Hello again. This is Susan from myketaminestory.com. Welcome to my Ketamine blog for the Boise Ketamine Clinic website. I am excited to have another platform on which to share my experience with Ketamine treatments, in hopes of educating others on the potential this drug has for helping those, like me, with Treatment Resistant Depression (TRD).
As a brief summary for those new to my blog, I write about my experiences and journey with Ketamine Therapy on my personal website, The Injection and Infusion Clinic of Albuquerque, and of course for The Boise Ketamine Clinic. I have a long history with treatment resistant depression and anxiety disorders. My personal mental health care resume includes numerous failed medication cocktails, ECT, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Talk Therapy and hospitalizations. I admit I understand how all of these treatments could potentially help, but they never did for me. It was a little over two and half years ago that I was introduced to Ketamine for depression. I am alive today because of a drug that is raising many questions and concerns from the professional world.
I recently wrote a blog, Ketamine Therapy And A New Emotional Language: Don’t Just Stand There, Feel Something, focused on managing and understanding a new emotional language now that Ketamine has lifted the depressive symptoms. It was after posting that article that I felt I needed to elaborate.
I have spent time logging the changes I feel I am making. How am I progressing? Am I? I often need to see it in writing to recognize growth. I have been really looking forward to writing what I have learned. I want to expound on the topic of redefining what depression is for me now. It has been a huge part of my recovery. I really believe that. It has been so incredibly confusing. My depression is lifted with the aid of Ketamine therapy and it leaves me being able to feel. Depression kills. It robs me of expressing myself. I don’t understand simple things. The concept of feeling is new to me. In a way. It is. It is still frustrating at times. I mentally record all the actions and emotions I categorized as part of being depressed. If asked how I felt, my standard replies were depressed or suicidal.
All my life, my world has been colored by the burdens of depression and anxiety.
It is my belief that these illnesses made it impossible to feel a vast number of emotions. I wasn’t aware that my emotional language was so limited. It took Ketamine therapy to open my eyes. I would just pile all types of unpleasant feelings and label them depressed Susan. I mentioned this annoyance in a recent blog. I know that blog entry only barely covered all I have unearthed by paying attention and repeatedly examining my feelings and relabeling my emotions with accurate terminology.
I began to realize after about a year of Ketamine an usual pattern in my assigning my words with the correct emotions. I noticed, for example, if I felt disappointed I quickly classified that sensation as a symptom of depression.
I know now that I habitually mislabeled my body and mind data. I continue to. I paid attention. If I hear my inner voice exclaim, man I am so miserable. I must be depressed. I am depressed. I would later write that I felt frustrated through the day, that must mean that I am depressed and the Ketamine is wearing off.
If I experienced an unsatisfying or unacceptable thought or feeling, it was because I was depressed again. I do this a lot. I am gaining the ability to differentiate. It is not an easy task. I have been defining all my feeling through my illness. I accept that. Maybe.
It is painful. Rewiring the brain is a tough task.
I was watching television the other day and cried during a commercial and automatically thought that must mean I am depressed. I halt everything I am doing and analyze the whys. I am afraid of tears now. My world has been filled with an ocean of tears. The tears represent depression for me. It is not a release or expression. It is a warning sign. It is a predictor of what is to come; debilitating sadness. Pure Hell. A nightmare I am forced to revisit.
It has been confusing.
You mean I can cry to express how charged up a movie made me? You mean, it is not because I am weak and see the world through this fogging filter? I can cry and not fall apart? I can cry and feel okay? I can cry and not have suicidal thoughts? I can cry and survive the pain? I can.
I am rewiring my brain. It is painful work. I keep pointing out flaws in my thinking and that hurts. I can be brutal. I attack. I want to be better than this. I must.
I am learning. I am human. I am flawed. I will not fall apart if I make a mistake. I can write a different ending. Ketamine helps me clarify and understand with hope and not the critical eye I typically view myself with.
Ketamine gives me the ability to disengage.
I don’t personalize my world nearly as much as I once did. I can find that I can get caught up with obsessing over interactions I have with others. When I am in need of Ketamine, which is generally every two weeks, and If I thought poorly of someone, or was hurt by a stranger, I decided my depression was clouding my experience and I am due for another treatment.
This is not alway true.
If I am able to stop and reflect, I may not be depressed. If I am capable of searching for another explanation or seeing the situation from another person’s point of view, I may be mislabeling my feelings or the motives of others.
It is exhausting work.
I, of course, did not become aware of just how many emotions I named depression until I started getting Ketamine therapy. I have no doubt in my mind that this new tool was acquired after I began Ketamine therapy. I feel it is absolutely because of the dissociative effects of Ketamine that I can separate myself from my illness. I get to step outside of myself. Disconnect. I find clarity where once only suicide resided. I am convinced that because of the way Ketamine allows me freedom from my illness, I am capable of feeling an array of emotions now.
I have literally been forced to learn the differences between the simple words. The ones we are taught as children in Kindergarten. Common terms like sad, happy, good, and bad were all placed behind the primary word dictating my experience: Depression.
