Part 1 – Diagnosed with Depression

How I recovered from depression a debilitating, life destroying, life controlling issue.

I was “diagnosed” by a medical-center doctor (walk-in clinic) who had no history on me for depression or anything else for that matter back in 1994. As I look back, I know now that depression is widely misdiagnosed. Life got you down? Oh, you must be depressed, let’s load you up on mood-altering drugs. Instead of finding the cause of the unhappiness, sadness, hopeless, despair of life; let’s give you medication. I had a severe drug problem for 28 years! Of course, I am going to be unhappy, sad, and have Dis-Ease of life! OH now I have a crutch, thank you very much. I was good at the blame game and here is one more thing I can add to my back pocket of shame.  I am such a loser drug addict; crappy mom, bad sister and daughter, unemployable adnauseam and now I have a mental illness! Great! When I was getting dealt the hand of life, I defiantly got the losing hand, or so I thought!

Over the years I continued to abuse drugs and alcohol with the doctors trying to find that magic combination of pills that would help with stopping my suicide by installment plan. Funny how a doctor thinks “prescribed” drug will help with a street drug problem.  Nothing helped.  At the end of 2003, I entered my final treatment facility.  I had been off my medication for a few weeks because I could not afford to buy them.

The facility suggested that I wait and see if I really need them. My best friend turned on me, my lover of 28 years cheated on me, lied to me, shamed me and made me feel like I couldn’t live with or without Mr. Cocaine. I was coming off a collage of drugs and of course, I would be depressed.

I lived in the treatment facility for women for 6 months and I stayed off of the medication. I think at that point in my life I was kept so busy with making changes and working on myself that I didn’t have time to think.

I had been clean for about a year and I started to feel sad, lonely, tired, bored…I thought ….maybe I was depressed. Back to the doctors, I went seeking something to take me out of myself. I didn’t want to feel.  Over the next 5 years, I stayed clean from street drugs but I ended up being on 3 different kinds of anti-depressants! Nothing was working! I still felt dis-eased in life.

What in the world did I have to be depressed about? After years of disappointing my family I had them back in my life, they finally trusted me again. I was a productive member of society working a full-time job for the last 5 years, I was scuba diving, and I was no longer destroying my life and everyone that was close to me.  Why would I be depressed?

Oh here comes the lie…. wait for it, wait for it… the doctors told me that with the years of drug use to cocaine and my favorite drug “what do ya got?” and the amount that I had been doing, has forever altered my brain chemistry and I would always have to take medication. The brain does not reproduce, the serotonin and dopamine that my body over produced when I was using. cocaine works the neurotransmitters of the brain. It makes the brain release the euphoria chemicals in large quantities to give you that rush of pleasure.

Great I was screwed! I finally had my answer. The doctors told me, so it must be true. Society is plagued with mental illness and now I was just one of the statistics!

I became my own doctor, playing with the doses to try to find just the right one. Really no different than being a drug addict; finding that perfect combination of drugs and alcohol. Enough of one or the other to get me to that sweet spot of obviation – a little more and I would get paranoid or a little less and I would chase the dragon even harder.  It was the same for the prescribed medication. Too much of one and I wouldn’t sleep, not enough of the other one and I would sleep too much. I constantly felt like I had a mouth full of cotton.

I would try time and time again to get off the prescription drugs all together and I would end up in bed not caring if the place burned to the ground. Eventually, I believed the lie.

UP NEXT….. HOW I WAS CURED!!……..that’s right……you read right……CURED

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