Sunday, February 12, 2012

things i love, day six & giveaway!

there's a gal who i stalk daily.  her name's jenny lawson, and she's also known as the bloggess. 

my brother-in-law chance introduced me to her writing a few years ago.  i think the conversation went something like this:

c: hey, you gotta check out this blog.  this chick is freaking hilarious.

t: oh yeah?

c: yeah, she kind of talks like she might be on drugs.

and that, my friends, pretty much sums it up.  but in a good way.  she's not for everyone, so if you're easily offended, don't say i didn't warn you!

she is so funny and real and crazy and approachable and just, awesome.  she is unapologetically honest and furiously happy.  she makes me laugh every time i read her.  she's the partner in crime i never had, which i'm sure is a good thing.  whether she's wearing a wolf or pajama jeans to a premiere, dressing up taxidermied animals for photo shoots, or posing for amazing portraits in a traveling red dress, she manages to do it all with humor and style.  a few weeks ago she wrote something that hit close to my heart.  she wrote about her struggle with depression.  and she started an unofficial silver ribbon movement in blogland. and i love her.

i've dealt with depression for most of my adult life.  i've had bad spells before, but the worst was after the birth of our 2nd.  and thankfully, i got some help.  but it wasn't easy to do.  i felt so guilty - why couldn't i just be happy?  i had these two wonderful babies, an amazing life, so what was wrong with me?

sweet pea on tumblr
when i finally started seeking help,  i had already tried remedies like st. john's wort, 5 HTP, and vitamin b.  i went back to our regular doctor (who had recommended the vit b and 5 HTP initially) who sighed, told me to get a babysitter, and acted as if i was wasting his time while i cried.  i'm still amazed at that.  (we have a new doctor now) i understand that he was suggesting i take time for me.  but there was nobody to help.  we lived hours from family, out in the country, and with a colicky baby and a toddler, going anywhere was too overwhelming to handle.

this wasn't too long after tom cruise had his outburst against antidepressants, and i have to admit, my husband agreed with him.  when i finally started taking something, i didn't even tell him right away.  i couldn't handle being judged when i was already so fragile.  it was so hard for him to comprehend what i was dealing with.

but we were in trouble.  i was in trouble.  and thankfully, my ob/gyn was someone i felt comfortable enough with to broach the subject.  (emma & alex are only 14 months apart, i'd practically been living at his office!)  i made an appt, and he talked with me as i bawled, & tried to sort out if anything else was going on.  he convinced me that even thought there was no such thing as a "happy" pill, what was the harm in trying medication?  what if it actually did help?   i'm happy to say it does help.  a lot.  and my husband realized that it helped too.  and we made it through.  i still take 100 mg a day of sertraline.  and i continue to struggle against it, and accept the fact that there will be days when i can't handle life, when all i can do is cry, when things will feel worse before they get better.  but they will get better.



so in honor of the silent struggle so many of us face, and the families that watch, bewildered and helpless, i bought a couple silver ribbon buttons from the bloggess' shop and i am giving them away.  just leave me a comment if you'd like to win one.  i'll draw 3 names randomly and contact you for your address.

she's right.  never give up.  depression IS a lying bastard.  and thank you jenny, for being so awesome!!


giveaway is now closed


13 comments:

gill said...

I'm lucky to have never suffered with depression but I have a friend who does so I have an inkling of what you're going through!
All credit to you(and others) for talking openly about it

Nancy D. said...

I love the Bloggess. I happened upon her when she was telling her story about the giant rooster - you know - knock knock mother f'r! I suffer from depression/anxiety too; it started after my kiddos (18 mo apart) were born. Hormones are a scary powerful thing. It sucks and there are so many who just don't get it. I was taking Welbutrin XL for several years. I weaned myself off of it because I hate to go to the doctor. I NEED to go to the doctor and get my happy pill back. There are days when I literally want to hide under a desk or in a closet. My logical side tells me I know whats going on but it doesn't ease the pain and guilt. It pisses me off. But what has been great {if you want to call it that} has been the openess of so many women on their blogs like the bloggess and you. I think it makes me feel less like a freak of nature who can't handle life. Anyhoo - thank you for sharing your story. We know it's not always going to be easy, but it will get better in time. Take care!

