This blog entry has been a long time coming. I have been depressed. I didn't really realize it until just recently when I talked to my doctor. It may come as a shock to a lot of people, as I hid it very well.
Looking back I think it has been at least since December since the depression started to affect me. I used to be a gym rat, but I haven't really been to the gym in a long time. Oh sure I can make excuses like I was tired or work, but I face the fact that it was depression.
My doctor asked me if my depression was so bad I couldn't get out of bed, I laughed to myself, thinking, well I wouldn't have a job if I couldn't get out of bed now would I? I still have my sense of humor.
I would do just enough to skate by at work too. You are probably thinking, uh you work at a radio station, you don't have the missile launch codes or anything like that how can you just skate by?
Well I would do just enough. On the outside to everyone else I looked happy and fine, in my head I was freaking out over everything, everything would make me upset. You name it, it would probably upset me.
Cancer is easy for me to understand. Cells reproduce into a tumor. Take out the tumor, no cancer. In the simplest of terms right?
Depression, as described by dictionary.com is:
sadness; gloom; dejection, a condition of general emotional dejection and withdrawal; sadness greater and more prolonged than that warranted by any objective reason
That explains it, that is how I felt. Its not something you can just "get over" Believe me I tried. I had hoped it was just some passing thing. That the chemicals in my brain would be jacked just enough to make me upset and sad.
I tried to read about it Serotonin-norepinephrine are the chemicals in the brain, but blah blah medical terminology, I got distracted.
People have said to me when I tell them I have been depressed, well its no wonder you have been through a lot. Yeah but I should be able to handle this shouldn't I? After all its been over a year since I have been done with treatment. I shouldn't be feeling this way. At least that is what I would tell myself, fighting my own sad or angry thoughts, trying to make them stop. I survived cancer, and the treatment and now some chemicals in my head aren't reacting properly.
I was taking one pill (effexor) once a day to deal with my depression (as I said before in other blogs, I have a hard time asking for help)
I met with my doc for a routine appointment and she was concerned about my mood. Even that pissed me off a little (that should have told me something I thought to myself what do I have to be a happy freaking monkey all the time?)
The final straw that made me realize I needed help was when I thought someone unfriended me on facebook. I started to cry. I was at work and doing a live airshift. I texted a mutual friend of mine and we chatted about it. Turns out our friend's facebook page was hacked and she had to turn it off.
The next day I called the doctor and asked if I could take effexor twice a day. It has made a world of difference.
The moral of my story: Don't be afraid to ask for help if you need to. Your doctor, your priest, a therapist, whomever. You are not in this fight alone. At times it may feel like it is just you against the world, but that is not the case.
Trust me, I know.
Mel is the producer/co~host of The Vic McCarty Show. Listen live Monday-Friday 10am-noon eastern on wmktthetalkstation.com
Check out my show The Cancer Warrior on Empoweradio.com available on demand now and also available on Itunes