Depression, Pregnancy and Meds

This past weekend my good friend totally surprised me with the most beautiful baby shower! It’s my first shower, I didn’t have one with my first pregnancy because I was too ill (in my opinion) and really didn’t want to be seen by anyone and I definitely didn’t want to be the center of attention. Self-conscious and low self-esteem are under statements. But I really enjoyed myself and am so thankful to her!

Baby Shower w/Greg

The day before my shower was a particularly hard day. Some days are just SO hard… As if pregnancy alone isn’t hard enough.

A little back story.

I immediately stopped taking the antidepressants I was prescribed as soon as I found out I was pregnant.

Cold turkey.

I know that’s not recommended but that’s what I did.

I felt great for several weeks but then I could sense the familiar heaviness of depression beginning to suffocate me. It’s no easy choice to decide to take any medication especially during pregnancy but if I have experienced clinical depression. I know that letting it slide will only cause the dark hole to become much deeper, making it much harder to climb out of. I had Ari to care for and cancelling his play dates constantly and being unavailable to him emotionally was not fair.

I felt I had to do something, so I tried to start taking the “safer” of my prescriptions but it (Zoloft) made me violently ill, vomiting all day on top of already having morning sickness. I was useless. I didn’t know what was worse, suffering emotionally or physically.

I knew I couldn’t handle both.

So I stopped. Again

After seeing my psychiatrist we decided to try the other script again, Wellbutrin… but (at the dose given) it too made me vomit. We lowered the dose and I could say it took the edge off… But I still wasn’t myself. Why in the world would I want to take a drug that may not be safe only to feel OK-ish?

My eyes burned, I had horrible brain fog in the afternoon and it made me very tired, more than I already was. I could be in the middle of a conversation and BAM! It was as if I hit a wall and could barely put a sentence together.

So I quit. Again… and began to devour books on natural treatments for depression. Spontaneous Happiness: A New Path to Emotional Well-Being, The UltraMind Solution: Fix Your Broken Brain by Healing Your Body First and The Depression Cure: The 6-Step Program to Beat Depression without Drugs are a few of the books I read. I’ll be starting The Mood Cure: The 4-Step Program to Take Charge of Your Emotions–Today this week.

Per the books suggestions and after consulting Google for further information, I opted for natural remedies… I also read through the reviews for each product on Amazon and there were people who reported improvement with depression.

I also switched to a Paleo Diet. When I did/do eat meat it is grass-fed and everything is organic. The point is to balance the ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids I was consuming. Omega 6s are easy to come by if you follow the SAD, Standard American Diet. Omega-3 not so much, and when they aren’t balanced it can cause all sorts of issues like depression, add adhd etc. (I will say that I may move back toward vegetarianism, meat makes me feel heavy — maybe pescatarian)

I felt well, great even for about a month but guess what. Here I am…. Again. Feeling that heaviness approaching. I will say that I don’t feel as badly as I did before so it must be working. I think that it’s a piece of the puzzle  I’m trying to complete. I also wonder if it’s being pregnant that has me feeling this way. I’m sure it plays a role, in regards to energy and motivation levels. I am just so very READY to feel healthy, energetic and like I’m thriving!

I am ready to have our baby so I can finally start with a clean slate and find what works for me and get/stay healthy.

Last week I talked about fighting depression with fitness. I do intend to make that happen 100%. I want to fight this depression from ALL angles. I believe that is very important. I will continue to research natural approaches, taking the supplements, to eat well, get sun, exercise and socialize as much as I can tolerate.

I have faith that the right combination of diet, supplements, exercise and possibly medication will allow me to find the health I seek.

In the midst of all this drama I am so thankful…

that I’m not nauseous all the time, that the shortness of breath is done, that I am able to get out and do things. I’m thankful that I am able to be a stay at home mom and am able to take a lovely nap everyday, and that was are able to afford organic foods. Those things are huge! Yes life comes with some crap but I am thankful for all the good I have been given.

10 more weeks until baby is born! Then it’s on!

Have you dealt with depression during pregnancy? What worked for you?

Postpartum Depression & Anxiety, Pregnancy
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2 Comments

  • Jahan Paleja
    June 28, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    Hi. Keeping you in my prayers. Yes, I have experienced prenatal depression. I went to counseling during that time. It was not helpful because I was not honest, but postpartum I started counseling for my postpartum anxiety and depression and it has been invaluable – because I’m more willing to be vulnerable and honest. I also have done most of the diet changes you mentioned. Look into( if you haven’t already) the impact of sugar on the depression. Processed sugar seems to trigger anxiety and depression in me. Also, blood sugar shifts… So I am very cautious to have protein with every meal and snack (especially during pregnancy). Stay encouraged and know that you are being prayed for by someone who has lived it too.

    • Raivon Lee
      June 30, 2016 at 1:11 pm

      Thank you so very much. I am extremely comforted to know that you are praying for me. I have noticed that even fruit makes me feel a little off/ill. So I am definitely watching the sugar intake. Of course I could do better. Thank you for your comment, your support and your advice. Greatly appreciated.