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RachelSusan: Zoloft - on, off and reinstated

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RachelSusan

@Carmie

Hi Carmie,

 

How nice of you to stop by.  Thank you.  All goes well on my end. I continue to SLOWLY taper.  I have another taper coming up this Saturday.  My body is my guide.  If I have mild symptoms I wait for the adjustment and then continue on at my standard rate of decrease.  If I have symptoms that are above mild I hold longer than usual before the next decrease. I usually decrease by about 4%.  It hasn't been easy but it is doable.

 

I read that you just made another small cut as well. With patience we will get off these drugs.

 

I see you supporting others on this website.  I so appreciate you being here and enjoy reading what you have to say to our fellow sufferers.  You are always such a positive voice.  Thank you again for all you do.

 

 

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Frogie
40 minutes ago, RachelSusan said:

@Carmie

Hi Carmie,

 

How nice of you to stop by.  Thank you.  All goes well on my end. I continue to SLOWLY taper.  I have another taper coming up this Saturday.  My body is my guide.  If I have mild symptoms I wait for the adjustment and then continue on at my standard rate of decrease.  If I have symptoms that are above mild I hold longer than usual before the next decrease. I usually decrease by about 4%.  It hasn't been easy but it is doable.

 

I read that you just made another small cut as well. With patience we will get off these drugs.

 

I see you supporting others on this website.  I so appreciate you being here and enjoy reading what you have to say to our fellow sufferers.  You are always such a positive voice.  Thank you again for all you do.

 

 

Hi RS:

 

It sounds like you are doing wonderful. I’m so happy for you.

 

My fiancé accepted a job 20 minutes from our new house. We weren’t quite expecting to move so quickly, but here we go! I’m doing ok. Have a little anxiety, but it’s just situational, moving and doing everything that needs done in just a couple of weeks.

 

Just wanted to popped over and say congratulations! You’ve got this🎉🎈🎊

 

Take care,

 Frogie xx

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RachelSusan

@Frogie

 

Hi Frogie,

I'm very happy to hear from you. I know it's stressful now but just think, you are going home!!!! Thanks for the good wishes. I will  be OK and I know it, it is just taking so darn long. It looks like you are doing great with your Xanax taper. I am so happy for you.

xoxo RS

 

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Frogie

Hi RS:

 

Just wanted to drop by and say hi and see how you were doing?

 

Hope well.😊

 

Keep up the great work!

 

Take care,

 Frogie xx

 

 

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RachelSusan

Frogie,

 

Wow, I am pleasantly surprised you stopped by to say hello. It means a lot to me.  I am doing OK. Just made another cut this morning.  You know how it is, with each cut comes some fear and then the reality is a little discomfort and then it all settles down again.

 

I don't know where you are in your move, I haven't been on this site lately, but I hope it is going smoothly.

 

xo

RS

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Frogie
1 hour ago, RachelSusan said:

Frogie,

 

Wow, I am pleasantly surprised you stopped by to say hello. It means a lot to me.  I am doing OK. Just made another cut this morning.  You know how it is, with each cut comes some fear and then the reality is a little discomfort and then it all settles down again.

 

I don't know where you are in your move, I haven't been on this site lately, but I hope it is going smoothly.

 

xo

RS

That’s great! Another cut. You will do fine. Might have your usual symptoms, but it will be nothing major. I’m doing a happy dance 💃 for you!

The packers come August 2nd and move us August 3rd. So, we are up here doing some last minute things, then the fun starts next week!

Good luck! 🎉🎉🎈🎈🎊🎊

 

Take care,

 Frogie xx

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JackieDecides
On 7/27/2019 at 12:31 PM, RachelSusan said:

Just made another cut this morning.  You know how it is, with each cut comes some fear and then the reality is a little discomfort and then it all settles down again.

 

how has it been since the cut? 

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RachelSusan

Hi Jackie, Thanks for stopping by.  It was the usual. I did the cut, had a few days of minor symptoms and then they settled down.  I was very happy that this time it was only a few days. Sometimes the symptoms can stick around for a few weeks and be harsher.  But even when they do stick around a few weeks it is still much better than before I had any stability.  I am so grateful not to be going through torture any more. I think all of us on this site have either been there or are there now.

Warm wishes.

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oops44

hi rs

hope all is well. just wanted to drop in and say congratulations on your taper.  it looks like you're on top of it.  keep kicking butt and we all look forward to your next update.

 

toodles!

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thelegend

Any new update Rachel? You are awesome and have been so helpful to me! Hope to someday get to where you are.

