I have been in the worst funk...Can't seem to shake it!

reno_fanJanuary 27, 2006

I'm normally an "I Love Lucy", wide-eyed wonder, fun-loving kinda person. But for the last week I've been in SUCH a funk. Food doesn't taste good (though that hasn't stopped me from eating my own weight daily...), my favorite shows don't hold my interest, projects (that normally get me all fired up) overwhelm me, and I just want to sleep.

I'm baffled. Nothing is wrong. I have nothing to complain about. Yet I just feel so *vacant*.

I had one bad day last week, and it's just spiraled from there. Ugh. Not even chocolate has helped. (Though I keep trying and trying and trying...)I feel like an utter failure/loser/poser/fraud/wimp. Probably because I shoot first and ask questions later, and jump headlong into things that I don't realize will tax me.

I suppose I just needed to vent. Thanks for bending your virtual ears.

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In 1994, I started to feel just like you do now. Nothing was wrong, In fact everything was good! Happy marriage, great kid, no money issues. I just couldn't shake this depression. In 1992, following a stroke at age 31, I had intense Psychological therapy and I was seeing an internist 4+ times a year.

After a few weeks of a very bad downward spiral, crying all the time, agraphobia, not sleeping, borderline suicidal thoughts, I saw my doctor.

Do you know 25% of all women suffer from chemical depression
at some point in their lives? I agreed to try medication(Zoloft) and after a week, I felt better and after a month, I was back to my same old cheery self.

I've been taking it since 1994.

Everybody has a bad week now and then, We all do. BUT if you feel worse after two weeks, consider seeing a doctor.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 6:17PM
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I know that you know this, but we all have those days and weeks that seem like you're trapped in a pit. Ugh! Tell me, what were the first few things that went wrong and are they still there? Can you do any sort of reprioritizing/damage control and get rid of the things that are bogging you down? Just do them or set them aside with a specific point in time to take control? Is there someone you might owe an apology to? Can your husband carry the load tomorrow so you can have a day to yourself to get back on track? Anyway, I had this kind of noenergy/no progress/down sort of week too, and what helps is just working hard to get through the muck. Try not to get sidetracked. Get plenty of sleep tonight. Tomorrow is a new day. And if all else fails, remember all of those good things you have to be thankful for. I'll be thinking of you....

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 6:27PM
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Oh Reno...you're probably okay. I have "stages" like this too. Have you tried a good workout? I know it sounds silly, but these really help me when I get in a funk. Gets the juices going in a positive direction again.

Counting your blessings always helps too.

And venting is a VERY good thing!

Feel better,

P.S. I'm going through it right now, and should really take my own advice!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 6:45PM
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Hi Reno,

A couple of years ago I was in the dumps and tired all the time. It was winter. My DH bought me a full spectrum light from a medical supply store. I think I was suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). I sat in front of the light every morning for about 15 minuts while I had my morning coffee and read the news. It was heplful for me. Might be worth a try.
Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 9:03PM
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reno, I have had bouts like this quite often this winter, and I've never been prone to such things before. In my case I believe it is hormonal and has to do with impending menopause, though I can't tell how close I might be to that. I have annoying things going on that don't help, like the inability to remember names (I'm talking about people I've known for years) and the feeling that I'm not quite in the here and now. Worst of all, my temper is on a very, very short fuse these days, and I've never even HAD much of a temper before. I've been self medicating with coffee but it is a very mediocre remedy.

Anyway, I have an appointment for a pap/annual on Mon. (which I've put off for 2 1/2 years) and plan to discuss it with my gyn.

Hope you pull out of your funk soon! Good luck!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 10:18PM
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I could have written seeking's post. I feel the same way and I think it is also related to perimenopause and having twins and being constantly exhausted.

OTOH, I went through a very serious depression when I was about 22, after finishing college and a failed engagement. I felt a lot like you describe reno. Back then, all they had was horrid antidepressants, with lots of side effects and interactions with foods, etc.

I just toughed it out. Dark days indeed.

NO need to do that now with the improvements that have been made. If you don't feel better soon, please see your health care provider. Please tell us how you feel in a few days.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:18PM
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Hey Steph, glad you're here, regardless of your mood. You were so "up" the last time you posted.

I don't know how old you are but is it possible you're in menopause? I've always been "Little Mary Sunshine" but since menopause started my moods hae been...unpredictable.

Also, since it's winter SAD "springs" to mind immediately.

I hope you feel better soon. Go see the doc and have a conversation about your feelings. Just like going to the doc for a physical problem you'll probably feel better just knowing you're being proactive about your health.

