mental health

WHO AM I NOW??

That is the one question that has been eating at me since losing my mother. Who am I? For 36 years I was “lil Marianne”, “Marianne’s twin” or “Her precious gem”. That’s all I really knew. But now that she’s gone I have no clue who I am anymore. I always knew losing a parent would be a pain that hit way different. But what I didn’t know was that I would completely lose who I am as a person because I didn’t know how to be anything else. Being a motherless daughter has my mind so confused that nothing makes sense anymore. I don’t know my place in the family anymore. I don’t have that mother figure to call whenever I needed advice on anything. Being a motherless daughter has completely f****d me up because I feel lost. This is in by no means to over shadow the horrible pain that my brothers have. If I could take away their pain I would in a heartbeat. I told them that we all had our own unique relationship with our mother. I am trying to make sense of everything from a daughters point of view.

I have 2 kids of my own and trying to grieve while still being a mom is extremely hard because you have to be strong for them. My kids have seen me cry, but its usually my daughter coming in to give me a hug. How do you grieve properly without completely breaking down because you still have to be a parent. That’s what I am trying to figure out. Balancing the two while not going completely insane.

When I say “who am I now?” I mean that as not only a mother, sister, daughter, wife. Do I take over the roll of “mom” for the family to make sure that everyone is doing ok and that they aren’t alone, or keeping up with the traditions that we would have with her. My entire identity is in question and that hurts. People tell me just to be myself but how can I be myself when I don’t even know who the hell I am anymore. I know I feel stuck, confused. Not sure about feelings that I have. Trying to find myself and happiness has me scared that it will lead me away from people. I have really dove into religion because 1 my mom always said god will make a way and 2 it makes me feel closer to her. But how do I know if I’m on the right path or if I’m going in the right direction for my own happiness and inner peace. I have so many questions about my life, my marriage, my womanhood and I’m so confused on them all I just wish my mom was here to help talk me through it. Trying to become yourself again after losing one of the biggest impacts in your life has you questioning everything. Is the sky even blue anymore lol.

I don’t know who I am going to be during this new walk of life but all I know is I can’t keep doing it for other people. And that is the type of peace I am looking for. Doing me without being worried about other peoples reactions or critiques. My mom would say “people are going to talk about you no matter what. But just do you boo because that’s all you can do” I wish she was physically here to help me through it all. But I know she is walking right beside me. Making me strong for myself. I just hope whatever path I’m walking on is the right one.

**MUCH LOVE**

Addiction · alcoholism · mental health · self love

**Another New Med???**

One thing no one really talks about while suffering with mental health issues is the constant medication change. I first got diagnosed with depression at the age of 16. Back then (2001) no one was open about depression. It wasn’t so much frowned upon but more of an “embarrassment “. It definitely wasn’t publicized like it is now. People either thought you were crazy or just looking for attention . So as a teenage girl already being hormonal and then on top of that getting put on antidepressants. I honestly felt like an outsider, ashamed that I would be labeled like as a weirdo or something. The 1st antidepressant I was put on at the age of 16 was Paxil. I honestly don’t remember if it made a big difference or not because I also was also put on birth control to try to stop the endometriosis that I had. I was on Paxil until I graduated from college (age 19) because I was no longer on my dad’s health insurance. So I went a good amount of years before I ended up back on antidepressants. I was 26 and just had my daughter and I just felt off. Just down in the dumps and felt like I could cry or snap at any moment. So I went to my MD and he kept trying to tell me that it was all in my head. So needless to say I switched doctors.

My new MD was very thorough with everything. Ran all kinds of blood test and he asked why I went to my other MD because he didn’t do “shit” (which was completely true). So we ended up increasing the dose of the Paxil to see if that would help at all. A few months later it felt like there was no change. The meds weren’t working because I was extremely depressed still and had no motivation for anything. In comes antidepressant #2 Prozac. Now that med did help. But after about a year and a half and two strength increases it stopped helping. It was getting to the point where I just wanted to give up because it felt like I would never find a medication that would work fully. So we ended up trying to switch it again and that was the 3rd medication change in about 3 years. We tried Lexapro next and once again that seemed to help. But around this time was when I started to drink heavily because it seemed like nothing was going right. So I decided to go see a therapist and try to talk through my depression and anxiety.

