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SkyStreamer: tapering off Cipralex / escitalopram safely

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SkyStreamer
4 hours ago, eymen23 said:

You found almonds in place of your teeth?!?! My goodness, you really are going nuts.

 

Thanks eymen23! You gave me a smile! 

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SkyStreamer
2 hours ago, xyz said:

hi SKy,

i used to have terrible terrible, terrible terrible nightmare

so bad that when i described it to people, they had goose bumps.

dream of dead people, of haunted house, of me being dead and not knowing it. sad dream of deserted island.

it is our injured brain.

 

it will get better. learn from this "nightmare". the taper at 10% will feel like vacation.

each time i have a bad wave, i think "but look at the brighter side, the window will be much more enjoyable"- and it is true, after a bad wave, comes the clarity, the peace, the love, the gratitude of being able to go shopping without a panic attack.

the excitement of mundane things such as repainting the kitchen...

 

the best is yet to come!

 

 

 

 

Thanks xyz! Very encouraging comments!

 

I've definitely learned from all this that slower and safe is always better. Too bad that pain and suffering are usually our best teachers!! :(

 

I've definitely experienced little glimmers of gratitude during this ordeal. The suffering makes gratitude natural at times, without even having to work on it. I woke up this morning and said: 'Thank God that I'm alive. That I got 7-8 hours of sleep. That I'm not in a nightmare any longer. That I still have my teeth!'

 

I find that lately I've been spending many consecutive days inside without going out in the fresh air at all. I think it might help if I make more of an effort in this area. I usually like the outdoors, but during these waves of darkness, I feel like I've developed and allergy to it. Achoo!! 

 

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xyz
3 hours ago, SkyStreamer said:

 

Thanks xyz! Very encouraging comments!

 

I've definitely learned from all this that slower and safe is always better. Too bad that pain and suffering are usually our best teachers!! :(

 

I've definitely experienced little glimmers of gratitude during this ordeal. The suffering makes gratitude natural at times, without even having to work on it. I woke up this morning and said: 'Thank God that I'm alive. That I got 7-8 hours of sleep. That I'm not in a nightmare any longer. That I still have my teeth!'

 

I find that lately I've been spending many consecutive days inside without going out in the fresh air at all. I think it might help if I make more of an effort in this area. I usually like the outdoors, but during these waves of darkness, I feel like I've developed and allergy to it. Achoo!! 

 

 

sky,

i find that having some humor is super important.

my mother in law told me, when i was in the throw of benzo induced akathisia, that she couldn't wait for me to b**** at her son again. that was a sign of good mental health for me!

so each time, i start to complain about my husband, not doing this and that in the house, i think "humm... maybe i need another dose of benzo withdrawal"

nothing like a bit of suffering to raise some gratitude

seriously, if it were not for the permanent Tinnitus, i would be say that it is all worth it.

 

yeoh, get outside. withdrawal for me is like a psychological thriller. it is good to take a walk and be in nature a bit to come down to earth.

 

 

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SkyStreamer

A Record of my day today: 01/02/2019

 

NIGHT: slept 7-8 hours; woke up from a terrible nightmare at 1:30am and had a panic attack; wife helped me out; went back to sleep after 1.5 hours (utterly terrified!!!)

6:45am: woke up; went on SA; responded to some comments

9am: woke-up; took my 7.5mg of Cipralex; felt intense hopelessness & anxiety

10am-2pm: worked from home; less anxiety & hopelessness

3pm: severe anxiety and hopelessness; very agitated mind and body; did 30 minute guided relaxation CD

3:30pm: less  anxiety and hopelessness

5pm-8pm: went out for walk with my wife; went to Indigo & bought some books & magazines for late night wake-ups; ate out

8:15pm-9pm: 30 minutes prayer

9pm: BEDTIME (trying to get to bed at around 9pm every night)

 

Overall:

- less anxiety & hopelessness (from previous day)

- More glimmers of positive mood (not a lot and not intense)

- Getting along better with my wife (what a difference that makes to my mood & day!!)

