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To Medicate or Not Medicate, THAT is the Question!

Kelley McElreath Anti-depressants anxiety attempted suicide survivor Depression manic depression Medication Mental Health PTSD Sadness

“Surviving isn't around us, but in us.”
~Shannon Alder
I wish I could remember the exact date I stopped taking my anti-depressants. I know it has been somewhere between 4 - 5 months total. This is my fourth time attempting this over the past 4 years. So I guess I try it once a year roughly. The first 8-10 weeks or so are always fantastic! Everything goes so smoothly and I feel fine for the most part. I did a podcast where I talk about coming off medication and you can listen to it here, . Week 12 comes along and oh...my...goodness!! I feel like I am falling apart, I am on the verge of tears, I have a hard time keeping it together, on and on and on. 
When it started this time, I knew immediately what it was. I didn't want to give up yet. It was far too early in the game to quit and go right back on the medicines. I knew that I had to dig into my bag of tricks. The tips and tricks that I use with those that I help. This has been going on for about three weeks. Mondays have ALWAYS been so hard for me. So, this is the third Monday in a row that has been really difficult. Although I feel like I would never, EVER attempt to take my life again, I do find myself having those thoughts. Don't worry, they are not out of control and are only passing, fleeting thoughts. But today, I realized that while they are still passing thoughts, my mindset was ALL wrong. I was thinking such negative thoughts of worry. I noticed all my thoughts contained NO hope. I was thinking about my life falling apart and seeing no end in sight. 
Luckily, I had already scheduled to be a guest on a podcast at 10:00 am. In the hour leading up to the scheduled time, I wanted desperately to cancel. But, I am not like that as I almost always stick to my word unless there is a complete emergency which would about have to be something life threatening. It was 9:56 and I was in tears. I just kept telling myself that falling apart just wasn't in my list of options. So, I literally just said to myself that I had to suck it up and pull my shit together because that was my only choice. I did just that and the podcast went great. 
Now, the podcast is over and the dark cloud has lifted. I believe that this is a really great tool to use. If we have something scheduled regularly that we are obligated to, it is just another thing to keep us going in the right direction. It is so easy to just stay under the covers and not face the world. That isn't such a bad thing on some days but we can't let ourselves have too many of those. Taking action is a huge part of surviving. 
How do you survive? What are some things that you do personally that help YOU survive?

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