The MD was ok. Not really my cup of tea but I kept going thinking it would just take time. So here comes antidepressant #4 Zoloft. And lets just say once I was on that med is when the shit show of my life really started. I would throw up about 45 minutes of taking it and it was like that for a couple months. I let therapist know and he just kept saying “it takes time. I don’t want to switch you to something else” That’s when I started to feel helpless. I just wanted to feel happy and it seemed nothing would work, other than alcohol. Zoloft + alcohol= self destructive Antoinette. I really didn’t care about anything at that point. I was so hurt by things that was going on in life at that moment that I felt extremely exhausted with life. After a few months of living in that mind frame I just gave up. I stopped taking the meds correctly and tried every other day thinking that would help. But it didn’t. So the drinking was in full force because that seemed to be the only thing that would help. And all it did was destroy my life. That’s what led up to my breakdown.

At the mental facility I checked myself into the psychiatrist that was there was awesome. He was very patient and kind. So we tried going back to using Paxil. So when I got out of there my primary MD kept me on it because it seemed to help. Whelp that fairytale didn’t last to long and as of this moment right now I am on antidepressant change #6. I have been on trintellex for about 2 years now and it was helping. Then covid hit and my depression and anxiety went through the rough (just like everyone else) So my strength got increased and a “booster med” was added to help. Wellbutrin was added to the mix and so far it seems to be ok. But still having all of this stress and lack of self worth it feels like I might has to change again. But I really don’t want to. Having to go through that whole routine of waiting for a month or so for the meds to work is complete shit and it sucks. So now I am trying to find something to help calm me down that is not a medication. And this blog has definitely helped.

So no matter what your situation is. Whether you are medicated or not. Its still a battle trying to get your mental health to a point where it doesn’t consume your entire life. No matter what you are going through. Just remember that you are going to be ok. It won’t seem like it. Hell it still doesn’t feel like it for me but I’m hoping that connecting with people going through the same thing as me will help break that stigma embarrassment that we feel.

*Much love*

Uncategorized

**DANCING WITH THE DEVIL**

When you are in the thick of your addiction you do not care what, who or how you hurt people. All you care about is where you are going to get your next fix or your next drink. This tango of being in addiction mixed with mental health issues, I was seriously Dancing With the Devil. The devil of addiction. A lot of people have asked me why people who are in recovery always seem to find Jesus. Well when you stare the devil straight in the eyes you pray that there is something or someone who can come save you. Faith helps you get through some of the roughest times. Do I go to church every Sunday? No I don’t. Do I believe in God. Yes! Very much. You cry out to god to save you because the devil has you in his grasp.

One thing that I am trying to do is suppress the thoughts of the f**k ups I did while I was drinking, or at least keep them at bay. I still beat myself up over everything. I know I am not the same person as I was 4 and half years ago. But the actions from when I was in active addiction still live rent free in my head. That is something that I have to live with. But my goal for my own life is to not let that define me. Seeing the world with out drunken goggles on makes you see things and people a different way. Your judgement is no longer clouded by any substance and can actually see things for what they are.

I have been asked if in these last 4 and a half years have I ever relapsed. And with my right hand up to the big man upstairs I can proudly say that NO I HAVEN’T. Some people aren’t that lucky to have been able to step away. People have stumbled and relapsed. Some people have relapsed with years of sobriety under their belt and that 1 time cost them their lives. And right now there are people in active addiction praying to god to make their pain stop.

After I first got sober I had to come face to face with all of the pain that I have caused family and friends during my active addition and let me tell you! Baby that was a type of pain I NEVER want to feel again. When you are drinking or doing drugs or both you don’t have to fully comprehend all of the hurt you are causing because you are not coherent enough to even care. So when your body is rid of all the substances you put in it, you have to feel ALL OF THE HURT without a clouded mind state and for a lot of people they can’t handle that pain. They end up relapsing to not hurt anymore. I think the main reason why I haven’t relapsed is because I would be more disappointed in myself than my friends or family. The guilt from the aftermath is what is keeping me sober. Are there times where I would love to have A drink to relax?? HELL YEAH. But will I do it?? HELL NAW!!!! No matter what it is that is keeping you sober keep it up. You never know which person you may help with how you are doing your recovery. Recovery is not one size fits all. Some people do well with meetings and a sponsor and others are fine with just reading blogs about it because at least you know you aren’t ever alone.

To the people who are still “dancing with the devil” I pray that you can get the help that you need to stop that vicious tango of hell. If you need anyone to talk to, or need information on how to take that first step to get sober. I am always here💖

Much love

” It’s just a little red wine, I’ll be fine
Not like I wanna do this every night
I’ve been good, don’t I deserve it?
I think I earned it, feels like it’s worth it
In my mind, mind

Twisted reality, hopeless insanity
I told you I was okay but I was lying

I was dancing with the devil, out of control
Almost made it to heaven, it was closer than you know
Playing with the enemy, gambling with my soul
It’s so hard to say no, when you’re dancing with the devil”

-Dancing with the devil
Demi Lovato