So, its the New Year…

I’m back to my musical titles (Deathcab for Cutie anyone?). I went away for a while – I needed to, I needed to get my shit in order.  Have I done that?  Well, its still a work in process for sure.  But I’m definitely working on things and on the whole things are very positive at this point in my life.

The holidays were horrible this year, being our first without mom.  And my depression in November and December was peaking.  A miracle happened and I was able to get in to see my psych and she upped my Wellbutrin dose which has definitely helped.  I realized something during that process though.  I learned this, that I was managing my depression solely by my medication, not playing an active role in managing it myself.  I was completely reliant on my pills, and while I’m a strong advocate for medication when its necessary, this was the first time that I’d had a real “breakthrough” in understanding that popping these things in the AM and PM wasn’t all I needed to be doing.  I was being lazy.

This realization has forced my hand in a lot of things this year.  I’ve realized how much better I really feel when I’m exercising somewhat regularly. It’s not quite a habit yet but I’m on that path.  I also know that I was eating too much sugar (and other not good for me foods) so I’ve started being more aware of what I’m eating, tracking and focused on whole, better for me foods.  I’ve also realized that a journal may actually be a good thing for me.  My friend had given me one (its more of a structured journal) and I just re-discovered it under piles – so I’ve started that as well.  All of this is good and good for me, and I’m hoping I’ll see this net out in my mental health.

I still feel a little stuck in some ways – while I’m not a full time caregiver for Dad, there are a lot more things that I do for him than I did before.   This house is much too big for him and its upkeep is a challenge.  At this point he’s not even open to the idea of moving (he doesn’t like change at all and here he’ll stay until he physically/mentally cannot anymore.).  I’ve been looking for a full-time job in earnest – consulting, while I have wonderful clients, is difficult when you’re solo.  And I’ve realized I sincerely miss being a part of a team, contributing, collaborating.  I’ve had some positive feedback, so I’m hopeful that something will materialize sooner rather than later (any crossed fingers, good juju or prayers would be appreciated!). But I’ve focused my job search mostly in local areas as I don’t want to be too far from him.  I know that’s not the best thing for me,  but its a compromise I need to make right now.

Have any of you had the same realization occur?  What have been your go to’s for helping you manage your mental health?