Some of you may have noticed a significant decline in new posts. That's because 1) I've been depressed, and 2) I've been writing reviews for a music web site (links: Moondance review, Dark Side of the Moon review). But don't worry, I found an old bottle of 5-htp and have started taking them to help my mood. That's a joke, but also serious. I did find a bottle of 5-htp and I am taking them again. How can a joke be serious, you're asking? I'm not sure. The point is that I realize pills don't make you happy. I decide to be happy and come hell or highwater, I'm happy.
You may not know this, but I'm a recovering anti-depressant addict. No, joking again. I wasn't addicted in the sense that I went on them voluntarily and I had to get a daily fix to function normally. Not like that. I went through depression in junior high school, when I was 13. So my mom took me to a psychologist, we deduced that I had a problem and then she suggested anti-depressants. First Prozac, then Zoloft, followed by Paxil. Not all at once, of course. One at a time. We finally settled on Paxil. Tom Cruise may find this hard to believe, but it worked for me.
The truth is, I didn't even know anything was wrong with me. I was just having a hell of a time in school and in my life. I was tired all the time and I thought about suicide often. Well, death more than suicide. So, I was really messed up because only messed up people think about death that often. Really, I'm not kidding. But I thought life was like that, you know. Messed up.
There are plenty of deeply embedded reasons that I became depressed. Puberty is the worst time of life, I think, and I was amidst that hell-storm. Plus my dad had gone psycho, so my mom divorced him and we were always on the run from him. For a year there were times when we'd pack up spur of the moment and head to my grandma's, because my mom had received death threats from my father (some may take death threats lightly, we didn't. Especially not when the violence and abuse he was capable of had already been exhibited) or his psychiatrist had called to tell her he was in a psychotic mental state.
Then after a year of this, my mom got remarried. My step-dad was a good guy, but I didn't like him at first. All of it was tough for me, but up to that point it was all I had known.
It wasn't like the psychologist dredged up repressed memories of abuse or anything (I just want to point that out). She helped me realize that it's not normal to want to sleep all day and to sleep through class, and to hate your family (oh yeah, and I hated my family, for reasons I can't fathom now). But it was normal to struggle and to feel alone and be upset that your dad left you. So therapy helped and so did the anti-depressants. And I was on them until I was 20 or something.
I'm not pushing anti-depressants or anything. And I'm also not complaining about my life, because my life has been fine. Good. Wonderful, and I'm rather pleased with how things have turned out. I don't have expectations that it's supposed to be easy. But I'm not the person who's going to point a finger and say that anti-depressants don't work and you should be ashamed for taking them. I feel otherwise. I've seen how they work for some people (me, duh).
And yes, I'm going to take advantage of a bottle of 5-htp I found in my medicine cabinet when I feel like it, because you know, sometimes it's just really tough to be happy even when you know you should feel happy, come hell or high water.