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RachelSusan

Hi Legend,

 

Thank you for the post.  I just wrote on your thread regarding the possible double dosing.  You will be alright.

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embd

Hi Rachel,

 

As a follow-up to our earlier conversation about insomnia, did you experience your bad insomnia during your bad wave, or during your C/T? How long did the bad sleep pattern last? If it was during your wave, had it resolved to normal sleep by the end of your 90-day wave, or did you proceed with your taper before the sleep improved? I've decided not to resume my taper until my sleep is somewhat normal for 2-3 months. I'm hoping it's just a matter of waiting out the storm, that the sleep will right itself with time. There's only so long you can get by with fractured sleep, but at this point it's too late for me to updose really.

 

Warmly,

Erin

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RachelSusan

Hi Erin,

 

I had bad insomnia during both the CT and the wave, however the 3 days without sleep was during my original CT.  The insomnia during the bad wave was similar but I think I was able to nap a little more during the day so I wasn't quite so out of. I think the over all bad sleep pattern took slightly over 3 months, both times, to resolve.

 

No I didn't taper while having insomnia.  Well that is not 100% accurate.  There was an early taper period that a doctor I had at the time pushed me though.  He had me taper while symptoms were very high which ended up leading to an up-dose. Now that I am in control of my medical choices I choose not to taper while I have any symptoms. I know other people on this site will taper while symptomatic and they have their reasons for doing so. I just found that for me it's best not to taper while I have symptoms, even the very mild ones.  I am afraid if I do that there will be a cumulative effect from all the tapers that will put me into a big fat ugly wave.

 

It really sounds to me like you are on the right track.  You mentioned that you are already showing improvemet. I wish I could give you a solid timeline to use however all our bodies are different and our situations are different. I think you will be glad in a few months, or sooner, that you are not making any changes, either up-dosing or tapering.

 

Warm wishes.

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embd

Thanks for sharing your experience, Rachel. So by the time the bad sleep resolved, you were back to 7-8 hours of normal sleep? Or did that take a little longer?

 

I thought I was improving, but the last few days have seen some setbacks. In particular last night was rough - I was up most of the night with muscle aches, hot sweats, and diarrhea. I feel like I've been run over by a truck this morning. It seems symptoms from earlier in the wave that I thought had resolved have come back again this week with a vengeance. I took heart, though, by noticing that something similar happened to you two months into your wave. You thought you were coming out of it when suddenly you got severe symptoms that then took a few more weeks to resolve.

 

I'm more of a sprinter by nature, but this wave feels like running a marathon!! Hoping I can work in a nap later today. I agree with you about not tapering while symptomatic. I will be the same way once I resume tapering.

 

I just worry sometimes that my taper was so fast (unknowingly) that it will take me a few more months to stabilize. I'm already 14 weeks past my last cut and almost 10 weeks into the symptoms. Could you take a look at my signature and note my taper schedule since June 2018? Does that look like an excessively hasty taper, or just one perhaps done a little too quickly over the last few months?

 

Thank you!!

 

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RachelSusan

@embd

Hi Erin,

 

I don't remember exactly at which point I reached the full 7 to 8 hours of sleep, but I did reach it. It was one of those things that gradually got better over time.

 

I'm a really sorry to read that you got hit with another bad wave. I have had all the symptoms that you mentioned and I do know how brutal they can be. Right now the best you can do is just get through each day, but be sure to bear in mind that with time it will improve. The ups and downs can be very difficult emotionally though. I know they were really hard on me. 

 

I looked at your taper schedule since June 2018 and it looks like all your cuts were at 10%. It appears that you tapered exactly as recommended. While 10% is the suggested rate perhaps it is just a little too fast for your body?  You also had some other medications that you were taking in 2016 and 2017 and I am wondering if those changes might have impacted your taper in spring of 2018? Have any mods offered their thoughts on this? 'm  currently doing around 5% having found that anything over that is just too much for me.

 

Erin, I sounds like you have been going through some really tough times since August. Having gone through it I know how very difficult it can be to be hurting for so long.   I can't offer any advice since it's clear you have read a lot, have the same knowledge base that I have, and you have a very good handle on what's going on with you. I can only offer you my empathy.  I know how painful this is. I hope that you see improvement quickly.  Hang in there my friend. Better days are ahead.

 

Warm wishes.

 

 

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embd

Thank you, Rachel! Empathy from someone who has been there and is now stable is a precious gift. I do check every painful day off of a mental calendar, saying it brings me one day closer to resolution, but each day is like climbing a mountain. I find that my best sleep is usually my afternoon naps (today I got a refreshing 2.5 hour nap) and then anything I can manage to work in after 6am, so I'm only half-jokingly wondering if I should change my sleep schedule for the time being and try to sleep more during the day, since the cortisol and other hormones don't seem to be as interruptive to sleep at that point. Ah well, time and patience are the answer. Thank you for your reassurance, my friend.