Sharon said...

I'm sorry to hear about your struggles. I do know how conflicted you feel and winter cold and dreariness makes it worse. I've recently gotten off meds after 15 years so there is hope for you, too. It doesn't have to be forever.

Rachel said...

Awesome that you are taking care of yourself! Thank you for being able to "put it out there". You never know who's life you might touch!

tara said...

Thanks so much for sharing on your blog. I have struggled with depression too. Post partum 12 years ago and situational through out the last 12. Its real and there is help. You are so awesome for posting about this.

sandyb said...

thank you so much for sharing your struggle. So many people don't as I didn't for many years. I am 57 as it was always "in your head" so to speak and I suffered for many, many years always having to be the strong one - an ill husband, losing a child, a daughter with leukemia, etc. I am not complaining - our daughter is well and healthy and I am now a grandma, my husband is still ill but he is doing good and I am now on meds - I will always be on them for the rest of my life but life is good now and I have learned that I need to ask for help and it is not defeat and that I am not a horrible person to do so:). It is so good so see that people talking about this bastard of hell called depression. It sucks the life out of you and doesn't want to give it back and even with meds, sometimes it is hard. Thank you!

Colleen said...

Thanks for sharing! You are courageous and awesome! I have had brushes with depression and resulting after my battle with cancer 6 years ago. I realize looking back that my Dad, and his mother and his grandmother have also suffered with it at times. Thanks you for helping to take the stigma out by your openness.

Nikki McDonald said...

Thanks for sharing, Tammie. I love the bloggess, too. That rooster saga really had me in stitches. :)

I really appreciate when bloggers keep it real by getting personal from time to time. It makes them seem more human and makes me as a reader feel more "normal". Thanks for letting us get to know you better.

I sometimes become a bit of a hermit & it's hard to get out & interact with others. Happens a lot, actually. Maybe that's why I get so much sewing done!

Seriously, we should try to get together sometime soon. I'm planning on coming to the KCMQG sewing Sunday next weekend. Hope you'll be free & able to come. If not, we will try something different & maybe even let the kids come along!

Jeanne Gwin said...

Tammmie, You touched my heart. I know how you feel because i have lived there much of my life. I too take the elusive "happy pill" for without it I am a 'ringtailed bitch". It is a wonder i have any friends because i am not the most pleasant "friend" on some given days. But for the grace of God and my friends patience and bluntness, i make it through. We are close enough to each other that if you really want a partner in crime, I think it could be arranged that we could get together and make a good day of trouble for someone else Hee Hee. You hang in there girl, it all washes out in the end.

Catskill Quilter said...

Fabulous post! I have moderate clinical depression and am on medication - it is the only smart thing to do and hopefully as more and more of us can speak of it, this disease will be easier for others to treat too. I'd rather be happy than be sad! Thanks for your courage; I would not be surprised if you touch a whole bunch of lives today!

Melinda Cornish said...

I had an out and out breakdown this summer and some people are supportive, some not...I love the just be tough and pull yourself together pep talk....
I definitely will go check out this lady's site.....

Lauranie said...

you are one awesome gal!! Of course I have always known that...but I would never have guessed this about you because of your awesomeness. So glad you have the strength and courage to know what is best for you and rise above the dreariness! Hope you know you can always use me as an outlet for whatever...I don't offend easily ;) xo

Swedish Scrapper said...

Thanks so much for sharing your story. I also have depression, and have had it quite some time without knowing it. What a difference the right medication makes! It's not just the sadness that got me down, but the brain fog and passivity. Good to just grab a hand and climb out. Being open really helps.

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