I need to relearn how to live my life

I've been taking Lexapro for a year. For those not familiar with the drug, it's an antidepressant. I wasn't taking it for depression but anxiety. You know, come to think of it, I wasn't really taking it for that, either. I have anger issues.

My issues stem from the fact that I can anger quite easily, going from zero to @#$%^ in a .5 seconds. And that anger was primarily as a result of stressors that I encountered at home. Strangely, I could deal with work stress, even relishing in it and performing better. But I couldn't do that at home.

I think I inherited this from my mother. I know it wasn't from my dad. He was frustratingly laid back, and it would take A LOT to get that man angry. As a child I was deathly afraid of angering my mother. Not that I was ever abused as a child, but I was scared of her temper. I learned what rage look like at an early age.

Now as a mother myself, I refuse to allow my children to bear witness to my own inner rage. When I could see that I was having an extreme difficulty in controlling my temper with two small children, I wrestled with going to my doctor to ask for help. I was terrified that once I talked to my doctor that he would somehow have my girls taken from me. Note: I have never beat on my kids. Never never never. Ok. Now that THAT'S cleared up...

So I went to the doctor, holding my breath. And then I exhaled. I got a prescription for Lexapro and found that I didn't feel like I was walking along that same cliff, threatening to fall (or jump?) off of it. I could deal with stressors in a rational way, and I never felt that snap that put me over the edge. I still got angy, sure, but it was rational. I never blew up and regretted anything I said to anyone.

And then my prescription ran out. A couple of weeks ago I dialed up the pharmacy to have it refilled and they informed me that they would need my Dr's okay first. Sure, I said, no problem.

Only he was on vacation for a week. By the time the attending doctor authorized five pills to "tide me over" till my doctor got back I had been off of the drug for over a week. In that time I had neat little headaches, a persistant brain fog, and a perpetual sense of vertigo that was made intense every time I got up and walked around. In short, that week was hell.

During that time I decided to come off of the drug completely, hoping that in the last year I will have learned ways to deal with stress. Granted, I have had a couple of moments where my inner rage decided to sneek out, curious as to what it had missed in the last year. Overall, though, I can see that my physical withdrawl symptoms are abating and that I'm trying to hold on to the medicated rationality.

I had a doctor's appointment today. I told him of my decision to come off of the drug, and he supported me. He did, however, give me some samples of Lexapro in the event that something major goes down and I feel like I can't cope. I'm okay with this; having the samples handy is much like carrying around an unopened pack of cigarettes after I quit cold turkey when I found out that I was pregnant with Emily. I was reassured by their presence, knowing if it got that bad that I wouldn't have to "suffer" a craving. And I never opened them.

I'm hoping that those samples stay unopened, too.

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