Friday, July 27, 2012

Life with Cipralex

So my hands and creativity have been VERY busy this month. If you want to know why, this post on my digital scrapbooking blog will tell you. LOL.

Keeping my mind and hands busy has always been an important aspect of keeping the most severe symptoms of anxiety and depression at bay. When I first started digi-scrapping, it was the latter half of 2009 and I was stuck in Virginia, 800 miles away from my husband and everything I had so quickly come to love in Canada. My father was very ill all the way up until we lost him that December. I'm pretty sure that digi-scrapping and the wonderful girls at DSP and STS were the only things keeping me sane.

Cipralex is still working quite well. I don't think I had realized how great 15mg was at the time because there was just too much environmental stress and depression going on with both Trevor and I not having jobs. My GP increased my dosage to 20mg last month, but for five days straight I was experiencing such severe mood swings and suicidal thoughts that I dropped back to 15. And then I was fine.

I saw my GP on Monday and told him about it, and he said I definitely did the right thing. He said I really should have dropped to 10mg, my original dosage, but he was glad that I was feeling a lot better and that the environmental stressors had all but disappeared since Trevor acquired a full-time job.

I'm still doing things that I had found utterly impossible to do at this time last year, a month before I was put on Cipralex. Last summer I was still nervous, awkward, and kept to myself at get-togethers. I couldn't pick up the phone. I could hardly look anyone in the eye. The thought of going anywhere alone or taking public transit alone freaked me out so bad that I would launch myself right into a panic attack. I remember Kent once remarking at how surprised he was at how social and comfortable I became at gatherings when I had a drink or two in me.

This year? Well. I don't need alcohol to be comfortable and social. I jump on the bus whenever I feel like it. I'll even be taking the subway alone to the Eaton Centre or to the new Michael's that's opened up by the North York Centre. I can go up to a counter and order a double double with complete ease. I go on my own to my doctor appointments, another trigger for severe anxiety for me, and not feel a smidgen of fear.

I'm feeling... well... somewhat normal.

Of course, it's not the medication by itself. I feel that one has to mentally and emotionally work WITH the meds to make them work to their optimum, and boy have I been working hard this past year. To feel that I can now go just about anywhere on public transit or on foot and not panic about it is a very liberating thing. I think I'm finally breaking away from my codependency issues with my husband.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Accessory Post #1!

I'm a girl who's obsessed with accessories, and even more so now that I'm FINALLY developing a sense of style (I haven't possessed style since I was thin; I'm pretty overweight right now, even though I'm losing pounds, and I've been too ashamed of my body to dress it nicely). This is going to be the first of many posts showing off fun accessories I've acquired!

Ardene, a Canadian store that's quite similar to Claire's (which we also have here), has these really neat "surprise bags" that are 2 for $5. Each bag contains five pieces of jewellery or hair accessories. They also have 2 for $8 surprise bags that have tank tops, scarves, etc. in them, but right now I prefer the smaller bags!

Contents of Surprise Bags from July 11th:

The two necklaces, which are from Ardene's Glam line, are SO dang pretty! I need to hang them and photograph them again because they just don't look right here. The lip glosses are nice and shimmery, with subtle scents; the darker pink smells like strawberries. They're really sticky, but they're great to throw in my purse and touch up my lips.

Contents of Surprise Bags from July 12th:

The only thing I don't like about surprise bags is the hairties I so frequently get, but that's only because my hair is too short for them! I just pass them on to friends with longer hair :) The two black & white things on the far left are sunglasses cords, which I'm not sure I'll use! I love how both bags coincidentally have a black & white theme going on!

Ardene also had hair accessories 5 for $10, so I picked up some hair flowers.

They add some brightness to my current collection of hair flowers...

I think I'll start posting my style looks every now and then. I think it will motivate me to stop being lazy and dress more nicely!

In other news... it's my birthday weekend! Wow!! Saturday we're heading to a festival on Bloor and possibly the Stoufville Country Market, so I should really get to bed and get some sleep. Night!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Life and Canada Day

Happy July, y'all! Sorry for my lack of updating. I'm not a very good blogger.

Speaking of blogs, I don't like how all of mine are separate, yanno? I have this one, a makeup/fashion one, a digital scrapbooking one, and I was considering a whole new one for weight loss. I can't seem to keep up with them. So my solution is to make this an everything blog and include fashion, makeup fun, and my weight loss journey on Sweet Maple Life, and get rid of my other blogs (except the digital scrapbooking one, which will still stand on its own).

Time to play catch up! To celebrate my second Canada Day as a permanent resident, we went to our friend Jeff's hometown of Glen Williams for their patriotic parade. We sat on the curb of the bridge that spans the Credit River, and after the parade was done, we explored the festivities, had tiger tail ice cream (thanks Jeff!), and Geocached. Then we drove to Missisauga for their ribfest!

Here's a little bit about Glen Williams: click!

Now... on to some pics!

My Canada nails!

The Geocache we found, bringing Elisa's (my MIL) total of discovered/logged caches to 8 and mine to 7!

I couldn't resist buying some really cute jewellery at the Canada Day parade booths. The pink star necklace was a dollar, the blue heart bracelet and necklace came as a set for $2, and the rose pendant was $8.

Here I am in my appropo red and white, posed in front of nail polish. Elisa and I have a bad habit of discovering the nail polish WHENEVER we go ANYWHERE with Jeff, so he just had to take a picture.

Driving through Ontario farmland to Missisauga...

Mmm, ribfest.

We were so tired after we got home that Trevor and I zonked out for several hours and slept through any local fireworks that we might have gone out to see. Oops. :)

The 4th was my nephew Gage's fifth birthday. The vicious derecho that swept through the Great Lakes and mid-Atlantic whalloped Virginia, knocking out power everywhere. Gage did get to go see fireworks, at least! I really miss that kid. He's my little buddy who is quickly growing up.

On the 9th, my mom went under the knife for a triple bypass. It was a very risky operation because her health and heart had deteriorated rapidly, and they discovered a faulty valve and had to repair that, but she came through it and they were able to remove the ventilator yesterday afternoon! They were concerned that it would be difficult to get her off the vent, as she has emphysema on top of everything else. I'm being updated frequently by my sister and I'm so very happy to know how well Mom is progressing. It's a near miracle.

Well, that's all for now. More soon, my friends! *hugs and light*