- Periods of feeling like everything was not real (consistent from day to day)

 

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SkyStreamer
On 1/1/2019 at 8:31 PM, Shoehorn said:

Hey SkyStreamer, I'm in Canada and you're correct, liquid Cipralex isn't available here.

 

I've also been tapering from 15mg Cipralex since June. I'm down to 7mg now. I do the liquid suspension, it's super easy and quick. I use a small glass cup, 10mg generic Cipralex pills, and a 10ml oral syringe (drugstores and pharmacies will often give you a couple for free). Each morning before breakfast, I put 10ml water in the cup, add 1 pill, let it sit for 10 - 15 minutes to dissolve, give it a good shake, draw 3mg out with the syringe and squirt it down the sink, and drink the rest in the cup (7ml / 7mg). Rinse the cup and syringe. Done!

 

I find that different brands of generics have different fillers, so see if you can get the same manufacturer each time you refill your prescription.

 

Hi Shoehorn - thanks for chiming in! Nice to have another Canadian aboard. 

 

You sound like you're doing well. Congratulations! Hope it continues!

 

Just a few follow-up questions about making your own Cipralex liquid solution:

 

1. How do you know that the Cipralex is evenly distributed throughout the entire solution after shaking it and withdrawing with a syringe? My concern is that the shaking might not translate into a proportionate solution, and that it would be different every time, depending upon how it is shaken, how long, and the time between the shake and the withdrawal of the syringe. 

 

2. Did you notice any change in symptoms going from the pill form to a liquid solution?

 

3. What are your biggest challenges with tapering with liquid?

 

4. Did you notice that WD symptoms became more numerous and intense when you went below 10mg? Without knowing about the 10% tapering method, and this SA group, I tapered 1/4 of a pill on three different occasions. And, the worst in terms of WD symptoms was when I went from 10mg to 7.5mg. Awful anxiety, hopelessness and nightmares. Ups and downs in moods each day. And general inability to tolerate even little bits of stress and exertion. 

 

By the way, if you're into mindfulness, and enjoy guided relaxation meditations, I have been keeping my head above water these last two days with this one: https://bit.ly/2VmIHeBThis guy does some really good ones! 

 

Hope you continue doing well!! Perseverance is key for me! :) 

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ChessieCat
33 minutes ago, SkyStreamer said:

2. Did you notice any change in symptoms going from the pill form to a liquid solution?

 

When changing form of a drug we usually suggested doing a cross over.

 

3/4 pill + 1/4 liquid

1/2 + 1/2

1/4 pill + 3/4 liquid

 

Each for about 3 days - week

 

This is gentler on your system.

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Shoehorn

Hi SkyStreamer! Great questions.

 

Quote

1. How do you know that the Cipralex is evenly distributed throughout the entire solution after shaking it and withdrawing with a syringe? My concern is that the shaking might not translate into a proportionate solution, and that it would be different every time, depending upon how it is shaken, how long, and the time between the shake and the withdrawal of the syringe. 

 

I'm not very scientific about it. I just try to do the same routine each day, like I will shake it for about 5 seconds each time, not a whole minute one day and only 10 seconds the next. I always pull the discard amount into the syringe immediately after shaking. I figure there is enough "sameness" in this routine each day that I'm getting a relatively similar dose.

 

 

Quote

2. Did you notice any change in symptoms going from the pill form to a liquid solution?

 

Yes, I had mild nausea each day after switching to liquid, it would start 90 minutes after the dose. It went away after a few weeks. Small pieces of candied or pickled ginger helped a lot.

 

 

Quote

3. What are your biggest challenges with tapering with liquid?

 

No challenges. It was easy once I developed a routine and got into the habit of "making" my dose each morning. I even did it when I traveled, I had no trouble at airport security with the oral syringe or pills in my luggage and I borrowed a cup at the hotel. It's much easier than trying to cut up tiny bits of pills and wondering if you have the dosage correct.

