“Michael, you’ve come a long way,” my mental health doctor told me last week. I smiled and acknowledged that this was true. “Last year [13 months ago], you were in deep Depression.”
She noted that, true, my Anxiety is still an issue. But It, too, is at a much, much better level than when I first sought help — to say nothing of the months I waited to seek help, hoping the pain of a brick brain, of frayed nerves and a clenched throat, and of immobilizing panic would magically go away.
I don’t suffer from brick-brain anymore — knock on wood. Nor do I get immobilized by some stressors — although that is a fairly recent accomplishment. Over the months of treatment from a doctor and a therapist, my Anxiety has become much more manageable. But in managing It … well … that still means I experience It. These days I just know how work my way out of the panic — nearly all the time.
But I’m still taking a drug I’d really rather be rid of. It’s not medication I’m concerned about; it’s a particular medication. I’d much rather amp up the dosage of a med that does not have side effects and doesn’t carry the risk of dependency. And over the past couple months my med doctor has been toying with my drugs to achieve this result. But we’re not quite there yet. I’m using both medications when life gets rough too often (I think).
And as someone who experiences some form of Anxiety daily — I’ll just admit it — life is rough.
This is no reason for hyper concern. I’m committed to making it through the rough patches. I see a light at the end of the tunnel. The tunnel isn’t even especially long anymore.
I would just hope that the Michael I want to achieve is possible.