And keep us posted, please?

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:28PM
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Stephanie, you've been through so much in the past year! Now that things have finally settled down, it seems so unfair that an indefinable "something" comes along and puts you in a funk. I agree that it might be hormonal. Or it might be a sign of illness or a reaction to medication. Or maybe the issue that caused your "bad day" last week is still unresolved and troubling you subconsciously.

If you continue to feel this way and no explanation becomes apparent, it's worth a doctor visit to rule out any physical or emotional factors. I hope you feel better soon!



    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:34PM
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Hi Stephanie,
Now that my kitchen is done I've been only occasionally 'luking' here. You and I "spoke" months ago when I needed advise and was loving your kitchen. I have enjoyed your posts, and "see" you as an up and energetic type. This may not help, but had to respond. I felt so much the way you do now when I was going full blown into menopause : sad and rather numb. I went on HRT and it was almost as though my "on" button had been reactivated...I was ME again! Ever since then I've felt that I got a small, brief glance into the world of clinical depression. Because of all the negative study results, I switched to a much lower dose, with good results. This may not be your problem, but whatever it may be, do not hesitate very long to get advice from your physician. Though I only take meds when absolutely required, I do believe in "better living through chemistry"..:>) by that I mean NOT suffering needlessly. Trust your gut feeling. Even in this 'not yourself' state you KNOW yourself best. See your doctor. We'll be rooting for you. hugs, leahcate

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 2:48AM
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I like Ivette's suggestion of exercise. Releases endorphins and all that.

I'm pretty sure Steph is in her early-mid thirties?, so it would be unlikely to be menopause if that were the case. I would look at the situation that triggered this episode. It seems to be something unresolved for you? Maybe give it a week and then make an appointment with a good (get referrals) therapist to discuss it. If that doesn't work, an appointment with your physician is in order.

Another thing to consider is that you have spent the past year dealing with crises, and you have risen to the occasion as parents and spouses so often are called upon to do. It could be that you are only now having the chance to deal with your own emotions with respect to these issues, after having been everyone else's caretaker. Again, therapy can be really helpful to work through this.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:12AM
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Wow, I sign off to go to bed, and come back to so many friendly and helpful "faces"! Thank you all.

Paige is right; I'm 32. But hormones could be to blame. My doc says about this age, hormones can really flip flop.

Several years ago, I was diagnosed with clinical depression and was on medication for several months. That episode was triggered by very tangible life events, however, and as soon as the events changed I was "old me" again. (The anti-depressants were a godsend, though. Enabled me to *live* and not just exist until I felt better.)

I'll do some reading on SAD. (I suppose the light from CRT looking at forums in the morning isn't quite the same thing as the special lights, huh? ;) )

Last week I had a HORRID open house. (As some of you may remember, looking at buying another house led to my starting a career in real estate.) It was just awful. I felt like the biggest phony, and I couldn't seem to put 2 words together intelligently. The more I muddled, the worse it got, and I just felt like such a fool. At one point someone asked me the *square footage* of the home, and I just blanked. Hemmed and hawwed until I was able to drag my carcass over to the spec sheet and READ IT OFF OF THAT! And this was like my 20th open house! I'm quite comfortable and normally proficient when doing those. I just was totally thrown that day. Just one of those days when you wish you could rewind and start over. To make matters worse, my partner and I got our signals crossed and she was supposed to be at the house I was sitting, and I was to be at another house. But since I'd already opened the house and gotten it ready, she just darted over to the other house. Where she sold it. And picked up 4 new clients. Sigh. I know thems are the breaks in this business, but my horrid self-doubting day combined with her success made me just want to sit down and cry.

DH says that I do this all the time, only to lesser degrees. I have grand ideas of my own abilities, and then if I fall short at all, even briefly, I get all twisted out of shape. That's probably what this is. But it just has to end. I can't keep faking it, you know? It's very exhausting to *act* like you feel fine and *act* like you have even a modicum of self confidence when it's all shaken up.

If it doesn't lift in the next week, I'll talk to my doc about the wonder pills that I took before.

Thanks again for letting me vent and all the caring suggestions.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:58AM
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Oh, honey. Come over to Aunt Pecan's house and she will feed you pound cake and love on you. Bless your heart.

You have had one hell of a year. Get exercise, walk in the sunshine as much as you can, and get yourself to the doctor ASAP. And don't let them tell you that your hormones are 'low but in the normal range.' Make sure they are looking at YOU and not NUMBERS. My doctor dismissed my mood swings, deep funk and night sweats for years because my bloodwork was 'low but normal' and she never thought of menopause because I was only 34.

