Thursday, November 29, 2007

These Dreams

It's the end of the world. There are not many of us that haven't been taken by the disease, the one that has mutilated the entire human race into leagues of rotting zombies that bear telltale holes in their hands and feet. We are the walking dead, bearing the stigmata but with no hope for salvation. A leader has sprung up among the damned. You know him by the figure of the Virgin Mary he keeps with him, the closed eyes, the hands closed in prayer, the sword he has rammed through her side and uses to drag her through the streets when he leads the pack onward to nowhere.

These are the kinds of dreams I have on a NORMAL night.

One of the side effects of zoloft is "vivid nightmares." This I took almost as a challenge as I've endured epic sagas and violent massacres and terrifying movie-worthy plots since I was a child. I'm used to it. However. At 3 AM, just after she nursed, Harlow started screaming. Her hands clutched to her head, she screamed and screamed, clearly in the throes of a terrible nightmare. My whole body was flooded with adrenaline but I just sat there, kissing her, trying to soothe her until she finally nursed and fell back asleep. It was a long time before I did. Was it the medicine doing this to her? Was it a coincidence? It's impossible to know but I'm incredibly nervous about continuing onward with the meds.

Speaking of, there's no shortage of spooky in taking this stuff*. Besides being a Nancy Reagan kid, there's a reason I didn't take drugs like everybody else in college. It's monkeying around with your brain. Now even though its legal, it's no less unnerving. It's like someone hung a Please Pardon Our Dust sign on my frontal lobe. There's something clearly going on up there but I'm just having to wait until the grand unveiling to learn exactly what.

* Although the stats claim that millions of Americans take some kind of anti-depressant or SSRI, I've been hardpressed to find folks who openly talk about it. I think maybe as depression is still viewed as an imaginary affliction, perhaps that's why it's seen as taboo to discuss the treatments. So see me as a guinea pig for any of you considering trying it out.


Stacey Greenberg said...

do you ever read marrit ingman?
(i think her book is in the mville library)

she's all about talking about the crazy.

in terms of the zoloft, i can only speak from a "my friend on so and so forum took it and she said..." perspective, but i think there may be a bit of tweaking the dosage necessary from time to time. or maybe a few weeks of just letting your body get used to it? building up a tolerance as they say.

not sure about the breastmilk connection though...

Kristy said...

Hopefully once your system adjusts to the meds, it will all be better. I feel fortunate that I've never needed to take anything, but many, many people close to me, including one of my oldest and best friends and much of my family have and do. If the Zoloft doesn't work out, my two most anxiety-plus-depression-prone peeps rave about Cymbalta. I'm not sure how it is with breastfeeding, but it's not an SSRI so it works differently.

Anonymous said...

(Hugs) and prayers that your bod including the boobs and brain get back in rhythm soon...


Stephanie said...

I only have the "my close friend" connection, but her quality of life is so improved since starting the Zoloft! It's been a few years, and she had two kids while on it, and everyone seems fine. I hope you find the right dosage so it can work the same miracles for you.

Beverly said...

you can always call the lactation specialist at local hospitals, they know which meds are approved for breastfeeding. Many new moms take the meds for anxiety/depression and are breastfeeding.
I hope you find peace soon. It takes at least two weeks for them to get to a therapeutic level.

Melissa said...

Maybe its the meds...maybe its the warm fuzziness from all this support, but I'm feeing so much better already.