January 29th is Bell’s Let’s Talk - mental health awareness day. The CVMA hosted a webinar, but I was at work during that time. So? Let’s talk now! I was not aware that I was depressed. Not until my husband mentioned, after receiving some criticism from me, that it would be nice if I could smile for once [when nagging or criticizing]. The problem was, I was too empty at the time to have any happy emotions. I knew through vet school and living in the cold prairie provinces, that I did not do well during winter, when I never see the light of day. My husband mentioned that if I needed help, that I was doing everyone a disservice by not getting help. I started Zoloft about five weeks ago now. The first few days, there was a very subtle, yet noticeable difference in the fogginess of my thinking, in a good way. By week three to four, I was back to being low, having extreme fatigue. My doctor had instructed me that after four weeks, I should increase the dose, and that fatigue lifted again. So far I have not had any side effects to the medication. In general, my sleeping pattern wasn’t great, but that’s still the same. Usually on my ‘Sunday’ I don’t sleep well, stressed about the up-coming week. But the stress during the workday is all manageable. What also seems to be affected are my PMS symptoms. Typically, I’m highly irritable and have a low tolerance for stupidity, but also a low tolerance for disorder around the house. My husband would feel personally offended and have no idea where this was coming from. Generally, I was so exhausted from having to clean up after people, work and home, that it would be nice if I didn’t have to nag someone to do basic things. Now, I feel I am less irritable during my PMS, an effect that I think is positive.
So, that’s my experience so far with dealing with my seasonal depression. As mentioned, due to an injury I haven’t been able to be as physically active, which I think affects me negatively. I know when I get back to training, that’ll help my mood. Everyone has a different way to handle the stresses in life. No one is perfect, which is why we need to talk.