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embd

Good morning, RS! I hope you had a peaceful sleep. :) I had a question about the burning skin issue you experienced during your wave (and still have from time to time). I'm wondering if it's similar to what I've been experiencing in my legs. I think it's nerve pain, and it really only started bothering me about three weeks ago. I haven't had it at any point in my taper before now. When you say burning skin, was it a literal feeling of a burn on the surface of the skin? Mine isn't on the skin itself, but deeper in my legs - yet it doesn't feel like the muscles, but rather nerves. Also, was yours all over your body? Mine is only on my legs and soles of my feet. Did yours interfere with sleep? Mine wakes me up often.

 

I haven't read anybody else's thread yet who has had this symptom, so I wasn't sure who to ask. Walking and stretching seems to help a bit, but then it comes back. Some days it's worse than others. It's worst in the middle of the night. I'm wondering if it resolves over time or if it's something that will be with me now.

 

Thank you!! 

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FarmGirlWorks

Hi @RachelSusan: thinking of you! How is it going on the Tapering Trail?

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RachelSusan

@FarmGirlWorks

 

Hi FGW,

 

It's really great to hear from you.  Thanks for stopping by.

 

You always make me laugh; here is why this time.  You ask me how it's going on the "taper trail".  I pictured myself on top of an old worn out donkey, I am wearing faded overalls and I'm chewing on a piece of straw, beat-up hat on my head.  The road is bumpy but this old donkey I am on top of is slowly picking it's way through the rough trail. "Get Along Little Doggies", an old cowboy classic is playing in the background. It made me laugh.  But to answer your question, well I am slowly bumping along the trail.  I'm very very very slowly getting there.

 

And you?  How is it going with Bio Dad?  What about the art world?  Have you created any new pieces lately?  Are you thinking about any new pieces?  See how I did that?  Creating pieces and thinking about pieces are two different things, but both are very valuable. How are you feeling over all?

 

Thanks again for stopping by.

RS

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RachelSusan

@embd

 

I hope you are feeling ok this afternoon.  Perhaps getting one of your power naps in?  In answer to your question, my burning skin is very much on top of the skin.  It feels like I've got a really bad sun burn on the skin. I have it on the front of both of my legs and occasionally my right arm.  I don't know why my left arm gets left out, but it does.  My left arm feels rather ignored and slighted and I keep telling it that it doesn't want to have what the other limbs have but it never listens to me. The pain has been so bad that it has woken me up many times.  I have read about my symptoms before here on this website.  Yours does sound different than mine so I'm not sure how much of my experience, if any, will be helpful to you.  The good news about withdrawal is that the symptoms are always changing and hopefully will eventually goes away.  I hope you reach stability quickly. It does indeed sound to me like you are improving. Hang in there.

 

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embd

@RachelSusan

 

Yes, you're right - your burning skin is different than what I've been experiencing. It's amazing to me how many different ways WD can manifest itself in our bodies, varying by the individual. Too funny about your left arm! :) You do have to maintain a sense of humor about the ridiculousness of what we're going through.

 

Yes, I was taking a power nap yesterday followed by a walk. :) Since I'd been sleeping a little better this week, I've been trying to walk for at least half an hour a day, to see if it helps the leg cramps. I think it has been - but then out of the blue again, last night the insomnia returned. I was alert as could be until around 4:30, then dozed fitfully for three hours. Even the WD insomnia refuses to have a pattern of any sort! There was no reason to be awake - my legs weren't actually hurting in bed for once, no hot flashes, no other troublesome symptoms. Just complete alertness -  it must have been cortisol. I'm still wide awake now mid-morning, so not sure I'll be able to nap this afternoon and I have no idea what I'll be like tonight. It amazes me how much the symptoms can change day to day, especially in waves. I can't wait to reach stabilization! 15 weeks since my last cut now, and almost 10 weeks since symptoms began...but who's counting. ;) 

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DaBro

Hi @embd

 

i tapered off 25mg Zoloft over 1 month in October 2018. I felt amazing for 1 week then the WD started. Symptoms were clicking and feeling like nettles in my head, tinnitus, eyelid twitch, stiff tongue and insomnia, typically 1-2 nights a week. 1 year on things are much better. The twitch and stiff tongue have pretty much gone and insomnia is 1-2x per month. 

