I’ve been totally consumed by my anxiety and physical distress over the last week which left me in a state of mental confusion, emotional numbness and unable to concentrate on much. The build up of overwhelm finally got to be too much and by late Saturday night into early Sunday morning I broke down, sobbing uncontrollably. It was a very welcomed and much needed release for me.
Since my treatment took place I’ve been struggling alot, feeling deeply concerned and frustrated. I put a lot of pressure on myself and made way too many unrealistic expectations going into my treatment and the weight of it all was starting to crush me which is why I was very much looking forward to having the opportunity to meet with my team of doctors on Saturday morning. Very few people can truly understand what I’ve just gone through, but they can.
The call lasted for over two hours (on Zoom). They helped put my mind at ease as they believe that the physical reactions I’ve endured all week have been mostly due in part to a “psychological shakeup”, although they did seem a bit more concerned about my chest pains and brain zap symptoms (the chest pains have subsided). What I needed most from our meeting was some clarity as to where we go from here and what is expected of me at this point in my treatment going forward.
They also relieved my worry that in no way, shape or form was I supposed to believe that I should be better within my first week and that the initial treatment was just the first of many steps upwards. They also discussed the type of therapy they feel would best suit my needs right now in order for me to reach my goals; and then they dropped a bomb on me at the end of our call. They let me know that their part in the study was now over because their role as my caretakers was purely for intake purposes, day of treatment protocols and follow up in the first week. I was completely caught off guard with this news as I had assumed that I’d be working with them for the remainder of the study so that they can continue to guide me through as well as monitor and collect data on my progress from start to finish; I was never told otherwise and I was still within the belief that they are part of a very small and elite group of people who truly understand what I need in order for this treatment to succeed.
But moving forward now over the course of the next 5 months or so I am only to meet with the nurse from the clinic on a regular basis to do bloodwork, cognitive studies and answer weekly questionnaires (some in person and some online) about any changes in my mood. I will also continue to meet with my Psychiatrist every few weeks as well as with my own therapist whom I already see weekly anyways, taking with me my notes I took Saturday during our call on how they would like me to proceed from here.
I’m having a really hard time making sense of all this right now and the last thing I want is to find myself trying to climb to the top of any mountain without taking the proper steps or safety precautions needed in order to help get me there. And the last, LAST thing I want is for the research team to ask me to partake in another treatment again in a couple of months from now which going into the trial I knew could be a possibility.
But for now I will continue to take all the necessary steps, one by one, that they have asked of me in order to successfully climb to the top of that mountain; even if it means losing my footing or grip a few dozens times on the way up. They left me to begin this next leg of my journey by asking me to try and lower some of the expectations I place upon myself, be kinder to myself and to stop trying so hard to not be depressed or wait to feel better but to instead lean right into my emotions by continuing to pursue avenues that add meaning and value to my life in order to find a life worth living.
The release of my emotions this weekend that had been tucked so deep inside me this past week was a good thing but was it enough to lift the blockades because I still can’t help but wonder, did I finally make a breakthrough this weekend or did I just break further?
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