Sunday, April 20, 2008

Depression and Swine Hormones

The last few months I've been experiencing some hormonal and seasonal related depression. I usually have kept this at bay with consistent exercise, good vitamins and amino acids, and learning something that I'm excited about.

I was doing well until the first of February when I cut the fleshy tip of my thumb off and started working again. That was the week. I dragged myself to our sales training for three days. I didn't want to be there! I wanted to be at the gym, dancing. I wanted to be at school finishing my open-enrollment computer class, and enrolled in school for fall. I wanted to be anywhere, but there. My thumb was hurting so I couldn't exercise even if I wanted to. I had to be at the sales training. I had committed to working another season. It is a great job, and I know it, so I felt guilty. My boss, (my sister) knew that I was thinking about more schooling and told me that I wasn't obligated to work for her. But I had committed, not only to her and my sales manager, but to my husband and myself. And it kept snowing and snowing and snowing. It all seemed to go downhill from there.

I took my computer test on Microsoft Word as soon as sales training was over, and set school aside until June when our sales campaign is over. But it seemed I had a mental block. The phone at work weighed a hundred pounds. I was having anxiety and guilt. But I started. Slowly. I called my best clients, and had some success. I remembered that I really like the people with whom I work. I was feeling somewhat better, but still dragging. My negative thoughts were getting the best of me. My heart wasn't in it. It felt as if I were carrying 100 lbs to work each day. I spent hours reorganizing my contracts, and checking my email (OK, it wasn't really hours). It kept ringing in my head, "don't want to be here, not a career, can't do it, heart's not in it, have to do it, have to do it, I'm committed, I'm not a flake," and so it went for a couple of weeks.

My emotions were right on the surface. I cried at work, about work. (I can honestly say that that is a first!) I had a confrontation with my sales manager (who is not my sister) about the fact that he didn't give me any of the good sales leads.

Description of said confrontation:
Me, smiling, and arrogant, as I handed him a renewed contract, "My last client just increased his ad by $2000!"
"That is great, kid!" looking at my contract.
"Do you know how I got that client last year?" I said, proudly. "I got it from the white lead sheets, which I didn't get any of this year."
"How would you know that?" he said, surprised, and puzzled.
"I saw that the others had them and I didn't. When did you hand them out? Were you thinking that I didn't deserve any because I am only part-time and in school, too?"
He paused, thinking, "I honestly don't remember, but it could have been something like that. I did it at the beginning of the campaign. Did you lose sleep over it?"
"No, I just was wondering how you expect me to increase my sales without any good leads." It was matter of fact. I didn't feel emotional. I felt better. It was out in the open. I was part-time. It isn't my career of choice. I really didn't want more work, more hours. The weight had lifted. (I know what you are thinking, big, scary confrontation, NOT!)
I remembered, I like my job. I'm good at it! I am an asset to my sister's company, if only for one more season, or if I decide to stay for many. I can pick away at my other dream education in the summer and fall, and enjoy the journey. The guilt is gone! I am committed for this season, and it is good.

Work has been so much better. Life has been better . . . except when those swine horrormones change. I have violent, scary nightmares for a couple nights around day 14, and feel withdrawn, sluggish, and worthless days 20-25, and then achy for days 1-3. In March on day 14 I was crying, feeling hopeless, and in the depths of despair and everything was GOOD! Logically, I knew it was good. I could spend days, even weeks counting my blessings. I was exercising some, but not enough and it was still cold, overcast and snowing. I knew I had to do something! In a 24 day cycle I had 11 days that I felt off! That is almost half of month feeling yucky!

I googled PMS and found Dr. Northrup's women to women website. I ordered her wellness program for my birthday. I started exercising 4 days a week. I have started a better diet, lower in refined carbs. I started taking the prescription of Prometrium (bio-identical progesterone) that my doctor prescribed in November that I had only tried for 2 months. I linked over to a website on Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) that Dr. Northrup's site said can help with health issues. I called Arden Compton, ND and set up an appointment. (more on this later)

My last cycle was much better. I'm excited about life again.


Becky said...

Wow! That sounds emotionally draining! I am sorry! You do write very well by the way. Keep going, I want to read more!

Amanda Kristeen said...

Sister Allen! I just saw Mindy's mass email and checked it out and saw the links to yours. Sounds like life is exciting for you as usual - At least the snow seems to be over for now. :) Hope life is going well - I love your tender mercies blog - that is such a good idea!