be different! Even when I started to feel better, I didn’t stop taking them. I continued with counselling, realizing that I had a lot to work on.
Is medication for everyone?
That is not for me to answer. I won’t judge whether you chose to use prescription meds or not. I did and it continues to help me. It’s a very sad statistic that I read once that one in four women use prescription drugs. Truthfully, I wish I wasn’t part of that statistic. I did my research and came to the conclusion that it was for me. Some people say that you should be able to let God heal you or describe being medicated as “numbing out”. The way I see it, God created people with the talent and abilities to develop medication to help me. God did save me and I couldn’t have done any of it without Him. I don’t plan on being medicated for my whole life. In the last 3 1/2 years, I’ve tried to go off a couple times. Each time I started to fall again and I don’t ever want to go back to that deep pit. I know I will probably try going off again. Yet, I’ve also become comfortable, (sort of) that I may always need it. I have a chemical imbalance in my brain, which causes me to suffer clinical depression. I want to live my life, help others, be a great mom and wife and if that little white pill helps me, then I’ll take it.
Please don’t get me wrong, I still see my counsellor when necessary, exercise to reduce stress, eat well to be healthy, pray to God, use herbal teas and homeopathics when needed. Medication is just one aspect of dealing with my depression.
What’s your experience with medication?
Psalms 147:3 NLT
He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.