Please make that phone call on Monday.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 11:18AM
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The symptoms you're describing are indeed symptoms of depression. Depression can be triggered by identifiable events, as your previous episode was, but it doesn't have to be. If you feel this way for say, a week longer, definitely see your health care provider. Meantime, the exercise suggestion is a great one. Also, make sure you're eating a well-balanced diet with lots of fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and plenty of water.

Having said that, there's something else I'd like to sugggest to you: a shift in perspective. You say you have grand ideas of your own abilities, you shoot first and ask questions later, you fake it. I think this is GREAT! People who always operate within their comfort zone deny themselves the opportunity to learn and grow. I think people who are truly successful never feel fully prepared for what they undertake, but they do it anyway, they fake it. Confidence is gained by acting like you have it even when you don't. Sometimes things don't turn out the way you'd like, but the "failures" are never really failures if you learn from them. People who never fail are not pushing themselves hard enough. Since I'm a corny epigram kind of gal, here's one I keep posted in my office: "Go out on a limb; it's where the fruit is."

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:14PM
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Oh dear! Selling real estate can do it to you. Although there were some things about real estate I loved, the one thing that always bothered me was that I became totally jealous and obsessed with other salespeoples' good fortune. It's the primary reason I left real estate. I just hated the feelings I had and didn't recognize myself (because I am totally not like that). For example, if I was scheduled for floor time at 3pm and the salesperson before me got a call at 2:45 to show a house to show a house (and then subsequently gained a client or sold the house), I would get depressed for days. It was jealousy, plain and simple. And I hated myself for it. It was just too competitive to be healthy. Could it be that the intense competition of real estate is causing your problem?

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:23PM
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Oh, Reno, I know just how you feel. I often feel like I'm faking it in my job (attorney). A few months ago, I failed to catch a clerical error in a document that was filed with the court, and it was a big deal. It wasn't something completely obvious, and it was someone else's actual error, but it was something I should have noticed. Believe it or not, because of the hypertechnical approach of the law, it could get the case dismissed. I went into an immediate funk, thought I was the biggest loser attorney ever, and just generally lost my self-confidence. I'm still recovering, but a few months later I feel much better. It was just a bad day, stupid mistake, and not the defining moment in my career. It just felt like it was at the time.

This too shall pass. You're not a fake, not a poser, you deserve this job, it's perfect for you, you will do great.

I wish I could take antidepressants sometimes. They just make me way too keyed up.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 10:37PM
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The 3 things that make me feel better when I'm down....brush my teeth, turn on my music and excercise. Make yourself do it!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 2:18AM
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Jerzee, I really thought about what you posted. I asked myself if I honestly was just jealous of her success. I don't think I'm jealous of her success per se, but rather her success made me question my own abilities. She's a top producer at our office, and I'm lucky to have her as a partner; she's helped me immensely and throws lots of leads and deals my way. I just got home after that day and found myself thinking, "What is WRONG with me?" Like PaigeCT, I was thinking "I *should have* done this-or-that. A "proficient" individual would have done fill_in_the_blank..."

I believe that's the root of the whole thing. Her success juxtaposed with my horribly bad open house made me question my own abilities, and made me think that I'd made a mistake, I'd never get it right, I'd screwed everything up, etc. While I know those aren't rational, that's where I was. (Poor DH, when I got home and he asked me how it went, I screamed at him, burst into tears and ran back to the bedroom, leaving him standing there with a cookie crumb dangling from his lips and a bewildered and hurt look on his face.)

Fact is, when I'm up, I'm pretty much unstoppable. I don't care what the *facts* are, I can get stuff done. But when my confidence is shaken and I don't believe in myself, the world becomes a very scary place! I just need to chalk that day up for what it was; a learning experience. I need to put on my *big girl pants* and go find someone else to help! (Can you tell I'm beginning to become annoyed with myself? I don't have too much tolerance for being down....)

Paige, THANK YOU for sharing your own experience. I really emphasizes "That's how life is", and it wasn't just me!!

And Susanfnp, I have to say that I've never thought of my "act now---question later" attributes as being GOOD things. I've always considered my impetuous behaviors to be a bad thing, and so I consequently feel guilty about 99% of the time. You really made me realize that I need to have a different perspective! Almost EVERYTHING I do is done without hesitation, and I honestly never looked at that as being a good quality. Just last week, I got the wild hair to remodel a small powder room. One minute I was telling DH that we needed to pick out tile, and then next minute I had the crowbar in my hand removing the old stuff. I felt TOTALLY guilty for 3 days, as I felt like I was "putting everyone out" and not being a good wife, mother, broker, etc. But you know what? That powder room is finished. In 3 days. Why didn't I see that as a good thing before?

