This is still a running blog.
Even though I’m not running right now, I’m still a runner.
Three weeks ago I had a really bad weekend. My depression had taken a deeper hold than I thought and I ended up spending pretty much the entire weekend in bed. Listless and tired but unable to sleep. Uninterested in doing anything; I had no energy to even care. I just lay there in bed; exhausted, numb and lost.
I managed to drag myself to work the next week but it was so hard. I was so tired and an emotional wreck. I hid it well though, no one really knew there was anything wrong. But I knew how bad a state I was in, and the following weekend I decided it was time to get help.
I went to my doctor and asked to go back on medication for depression. She was sympathetic and understanding and her approach to treatment was well rounded, including more than just medication. She advised I get back exercising and make an effort to go out with friends. I told her that I have no friends to go out with; my three closest friends all live away from Ireland. I’ve known these friends for 10 years and that’s a hard thing to replace. I did tell my doctor about the running community I’m part of and how I’ve been making friends there and she encouraged me to stay involved.
At any rate, I also told the doctor that my insomnia, which is usually bad, has gotten worse. I’m getting next to no sleep and feeling exhausted all the time. She gave me a short supply of sleeping aids which I was very grateful for…only I went and accidentally threw them out with the pharmacy bag so they were of no use. I lost a night’s sleep out of sheer frustration with myself!
After my visit to the doctor I went for a long walk to think things through and since then I have started walking either on my lunch break at work or after work. Trying to get in the exercise she suggested. I have also found, unfortunately that my appetite which wasn’t great beforehand has swung wildly the other way and I feel hungry all the time now. I really have to get control over that, right now I am not making my usual healthy decisions.
The meds will take some time to begin working but I’m seeing some improvement already. I still can’t sleep but I do feel more alert and focused than I did before. It’s happening slowly but I’m taking an interest in life again and I’m starting to think ahead to when I can get back to running. When my exhaustion clears and my sleep improves I think I will see an even bigger difference and I actually have hope that day will be soon.
I do have people who care about me; friends who have looked out for me while I’m dealing with this. From a friend who sends me photos of flowers every day, to a friend who sent me daylight for Christmas. From one who constantly encourages me to another who texts me everyday to see how I’m doing; it has made a difference. These people have cared for and about me at a time when it’s difficult to care for myself. They have alleviated my loneliness and helped me smile at a time when smiles are hard to come by. Anytime someone remembers me and makes an effort to connect with me, it’s meaningful. It makes a difference.
I’m sad to say that this weekend I am back in bed, resting up after another week of restless sleep. I’ve had very little sleep and when I do sleep, I’ve been having nightmares. I’m so tired and feeling so drained that any plans I had to go out this weekend went out the window. There is a difference, however. Writing this blog for one thing, which three weekends ago I didn’t even have the energy for. I’m finding things to do instead of just laying around.
And I’m dreaming of a day when I’ll be back to my old self. The self who would get up early on a weekend and go for a run and a workout. The self who trained and tried so hard to improve as a runner. The happy, healthy self who disappeared last summer but who I know won’t be gone forever. With the medication I’m on (and I’ll be going back to the doctor next week as a follow up, I’ll ask for more sleeping aids then) and the friends I have at my back, I finally have hope that things are looking up.
Which is why this is still a running blog.
I’m still a runner. I promise.