Three weeks ago, I plucked up the courage to call my new doctor about my mental health. On Saturday, I finally had my appointment.
On Friday night, I barely slept. I was filled with nervousness and dread. On Saturday morning, I woke up long before my alarm and lay in bed waiting for it. When it finally went off, I crept around the house getting ready, careful not to wake the family. I got about halfway to the doctor’s surgery before I seriously considered turning around and going back to bed to hide. I kept walking. I was there about ten minutes early for my appointment and sat in the over-hot waiting room with my heart thundering in my chest. I thought about getting up and leaving. I watched the doctor arrive, walking in and out of his office for a few minutes sorting things out. It felt like an age before the notice flashed up telling me I could go in.
I sat down in the doctor’s office and it took me a minute or two to actually speak. I tried a few times and all that came out was shaky nonsense. The doctor was incredibly patient and waited for me to calm down a bit, then asked questions and prompted me which made it a lot easier to talk about everything. As the appointment went on, I felt more relaxed and able to talk. The doctor was listening. He was taking me seriously. He wasn’t going to tell me it wasn’t that bad, or that he couldn’t do anything. He actually wanted to help me. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Eventually I cried. The doctor didn’t mind.
He said I should try some anti-depressants, so we went through his medicine guide to look at which one would be best for me. He was understanding of the fact that I don’t want to stop breast feeding Turtle, so we found one that wouldn’t cause her harm. It was such a dramatically different appointment to the ones I had with my previous doctor. This doctor was patient, understanding, and took my thoughts on my illness and treatment into account. I didn’t feel at all upset, belittled, or crazy. I have to go back for another appointment in two weeks time, and I’m not nervous at all. Actually, seeing the doctor again is something I’m happy about. It’s reassuring to know that I’ll be able to discuss anything that I want to, and that I have support there if I need it.
I’ve been on my new medication for a few days now, and have had some of the most common side effects – nausea, some anxiety – but nothing too difficult to deal with. I’m feeling less nauseous today than yesterday, so that’s good. Today I have cleaned most of the kitchen, done some laundry, and enjoyed reading in the conservatory while the children played outside. I know I’m not going to recover overnight, but right now I’m feeling positive. I’ve got some help, and that’s taken a weight off my shoulders. I feel like I can get better, one step at a time.