I'm letting my mind take a break
I've been feeling pretty overwhelmed lately. This isn't something new for me, but since last month, I've been feeling more overwhelmed than usual. It's like I'm being pulled in different directions.
I'm not having a depressive episode, but I'm at the threshold. If my depressive episode is a house, then I'm already on the porch. I don't want the door to open and be asked to come in, so I need to cut back on things I devote my energy to, or else, this feeling would turn into a full-blown depressive episode.
So, friends, I'm sorry if I've been "absent" lately. I'm sorry if I haven't been active in group chats, online events, and other virtual groups. I just need to conserve my energy and give my mind space to breathe. I need to allow my mind to do nothing. So far, this has helped me manage, especially now that I've been off my anti-depressant since early this year.
What? You're no longer taking your meds?
Yes, that's right. My psychiatrist and I have talked about weaning me off my anti-depressant during my session last September. At that time, though, I felt I wasn't ready yet, but we discussed how we were going to do it. And so, last January, when I felt I could already manage my triggers, I started taking my medicine (5 mg of Escitalopram) every other night instead of every night. I did this for a month. Then, come February, I started to not take it, and I haven't had the need to take it ever since.
Without my medicines, I rely on the skills I learned in therapy to process my negative thoughts, cognitive distortions, and basically everything happening to me that could be a trigger. Oftentimes, I am scared, because there's always the risk of relapse, and I don't want that. I've worked so hard to be mentally better, and I cannot let anything pull me into a downward spiral. But thankfully, I often catch myself in time to process a negative thought and realize that it's not what I think it is in real life.
I'm happy with this progress, that's why I'm working extra hard to keep my mind behaving this way. If this means taking a break from socializing with various groups of people and not participating in activities outside work and my daily routine, then so be it. And if you're in one of these groups, please know that I have nothing against you. My mind just neds some space.
Feature image by Artem Beliaikin from Pexels