I am definitely one of those people who believes in celebrating the wins in life, regardless of their size, because you have to. One must embrace the positives lest the negatives wrap themselves around you and suffocate you. Geez. That got morose pretty fast. But really, I’m here to share an update on my journey to contributing less to Big Pharma.
It was back in February of this year, Valentines Day or close to, that I went to see my friend Annabella for a single session of RTT (Rapid Transformation Therapy) and we discovered the root cause of the depression that had been plaguing me for 10 years. I wrote this post about my experience and I will always be available to anyone who wants to know more about that. It was a really enlightening and amazing experience and I could feel it in my bones that we had hit the mark and I was done with the depression. One day I will write a more in depth post about that experience I think. I left out a lot of details in my first post. Maybe.
Now I should make it clear that I did not just waltz in off the street, lay down and “take the cure.” There had been a good deal of work in the lead up to this. I had worked with a holistic nutritionist and gone off dairy which was a huge health change. I have been working with a professional coach who had contributed to my giant strides forward in personal growth and understanding. Jodi helped me hold up the depression outside of and apart from myself and look at it as an unwanted parasite, not a thing that was part of me. Its “the” depression, not “my” depression. I had been working with a personal trainer, Amy, who had me running up and down stairs, doing squats till I cried and generally getting me back into a more fitness-y mindset. I had the will, I was making the way. There was a team. I am a firm believer that everyone who wants to accomplish something big, can assemble a team without shame and with huge success. So, GO TEAM!
Here is the update. I have been taking two antidepressants. The first, Cipralex, I have been on since day 1. Luckily I didn’t have to mess around too much. I took to it easily and have had no annoying side effects. Although I am sure there are things that are a result of the medication, I refer to side effects like dry mouth or anxiety. A few years down the road I felt like things weren’t going well so I started on Wellbutrin as well. Max dose of both. That’s where I have been for several years. And I can’t get Wellbutrin in North Africa so I have had to get it in Canada (6 months at a time) and then have a bottle muled to me during the year. (Thanks David and Sandra).
I did some reading. Kelly Brogan has been one good source of information (but she is also an anti-vaxxer so caution is required). I learned along the way that medical doctors are not trained on getting off meds. Just dosing you up. This makes sense to me. There are a lot of things that the medical profession is responsible for and a lot of things that we need to find from others in related fields. It is widely known and must be stated in any conversation about psychotropic medication that going cold turkey is NEVER an option. I had read that Wellbutrin stays in your system for 4.5 days, and of course I couldn’t halve the tablets because they are time released. So I started with 2 pills alternating with 1 pill. I did that for 3 weeks. Then I took 1 pill only for 3 weeks. Then 1 pill alternating with 0 pill. All for 3 weeks. I’m here to tell you that I have been off Wellbutrin completely for 1 week!!!! Done.
I had some days during the process when I didn’t feel great. Right after changing the dose the first 3 or 4 days were a little “off.” But when I say “off,” it also could have been the change in weather, a strong full moon, a tiny flu bug, a few bad nights of sleep. It was that type of “off.” Something was happening but nothing to prevent me from carrying on with my day.
I feel great. I don’t miss the meds. I don’t feel like it was the wrong thing to do. I don’t feel any symptoms of depression at all. In fact, to check in on myself I retook the burns-depression test which is an industry standard. Developed by Dr. David Burns, his books are a WEALTH of knowledge on depression.
When I first took the test last November I scored a 60. I was shocked to read that equalled “severely depressed.” I took the same test last week and came in at a whopping 7. That’s right, “normal, but unhappy.” Honestly I don’t know what I have to be unhappy about when I get to see snippets of beautiful Morocco and travel around staying in luxury hotels, meeting guests from all over the world, building a strong and productive business, and making great friends. But whatevs.
Now I wait two more weeks and start a tapering schedule off the Cipralex. This will not only put my in my doctors office in Canada during that process but will get my off the meds completely by September!