Posted: July 17, 2011 in medication, weight loss

I know I need to get back on top of this whole blogging thing. For me. Because I think it’s healthy to write about things. It has been a VERY stressful last couple of weeks.

I stopped taking Effexor. After three years, the withdrawals were crazy intense. I was expecting things to get interesting as I phased off the medication, but I don’t think I was prepared for how intense the withdrawal symptoms were going to be. I felt everything from flu-like aches that lasted for days to jitters and shakes, fevers, cold sweats, severe dizziness and lack of energy to nausea and depression. By day 4 of no medication in the system, I was experiencing random bouts of crying for absolutely no reason.

That culminated in an explosive (no pun intended) all-out fight with boyfriend following the 4th of July fireworks show we attended. I had a panic attack, for the first time in over four years, and it was absolutely TERRIFYING experiencing a panic attack while coming off of the medication that I started taking to stop having panic attacks in the first place. After a few more days of essentially balling up on the couch, things started getting better, and I think I’m finally through the worst of the symptoms. I still feel a little light-headed when I stand up, but other than that I feel almost…normal?

Being able to go about my daily life and not have severe, debilitating anxiety attacks is pretty amazing. My band had a performance last Saturday that didn’t go as well as I might have hoped, but it was good to learn that I could get through that and be totally fine. I wasn’t even nervous when I went on stage, and for someone who was terrified at the thought of singing karaoke a year ago, that’s a pretty huge step. Doing it without medication? Even better.

I’ve been pretty good about keeping up with my diet and exercise too, and I’ve been enjoying testing out healthy new recipes in my kitchen with fresh ingredients I pick up at the farmer’s market on Saturday mornings. Saturday mornings are also time that I get to spend with a good friend, and that in and of itself is a huge, positive step, and a case study in how far I’ve come. When I met this particular friend, I really didn’t have a lot of friends. My therapist had been encouraging me to try to meet new people outside of my department, so I poked around on myspace half-heartedly for a while and stumbled onto a profile for a grad student who also loved the Deadliest Catch and was looking to meet new people. We chatted on myspace for a few days (bonus points to her for rolling with this and not thinking I was totally creepy) and eventually met up for coffee. I embrace all the cliches here when I say it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship. It’s pretty amazing to think about how far I’ve really come in the last year, isn’t it Ladypants?

Here, a glimpse at some of the healthy yummies I’ve been experimenting with:

One of my all time favorite salads - mixed greens, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and a little bleu cheese with fat free raspberry vinigarette.

Fingerling potatoes, corn on the cob, and baked tilapia. Delicious.

Baby beets and carrots with fresh cilantro and pomegranate basalmic vinegar. I added beet greens at the end for extra flavor. Yummy!

  1. Aww Lady! I LOVE our Saturday mornings together! It’s soooo much more fun than going by myself! I love your food! It looks sooo yummy! 🙂

  2. We are pretty much just awesome. 🙂 One of these days I will cook you some samples of deliciousness!

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