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Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Hiatus Explained

Be warned in advance that this post contains uncomfortable (for me, maybe also for you!) details regarding mental health and menstruation.  Two scary M’s!  

Deep breath.  

So although there were a couple of factors that lead to my time off blogging, there was one big one.  Premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

A less scary M! Molly the barn dog :)

I have probably had PDD my entire life, although I only recently got this official diagnosis.  I’ve always had a few days a month were I don’t cope very well and feel very anxious.  But in April it got very bad.

Maybe you’re thinking “Oh like PMS? That’s not so bad.”  And I probably would have thought exactly the same thing.  Until the last few months happened and I spent 5-7 days before my period arrived in a severely anxious/depressed state.  I had what can only describe as an “anxiety attack” before one of my lessons on Mystic - I couldn’t breathe at all and it got to the point of me nearly throwing up.  I was not coping well.   



I am a really silly happy person.  And for those 5-7 days where I felt completely terrible I still behaved like myself.  But it was completely exhausting.   And I got any kind of bad news or anything didn’t go exactly as I planned I would be a complete mess.  Only in May I finally told my husband how tough of a time I was having.  He had no idea.  He said the only time he saw me act differently when was when I got really anxious about trailering Mystic to the Eventing 101 clinic.  Because usually I’m alone in my car driving when I'm upset. 

I decided that this wasn’t working for me and I wanted to make some changes.  I focused all my energy on helping myself feel better. Hence the blog silence in May!

I have switched to different type of birth control that my doctor recommended to help balance out hormonal issues.  I have taken a few CBT sessions to help give me better coping skills on the tough days.  I have decided to limit my driving and riding time a bit during that difficult premenstrual time frame.   My brain really goes into a negative spiral when I’m driving a lot (which I have to do when I see the horses).  And I worry about losing my temper or freaking my horses out with my out of whack emotions (I haven't but I do worry that I will).  I’m also working on getting more sleep, exercise and eating better.  



This is a big part of the reason I decided to move Mystic home from a busier boarding stable.  That barn is also really far away from my house and since driving can be tough on me, reducing my drive time was a good idea.  I also prefer a less busy atmosphere, if I'm having a shitty day I don't need to feel embarrassed (because I'm usually alone).

Anyway, sorry if this was a bit of TMI post to read.  I just wanted to be honest about what's been going on behind the scenes. Things are actually going really great right now and I'm feeling a lot better.  So that's where I was in May :)



37 comments:

  1. Tmi here too, but my dr recommended a copper iud for me, bc the depression issues didn't really need any more help by hormones being imbalanced by meds. It was good until it decided to eject itself out last month. Ouch.

    But hope you get to feeling better. It is really tough. I'm here to talk any time! Hugs to you and yours. Take care.

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    1. Oh no, that sounds awful! Funny how different system affect each other so seriously. Thanks for the hugs and the ear offer... might have to take you up on that some time :)

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  2. It's important to take care of you. I'm glad you were able to realize you could help yourself and made some changes to keep your life running more smoothly. Good for you! Hope you're feeling better!

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    1. Thanks, I am feeling much much better now. It was really eye-opening to me as I have friends with severe anxiety/depression and it gave me a short window into their world.

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  3. I really admire when people honestly put out what they are going through, both the good and the bad. I'm glad you got some help and are doing better :)

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    1. Thanks, I feel kind of weird putting it out there! It's something that has affected my journey with my horses/life so I couldn't really not mention it haha :)

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  4. I am glad you shared! We all have stuff we go through, and it helps to feel like we're not alone. I commend you for taking care of yourself and putting your health first.

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    1. Thanks, I feel a bit funny about it but it feels good to share. :) I'm happy things are finally on an upswing!

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  5. Sorry you went through that and glad that there are medical options for you to go to to help you through it. *big hug*

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    1. Thank you! Was a bit of a tough time. Hug appreciated! :)

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  6. I'm sorry it was so rough for you, but I'm glad that you have been able to take care of yourself and are doing much better. I appreciate you sharing something so personal and honest. :)

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    1. Thank you for your kind words! It definitely made me uncomfortable writing this (hence why it's been in my drafts folder since June haha) but it's part of my weird wonderful journey with horses. :)

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  7. I was just talking to my therapist about this yesterday! Well, not this as a diagnosis, but feeling like this right before every cycle. I've only recently been able to detect a pattern - I think I just attributed it to overall pms but slowly I've realized that there's more to it. Thanks for sharing! I'm glad you have been able to talk this out and get support!

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    1. Oh interesting! I didn't notice the correlation until I started actually tracking my cycle, then I was like holy crap. I attributed it to pms too, but sometimes it can be more serious than that for sure. I don't have my bcp with me but the brand I'm on now really did help, I can e-mail you the name if you like to try it (don't remember it offhand unfortunately!). Thanks for the encouragement :)

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  8. I'm so glad you're feeling better...also, you're very brave and absolutely not alone with the double M's, I have been there myself and have some friends who have too. Huge virtual hug :)

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    1. Thanks for the virtual hug and kind words! Things are definitely much better now, but definitely not a fun time for a bit. :)

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  9. I've always had a difficult time and the hormones always made me worse. I also suffered from post-partum depression. Finally I had an iud that gives localized progesterone (Minerva) and my life became normal. Now I'm in menopause and, other than the hot flashes, it's so much better

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    1. Thanks for sharing your experience! Scary how much hormone can affect our mental
      health sometimes. :( glad things are better for you now!!

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  10. I had this problem on my old BC pill, it was awful! Glad you are feeling better!

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    1. It is not fun for sure! Thanks, me too :)

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  11. I'm so sorry to hear you were going through this. Anxiety and mood issues are so much more difficult to deal with when you have no idea where they are coming from. Thank goodness you have a diagnosis and a plan. CBT can be really helpful in overcoming your trigger spots. Take care!

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    1. It was very strange as it seemed like only a few days of the month were a big struggle, the rest were fine... But I began to dread those days in a big way! I am so happy that things are better now :)

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  12. i'm glad you have been able to make some choices and changes that are more likely to keep your mind at ease when things get rough!

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    1. Thanks! A few minor changes have made a huge difference :)

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    1. Yes a lot of :( ... But now things are :)

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  14. Glad that you took active steps to try and figure out what was needed to improve your quality of life <3 A hiatus from blogging isn't always a bad thing- those who were here for you from the start will always be here (:

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    1. Thanks! I felt so all over the place... It was hard for me to put things into words. The support on this post has been heart-warming - I was so nervous about posting it!

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  15. As tough as it is to write about, I'm sure its also helpful? Maybe? Glad you have some answers and ways to manage the problem!

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    1. It is tough for me for sure... I really try to be a positive person and it makes me feel sort of whiny. But it's all part of my life, and it does feel good to share :)

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  16. It must be awful going through this but it sounds like you've found a way to cope. I hope you will feel much better with the meds you are taking now. Hang in there and keep smiling things have a way of working themselves out eventually.

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    1. Thank you for your kind words <3 Things are much better now!

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  17. Ugh that sounds really terrible. Hugs to you!

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  18. I'm so sorry you had to go through that, but I am SO SO SO glad you took time for yourself and got the help you needed. I've struggled with depression for all of my adult life, and getting help is so incredibly important. Cheers to feeling more like yourself and being the best you you can be :D

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