Monday, January 29, 2007

Water Rescue from Depression

Lately I have been waking up at noon on my days off, sometimes even later. Before I used to wake up at 11AM, which is late, but I felt fine about it because I have such sleep deprivation at work. I imagine that my new sleep schedule has something to do with Alan, who works a night EMT job and a server job, so we have chatted and visited with each other mostly at night.
But something has worried me about how I have been sleeping. I have been sleeping hard, and it feels like trying to get up earlier would be impossible. I have worried that maybe this is a sign of depression, triggered by my new busy lifestyle, might be kicking in.

Two nights ago I had a TERIFFIC late night with Alan, we watched a movie, and then since my roommate was home and my air mattress is very loud, we had very slow, quiet sex. It was amazing. I am one to push things fast and hard, so this was amazing to me, it was very sensual, and it lasted a long time, which usually I would hate, but it was paradise the other night. I must have fallen asleep about 2 and I had to be up at 8AM, but woke up at 6 and was too anxious to let myself fall back to sleep, because I was so afraid I might sleep in. So I had about 4 hours of sleep the night before last.

I was so sleepy driving my car to work I actually frightened myself. I wasn’t nodding off, but I was very sleepy. I drank a ton of coffee yesterday and made it through the day. I had a four hour break but instead of napping I went to see Linda while she tried on (and ended up purchasing) her wedding dresses. Even though I was extremely fatigued I still didn’t fall asleep until after 1.

But today it got scary. I set my alarm for 12:45PM, certain that I would already be up, but setting it just in case, since I had a lunch date with the pilots at 1:30. I could hardly move. I didn’t get up and start getting ready to go until 1:10PM. After lunch I fell right back to sleep.
I felt depressed. I felt depressed the night before, but I talked myself out of it, reminding myself how little sleep I had gotten. But I had slept all day now! There is no way I was tired instead of depressed, I was so upset. I had been doing so well, living like a normal person, I couldn’t believe it was back.

We went to the airport and I whined (unfortunately out loud) that I didn’t want to go through security (you have to take off your coats, take out your laptop, and lift your bags on and off of the conveyer, it sounds like a great deal of effort when you feel depressed. When I did the announcements I noticed the cabin looked much bigger and more difficult, like it felt when I first started the job. When the trash bag was too small for the bin, I groaned like eyore “Oh NOOOOOOO.”

I started writing down all of my symptoms, as well as possible triggers, I thought this would be useful to take to my therapist and maybe psychiatrist. I wrote how EXTREMELY TIRED I felt, but not the way I feel when I havent had enough sleep. Maybe I had slept too much? I wrote about how I dreaded little things like going through security. I knew this wasn’t normal.
What could have triggered it? Is it my pain about missing Charles, catching up with me since I haven’t dealt with them? Maybe my night with Alan was the trigger…he did seem uncomfortable in the morning, and maybe I was frightened of getting attached to him. Was it the emergency landing the other day that triggered it? Or maybe the fact that my DVD is broken on my computer…AGAIN. Maybe the trigger was all of these together, I am not sure.
But one thing that is different about me now, compared to before I was in therapy, is I feel hope. Depression and hopelessness go hand in hand. I felt compelled to take action in trying to recover, or at least prevent things from getting worse. So I wrote down a plan of action, and then I went on with my flight. My plan was to go for a walk around the airport, and to eat a salad so I was getting my veggies in. But then I remembered, there was another time when I felt so tired I was concerned, and after drinking a liter of water I felt better! So tonight I drank 2 cups of green tea and 3 of herbal tea, and I felt much better!

Right now I feel like I have been pardoned from receiving the death penalty! I am not going to say I am in a happy mood right now, but I haven’t felt depressed since I drank all of that tea! I haven’t peed very much which suggests my body could have needed those fluids, could it be that some of my depression problems are actually dehydration???

I feel very fortunate to have only had to taste depression. I am also hopeful that I will wake up tomorrow and not feel depressed. I hope this experience will scare me a little into taking good care of myself. Here is what I want to do to:
-Go back to eating a lot of vegetables and not a lot of fat.
-Start exercising again
-Go to bed earlier
-Blog more often
-Drink enough water.
-Drink 4 cups black tea a day (this has been clinically proven to lower Cortisol, a stress hormone)
-Read Buddhist and spiritual books, maybe meditate.

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