Here's my ticker!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Hard Times

So, yesterday I said I was going to talk about my first breakdown. This isn't a very pleasant topic for me, so you'll excuse me if I jump around a lot while telling it.

It was around February 2003. I had been at my job around 3 yrs and a half. Since at that time I was still a c.ustomer service rep at the C.all Center I work at, jobs were not very stable. I had just been transferred twice because two accounts had been closed, and I had been passed up for promotions more times than I'd like to count. At the time, I was busy doing cold calls to promote c.redit cards (which I HATED) and I wasn't doing too well, since selling something I don't appreciate myself is not my forte. I was nervous I was going to lose my job, and having just closed on a house, I couldn't afford to be laid off.

To top that all off, I was scraping money together to be able to put in the kitchen, the closets and the protective fence and bars. I was also having problems with my gf of the time, and I felt like our nearly 4 year relationship was faltering badly.

I was extremely stressed, I wasn't sleeping right. Not even sleeping pills helped, either prescription or non-prescription ones. My g.astritis and my irritable b.owel syndrome weren't helping either.

I had been having these weird dreams. They generally were of me walking down the street, and then for some reason or another, I would start to pedal my legs and I would start rising from the ground, and as long as I kept pedaling, I kept flying. They tended to be very real. Now, I had had these dreams before, periodically, especially in periods of my life where I was feeling overwhelmed, but they usually happened every year or so. I was having them almost every night.

One day, after I left work and was walking to the bus stop, I simply lost my grip on reality. I was standing at the crosswalk waiting for the light to change, and I began to feel that I could simply start to pedal my legs and I could fly over the passing cars to get to the bus stop faster. I started to walk into traffic, and if it hadn't been for someone who grabbed my arm and stopped me, I would have walked right into traffic at rush hour and been badly hurt.

I can't remember a lot after that. The next thing I remember was my gf taking me to the ER because I couldn't stop crying. I don't know if I walked to her work after this happened, or if I got home and it happened afterwards. All I know is that I was in the ER, being looked at by a psychiatrist. He prescribed a lot of pills, most of which made me very sleepy. I remember having to take d.iazepam, c.lonazepam and z.oloft. After a few days, since I couldn't function at work, I just kept taking the z.oloft exclusively.

I couldn't believe the change. I felt normal again. It's hard to describe. I felt stable. Like the difference between riding a rollercoaster and switching to It's a s.mall world. I finally felt like I could handle my life again.

I didn't like to take pills, however, and after I finished a month of treatment, I stopped them. I felt fine, so I didn't think I'd need them anymore. My dad's a doctor, and he always instilled in me the idea that psychiatry and psychology were a load of bull, and that only real nutcases need it. Do I still believe that? Hell no, but at the time I was only 25 and had never had any experience with mental disorders (that I could recognize at the time).

I was fine for a while. I felt ok, was doing good. All my economic problems were resolved (for the time), my relationship had improved and I had finally gotten the promotion I had been seeking for a very long time. Life seemed to be going very good, and I was back on track.

So there you have it... That was the first one.

I will tell you about the second one, but that will be for another day.