Citalopram withdrawals, my anxiety

Sorry this is going to be a bit of a ranty post as i’m feeling a bit rubbish and wanted to complain. A lot of people are aware that I’ve been taking anti-anxiety medication for the past year or so. I started taking Citalopram when my panic attacks started to happen every day instead of every other week and my anxiety was pretty much constant. I finally decided it was time for me to come off of the meds! I’m not going to lie, my panic attacks haven’t stopped but have become less frequent and I’m better at controlling my attacks and so I thought the summer before my second year would be perfect. It would have been ideal if I didn’t have to work but I’m struggling through alright. You just won’t see me outside of work and will very likely hear me say I’m feeling ill. Get used to hearing me say this as it’s supposed to last a while.

Before I get in to how I’m currently feeling I’ll let you all know that whilst taking these pills I felt a hell of a lot better than I did at this time last year. I could control my anxiety and I went 9 months without having a full panic attack. I don’t think I’ve ever gone that long without having one before and it felt amazing. The first week taking them I felt pretty rough. Every side effect listed I felt other than the suicidal thoughts thankfully. Because I was a mess and seriously questioned whether I’d made the right choice. To anyone currently going through that, don’t give up! Once your system is used to them they will hopefully help you as much as they did me. If not then go back to the GP and see what can be done! It’s worth sorting out.

On to the coming off of citalopram. I did as advised and before I decided to stop taking them I visited the doctor to see what he recommended. In his words ‘if they’re no longer working then just stop taking them’ this didn’t sound right to me as I’d been told not to stop and that I should come off them slowly but when I asked he told me it would be fine to just stop. Worst thing I’ve done, ever! It has been 10 days since I last took a tablet and I feel absolutely awful. I’m going to bed at 8.30 every night and have disrupted sleep, night sweats and vivid dreams. I could cope with the constantly being tired but I can’t handle the constant nausea. I have only vomited the once and honestly wish it was more because sometimes puking makes you feel better. I feel like the room is spinning and all unbalanced and horrible. These mainly hit in an afternoon and I try to eat as much when I first get up as I can because no matter how hungry I feel later in the day, I struggle to eat. If anyone comes in to contact with me in the next few weeks I apologise in advance as I can be a bit impatient and snappy even when I don’t mean to be.

I feel awful and wanted to share this as if you’re advised to just stop taking this medication, please question the doctor! I knew better, I should have followed my instincts and weaned myself off of them but I didn’t think it would be this bad. This withdrawal can apparently last around 6weeks and so I still have another month of feeling like this. If you have any tips on how to make things better then I’ll love you forever. I’m also due to start my period any day and so i’m very likely to feel even worse, so you all may want to avoid me in the next week or so.

Even feeling shitty as I do, I would still go on this medication if I reached that emotional point again, they are worth it! I’m proud of myself for coming off of them even though I currently would trade my body for anyone else’s. Anyone out there that is depressed or anxious or has attacks, please don’t wait until it reaches boiling point before you get help. There are milder medications then what I’ve taken! If you don’t want to try prescription medication then try herbal ones. Don’t let it linger. If anyone wants to know how I cope with my anxiety or anything about my attacks and what I’ve found sets me off, then don’t hesitate to ask. As I’m sure everyone is aware from having read my blogs, I’m pretty open to talk about anything, so just ask!

Now if you don’t mind I’m going to go curl up in a ball and feel sorry for myself before I have to get up for my 7am shift tomorrow.

Charlotte x

Period blog, cloth cycle 2

Okay, if you’re reading this and your only doing so because you’re a close friend or family member then I give you permission to turn away now. This is my oh so lovely detailed tale of this month’s menstrual cycle and I understand that not everyone will want to read about the ‘wonderful’ evacuation of the uterus. Again, turn back now! You shall not pass!

Anyone still here? Perfect! Okidokie, so this month was a complete and utter bastard. I’ve been off work for the last two weeks for a bit of relaxation and thought, ‘perfect! I’m due to start.’ I was due on the very first Saturday that I had off and thanks to good old Aunty Flo (who hates me) me period actually started on the Sunday that’s just gone. For those of you who know me, you’ll know I get extremely painful menstrual cramps and can’t be completely unable to walk and so starting on this Sunday just happened to coincide with the end of my two weeks off and I was due back at work on the Monday. Sod’s law right there! I thankfully started when I first woke up so there was no mess to worry about. I’d actually had a feeling I was going to start and so I’d worn one of my own homemade pads to bed that night, just in case. If you’ve seen my previous sewing blog, you’ll know how new I am to sewing anything but I am proud to announce that my first cloth pad worked! No leaks and it cleaned perfectly without any stains. Now I just need to buy snaps so it can be worn properly.

On to the rest of my Sunday. Fairly soon after I realised I had started my cramps began. I was relatively lucky this cycle as usually I have them the day leading up, the full night of (with no sleep), and for around two to three days in. This time they hit around lunch on Sunday. I was in enough pain that I didn’t want to leave my bed and clung to my hot water bottle as though it were ‘my only hope’. It wasn’t the worst it could be though as I could still get to and from the bathroom if I really needed to. I’d taken some ibuprofen around 11 knowing that my stomach would start and I just had a lay down in bed. I didn’t move in fear of making the pain worse and ended up having a bit of a nap. Got up again around 14.00 and felt achy but alive and so I had a bit of food so I could take my next dose of pills. I wasn’t too bad, fairly heavy but manageable. Wore maybe 3 or 4 pads in total, whereas if I was still on disposables it would have been around 6, so impressed so far.

The return to work was a bit daunting as I’m on my feet a lot and dealing with patients throughout the day and so feeling crampy isn’t great for a day of standing and trekking through corridors. I’m a Healthcare Assistant for those who don’t know. I took some ibuprofen when I woke up with my breakfast and took some heat pads, just in case. I have never had such an easy second day of my period before In my life! I was a little achy and crampy the closer I got to lunch but I could still walk! I was a very happy chappie. I was still pretty heavy and went through 5 pads, but that’s more for comfort then a real need to change them. I was amazed by my Essence of Eve pads as I was a bit dubious about the claims of being heavy pads but they were great. I’ll do individual reviews though in the coming few weeks.

The following two days there was no cramping at all but my stomach was a bit sensitive and wasn’t feeling very hungry. I used 3 pads a day including the overnight pads so I wasn’t too heavy. I had quite a few headaches though and felt a bit dizzy, probably because I wasn’t eating enough. No stomach cramps though thankfully.

The final day, no stomach cramps and only the one pad. I felt really queasy and dizzy and actually had to have a nap after I finished my shift. Still felt rubbish and my stomach was a bit off. Usually I do feel like I have a bug when I’m on my period but this cycle I have to wonder if I have in fact had a bit of a stomach bug. Or maybe an ear infection which is causing the dizziness because I still feel a bit off today and my cycle has ended.

Anyways back to the period. It was a short 5 day cycle for me that started heavy and stayed that way for the first 3 days. This is my second full cycle with all cloth pads and so far I have been a lot comfier and I love picking out which pads to use! All the patterns make things a bit more entertaining. Like I said, I will start uploading pad reviews so if there are any brands you’d like to hear about or if there is any particular information you’d like to know about pads, please let me know so I can include it.

Thanks for reading!

Charlotte x