Wow. What a catharsis. Nothing like seeing your own mess scrawled in black and white on the WWW for a little introspection!! Honestly, thank you. I really do have a different (and much healthier) perspective.

And Pecan, I would NEVER turn down your pound cake. It's to die for!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 8:32AM
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reno, I have to agree with you, your partner's experience would make my stomach turn for a while too! But then again, take a close look at the actualities of the different houses wrt pricing, staging, etc. and see if maybe the house sold itself and the clients were also entranced by the staging or whatever inherent in the house...I know our house sold itself (we didn't have an agent, that's how I know--and one agent who brought one of the three competing offers said "this house sells itself", if you really need professional confirmation on that :)), and the house we bought sold itself too...the seller's agent almost got in the way, actually...so it could completely have been external circumstances that made this happen, and for some reason it wasn't supposed to be you at that house then.

There's a kids' song on one of my daughter's CDs, sung by an old blues singer, that goes "Take every knock as a boost, every stumbling block as a stepping stone; lift up your head, hold your own, just keep goin' on." I think I've gotten way more out of that song than DD has so far. Sometimes it makes me cry, even. If I could "inject" one perspective into my daughter for her to survive what's ahead of her in this crazy world, it would be that. I hope she's absorbed the lyrics and they'll help her in years to come.

And anyway, now that you're feeling better, would you care to share photos of the bathroom? :) Nothing like a little positive reinforcement to bolster up the ol' confidence...

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 12:24PM
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Another 'silent' cause is sometimes hypothyroidism. You can get a 'normal' reading in the low area and still be thyroid deficient. I was having a lot of the thyroid deficient symptoms (dry skin, hair loss, a muffled sense of sadness, a 15 lb unexplained weight gain that no diet or exercise would budge, some memory issues, etc.). After several rounds of blood tests my doctor finally decided to put me on a low=level thyroid replacement and the results have been wonderful. The sadness was gone within a couple of weeks, skin and hair are improving, weight is slowly coming down. My doctor said that psychiatrists will often treat despression with thyroid replacement since there is such a strong connection. Interesting. Just another thing to consider.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 10:11PM
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karen, did your thyroid tests reveal anything? Or were you low normal?

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 1:06AM
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I was low-normal, which was why my doctor hesitated to treat it. We both feel that a low dose of thyroid was definitely needed, however, once we saw the great results. He said that 30 years ago, doctors prescribed thyroid replacement when the symptoms existed, and didn't rely solely on blood tests. Then it became unacceptable. Now they are beginning to look at it again. I think it is possible that the blood test isn't truly accurate when you get down to the "low-normal" range. At least that's my "theory". I had other signs - an enlarged thyroid, a family history of thyroid disease (mother, sister, aunts), and that helped with the diagnosis as well.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 8:29AM
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You've already gotten so many good responses, I hesitate to add my two cents, but now that people have mentioned the real estate aspect...

During the five years I was an agent, I think I had some serious bouts of depression. The business is pretty crazy-making. There seemed to be no rhyme or reason why someone would end up with a listing, or after working months with a buyer, they'd turn around and buy a house through an agent they met that day at the open house. It was the only job I ever had that had so little direct correlation of how hard I worked with how much I was rewarded. In the end, I realized it wasn't for me. Flyleft made some good points about that particular event, but the truth is, that's the nature of real estate. I remember once losing a $4 million sale because the seller wouldn't sell the buyer a $10,000 rug. If this type of irrationality really gets to you, it's worth paying attention to.

Before I sold real estate, I was always completely confident of my own capabilities. My confidence was seriously shaken after my experience and it truly took me a year or more to get it back after I quit.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 3:34PM
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Just checking in... How did things go this week?

    Bookmark   February 5, 2006 at 1:34PM
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Oh jeez, SO much better. I think it was just fatigue (mental and physical), and it made even small problems seem insurmountable.

Also, Susanfnp wrote something that *really* struck a chord with me about the possibility that my impetuousness might actually be a *good* thing (if honed, of course...) I honestly have always felt guilty about most everything I've started, as I'm never quite proficient enough in my own mind. But Susan's post made me stop and take stock. Now I still may muddle things up, but I've learned to take what I've started, and try to turn it around to "purposeful proficiency".

It's amazing what a bit of perspective can do...and a boat-load of chocolate. ahem....

    Bookmark   February 5, 2006 at 2:54PM
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