Monday, October 13, 2008

Melancholy and Mood Swings

Just after dinner this evening I got a phone call from my sister. We were in the middle of talking about the struggle I am having with mood swings and a melancholy state of mind. She had to get off the phone for another phone call and I decided to check my email. I got an email from my dad that was meant to be in good humor about us wallpapering our walls. However, I took it very personal and immediately sent him a ranting email about how rude he was and how I just wasn't in a state of mind that I could just brush off the rudeness... Case and Point!:)

I have always struggled with mood swings and anxiety. I have also been weighed down by depression at times throughout my life's journey. I have never met with a professional psychiatrist. Although, I have been prescribed antidepressants by a medical doctor. The doctor prescribed Paxil for me while I was in college. I used this until I found out that it could have adverse side effects during pregnancy. I then switched to Zoloft. I've switched back and forth between the two throughout the last four years.

After I gave birth to Caleb (6 months ago) I decided I wanted to apply all of the nutritional knowledge that I have gained to my life to find out if I could heal my emotional and mental struggles nutritionally. Well, it's been six months and I have progressed leaps and bounds. I have lost over 30 pounds, I have the pain that radiates throughout my body at a barely noticeable minimum, and physically I feel very good! BUT, I haven't conquered the melancholy. I call it melancholy because that is exactly how I feel. I tried to put how I feel down on paper the other day. This is what I came up with:

"A thoughtful or gentle sadness, the gloomy character of somebody, pensive sadness, thinking deeply about something, especially in a sad or serious manner." -Encarta Dictionary

I Can find cheer at times during the day. But I am in a state of melancholy most of the day. Sunshine and music alleviate it some… lack of ability to concentrate at times. Frequent deep thinking and reflecting… strange anxiety about relationships… Living in a fogged state of mind filled with dull or creative writing/self analytical thoughts, unless jogged out of it by conversation or demanding responsibilities -AND/OR- fatigued, feeling like a ticking time bomb ready to go off. When it does, I lash out at Jakob or Leif.

I share these thoughts and let people in to my world for a couple of reasons , 1. this blog is for my future posterity and things like this are important to know. 2. my experiences and feelings are not all that original. I hope that my experiences give others strength.

As for solving my struggles, I feel that I have a choice to make. Because I am able to function and am not in a state of deep depression, I could just choose to live my life the way it is and try to apply stress management techniques and continue to pray. OR, I could choose to use prescribed medication, apply stress management techniques, and continue to pray. Most likely, I will end up using a low dose mild antidepressant. I feel that I am capable of functioning and living in a happier more pleasant state of being. I need to find that place!


Heidi Hamilton said...

Hey Lena! Your post made me think SO much of my mom's new book - From Darkness to Light. She has so many good ideas about overcoming depressions or just bad days.
There's a link on or you can e-mail her at She'd LOVE to give you some great ideas!

Lena Baron said...

Thanks Heidi, I am actually planning on buying the book this week. I look forward to it!

Steph said...

Hey Lena, I'm so glad that you expressed this and I'd like to talk more about this but in a more private setting. I totally believe that this is a true battle that people face and it's one of the hardest ones to conquer and I think it's so great to have a combination of remedies to try and overcome it. Anyway, if you want, email me at, I'd love to get some personal feedback from you about it!

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