 

My Insomnia is usually like a morning cortisol rush which stops me sleeping My advice is to get out of bed after an hour or two and read a kindle and have a warm milk. Stroking a cat helps. Accept it’s just part of the journey. Once back in bed I usually find the head buzz eases off between 1 and 3 and I can get 4-5hours sleep in. 

 

Keep a regular sleep pattern instead of day napping if possible. I do lots of counting in bed too. 

 

You’ll get there. 

Edited by Sassenach
incorrect address
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Tattycorum

Hi RachelSusan, it has been a long time since I checked in but I've been following your story and wishing you the best. You and I originally started on something of the same schedule to taper sertaline. I have found that each month's 10% cut does not worsen my ongoing, tolerable symptoms from a previous too-fast taper. So I've been able to steadily cut by 10% each month and only have a year or so to go. I hope your taper continues steadily without too many bad symptoms each month.

 

This past year after a lot of drama and tests and procedures I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, sarcoidosis of the lungs and some other places. The mainstream line of treatment for that, if it progresses to a certain point, is prednisone. I'm planning to decline/postpone prednisone for a number of reasons, including my recollection that you (or was it someone else?) had a bump in the road on your taper due to a steroid.

 

I have started researching low-dose naltrexone (LDN) for autoimmune disease and it looks very promising and not addictive. And, on this forum, I read that some folks find it useful to ease symptoms as they taper. If I try it I will report.

 

In the meantime, I find that my mega-dosing vitamin C (6,000 mg spread throughout the day) significantly helps my symptoms. Every now and then I'll have a bad day, which reminds me of how much better most of my days are than when I did my too-fast taper. 

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FarmGirlWorks
On 10/16/2019 at 2:33 PM, RachelSusan said:

"Get Along Little Doggies",

When I was little and herding cows on the dairy farm I grew up on, I used to sing "Get Along Lil' Cow Doggies, Get Along..." on their trails to the milking parlor.

 

On 10/16/2019 at 2:33 PM, RachelSusan said:

And you?  How is it going with Bio Dad?  What about the art world?  Have you created any new pieces lately?  Are you thinking about any new pieces?  See how I did that?  Creating pieces and thinking about pieces are two different things, but both are very valuable. How are you feeling over all?

And you are tricky, @RachelSusan. No, I have not made any new pieces of art but have been able to think different thoughts in the last few weeks. More imaginative, more hopeful, less ruminating and spiraling down. Have been sleeping more (8+ hours) which is not great but maybe I need it. Thankfully, unlike many folks here, lack of sleep was never a big problem. As for art, re-thinking my relationship to it... as far as bio-dad: what a wild ride, still. We are (knock on wood) going to Germany/Poland/Venice for 21 days leaving next Wednesday. He has had some health issues (hip/knee) and this trip has been on-again-off-again... so until I see the whites of his eyeballs I will not believe it. In the meantime, with a week to go, I have to act like it is happening and that is crazy busy, happy yet stressful.

 

Thanks for asking: I am feeling definitely different. And given the hell that WD is, this different is better. Still stressed but slightly more resilient.

Edited by FarmGirlWorks

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RachelSusan

@Tattycorum

 

What a pleasant surprise to hear from you.  Yes I was the one that had the problem with Prednisone and tapering.  It's no longer a problem even though I am still on it.  For one, I am not on such a high dose and additionally it's not new to my body. It took me a while to get used to it though.

 

I am very sorry to read you have Sarcoidosis. You mentioned having it in your lungs as well as other places.  Is shortness of breath currently an issue?

 

I too have fairly good days with the withdrawal symptoms. I am mostly stable with an occasional bad few days after a taper but it certainly is something I can live with. I figure I have about two years to go until I finish tapering because I am having to taper in such smaller increments.  You however are doing great. I just looked at your signature and .86 mg is so fantastic. I am so happy for you. Doesn't it feel wonderful to be getting off of it?

 

I still follow you so anything you post I should continue to see.

 

Tattycorum, thanks again for checking in, it really means a lot to me.

 

Warm wishes,

Rachel

 

 

 

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RachelSusan

@FarmGirlWorks

Hi FGW,

 

Keep thinking about your art.  Sometimes it might take a while for things to swirl around in the brain before it actually is produced as art. Thinking is the precursor to doing.  Then when you are ready, and only when you are ready, you will produce something.

 

Feeling different? Interesting.  Different seems to be a very neutral word, at least to me. I hope that different slants at least a little to the positive side of things.  If not than maybe it is a catalyst that will eventually lead to positive?

 

I hope the trip happens for you.  If we don't hear from you for a while we will know you are gallivanting the world. Have fun.

 

 

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