In my past, it seems as though I understood feelings only in two categories: depressed and tolerable.
Ketamine has shaken up my emotional vocabulary.
It has been so strange. This is a lesson I was so unaware I needed to learn because of my love of words and their meanings. I prided myself on being a master at expressing myself with words. How could I not know the difference between clinical depression and a bad day?
Unfortunately, I often confuse my emotions. If I am exhausted, I often incorrectly label this emotion as depression. Add anxiety to the mixture, and I have been swimming in confusion. I am grateful for each and every lesson. I wish they were not so painful for me.
I equate many, many feelings for depression. It is sort of embarrassing. Okay, I admit it, I am hampered at times by the knowledge that I misrepresented my emotions. I am grateful not to blame every negative aspect of my life on depression. Perceptions are valuable. Depression plays games. It changes the rules constantly. I can understand how I would be so ignorant about the variances.
Ketamine allows me to recognize the slightest discrepancies in my feelings. I feel this has been crucial and immensely beneficial in my understanding of myself and how depression has affected my life as well as significant others in my world.
A raw experience. It hurts me deeply. Yet, I am appreciative. I know these insights propel me forward. I am not stuck.
I have a goal. I am stating it here for all to read. I want to eliminate the word depressed from my vocabulary. I plan to only allow myself to describe how I am doing as depressed if I am spending too much time entertaining suicidal thoughts. I enjoy the dictionary. I will search my bank of words and try to redefine my perceptions.
I strive to better understand my emotions. I know with education that I can define a brighter future for myself.
I find it interesting that I routinely misjudge my feelings. I have been involved in some form of therapy for three decades. I spent years in psychotherapy discussing and analyzing my actions and emotions. Years.
And I was doing it all wrong?
It has been challenging. I insist on practicing my ability to not tear myself apart for what I did not know at the time. I am making changes.
I am rewiring.
I know I will falter. I vow to be patient during this process. I feel it is a vital process. It is an extraordinary lesson and one that will make living a tiny bit better for me now. I am sure I will be surprised by what doors and windows will open up and assist me in finding inner peace.
More than anything, I want acceptance. I fight it. I am bitter. I have lived with debilitating treatment resistant depression for decades. I don’t want to feel sorry for myself. I want to be better than that.
Ugh. I am determined to reach a point when I don’t resent the added challenges being mentally ill has. It definitely throws obstacles in my path at the most inopportune times. Disruptions.
I am a long distance away from acceptance, but I am hopeful.
I am a student. Ketamine has been nominated as my teacher. I love my teacher. I hate the exams.
If you are interested in educating yourself on Ketamine therapy for Treatment Resistant Depression, check out the four-part series I wrote answering questions about Ketamine use, based on my experience with Ketamine therapy over the past 2.5 years, for The Injection & Infusion Clinic of ABQ.
My first blog, Ketamine: Addressing Questions & Concerns focused on my early experience with Ketamine Infusions.
In part two of the series, Addressing Questions & Concerns About Ketamine Therapy for Treatment Resistant Depression I addressed questions and concerns about Intramuscular Ketamine verses Ketamine Infusion therapy.
In my third blog, Frequently Asked Questions: Redefining Depression With The Assistance Of Ketamine Therapy, I was a bit more random. I had emails with several questions and themes, and I addressed as many inquiries as I could.
In my final question and answer dialogue, Pondering Concerns & Questions: The Benefits Of Ketamine For Treatment Resistant Depression, I discussed research, clinical studies, and the need for changes to occur within our insurance companies and federal government so that maybe one day Ketamine will not be so difficult to afford or obtain, from any qualified professional.
I hope these personal blogs from a patient that suffered for over four decades with treatment resistant depression will be helpful in convincing you why Ketamine could help you. Also, if you would like to become a provider of Ketamine Therapy try enrolling in The Ketamine Academy‘s online Ketamine Infusion Therapy training course; it is an excellent decision. The Ketamine Academy online program will surely benefit you and the mental health community.
n conclusion, If you know of anyone suffering with treatment resistant depression, like I do, let them know that Ketamine therapy may be an option worth looking into. It has been and continues to offer me relief from my symptoms. If you or someone you know are considering Ketamine infusion therapy, please visit the Boise Ketamine Clinic website for low cost ketamine infusion and injection options. If you are not in the Boise, Idaho area I suggest approaching a local professional and start educating them on the benefits of Ketamine. It doesn’t hurt to ask for what you need. You can also visit my Ketamine Provider & Location List to find a provider in your area.
I have been generating a Ketamine Providers and Locations list and I update it regularly. The provider list can be found here and on my personal website. This list may help you find a clinic in your city or state.
Feel free to visit The Ketamine Academy if you want to become a Ketamine Provider. Think about enrolling in your dream today. If you are fascinated, but not yet ready to commit, I recommend the free trial to help you determine whether you want to invest in yourself and in this is new online ketamine infusion training course. Just think, if you enrolled in The Ketamine Academy your new clinic could easily be added to my directory for the grand opening!