 

 

Quote

4. Did you notice that WD symptoms became more numerous and intense when you went below 10mg?

 

Not so far but once I got to 10mg I held there for a long time and decided to hold after each third reduction to give myself time to stabilize. It sounds like you made too much reduction too fast. It will get better if you are patient, there seems to be no substitute for time with this process. Good luck!

 

And thank you for the meditation link -- Michael Sealey is great! I listened to a lot of his guided meditations during the worst of my depression, it helped get me through very bad insomnia although I would have prefered sleep 😁 I also really liked Meditations by Rasa, she has a lot of healing type guided meditations and her voice is very soothing!

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SkyStreamer
9 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

When changing form of a drug we usually suggested doing a cross over.

 

3/4 pill + 1/4 liquid

1/2 + 1/2

1/4 pill + 3/4 liquid

 

Each for about 3 days - week

 

This is gentler on your system.

 

Hi ChessieCat, 

 

I'm just a little confused about what you mean when you say, "Each for about 3 days - week." Do you mean that you do each of these only for three days for one week, and then after three weeks, you cross over fully to only the liquid solution?

 

Also, I took a peak at your website. Great info! About your book list on there - can you recommend me one of these, or another book, given my current situation and goals? I felt my interest spike when I saw the one about dealing with WD symptoms. Your thoughts?

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Gridley

It means each from 3 days to a week.  It's your decision whether you want to do each stage for 3 days or if you want to do each stage for longer.  If you choose to do each stage for 3 days, on the 10th day of the crossover you'd be taking all liquid.

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brassmonkey

Looks like CC and Gridley have things well under control. 

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ChessieCat
6 hours ago, SkyStreamer said:

Also, I took a peak at your website. Great info! About your book list on there - can you recommend me one of these, or another book, given my current situation and goals? I felt my interest spike when I saw the one about dealing with WD symptoms. Your thoughts?

 

Thanks SkyStreamer, I originally created the website as an attachment for my email-campaign.  Some of the attachments have been deleted because there is limited upload allowed per SA member.

 

Links on SA:

 

recommended-books-on-antidepressant-withdrawal

 

recommended-books

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SkyStreamer
On 1/2/2019 at 11:25 PM, Shoehorn said:

Hi SkyStreamer! Great questions . . . . . . . . .

 

Thanks, Shoehorn, for getting back to me. All very helpful answers and info.

 

I'm grateful to have a fellow Canadian on here who can provide some good support and encouragement. :) 

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SkyStreamer
15 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

Gwen Olsen was a pharmaceutical representative for 15 years . . . . . . . .

 

Thanks CC! Really appreciate it. You've got a lot of great wisdom. Happy that you're helping us out!

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SkyStreamer

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SkyStreamer

Is there any way to copy my comments from another program document (Word, etc.) and paste it in here without having it become an image (png. or jpg.)? Sometimes, I write in my journal and would like to copy and past parts of it in here, like my last post (the breakdown of my day on 01/03/2019). But, it seems like it only accepts it as an image. Or, maybe this is ok and still legible. Thoughts?

 

Thanks!!

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SkyStreamer

Also, is there any way to change my profile name from "SkyStreamer" to "Sky" for the sake of brevity, so that other members do not have to write out a long name when responding?

 

 I swear it's not because I think "Sky" just sounds cooler!! Ok, maybe it is a bit for this reason too. :) 

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ChessieCat
7 hours ago, SkyStreamer said:

You've got a lot of great wisdom.

 

Most of what I know about psychiatric drugs is what I've learned from SA, reading and researching on the internet.

 

7 hours ago, SkyStreamer said:

Is there any way to copy my comments from another program document (Word, etc.) and paste it in here

 

The image you have provided is fine.  However, there is a limitation on the total amount of MBs we can upload per member.

 

I have found that typing in word using the default tabs and then copying and pasting into the reply box seems to work okay and keeps the columns.  However, the spacing between lines can go a bit crazy.

 

7 hours ago, SkyStreamer said:

change my profile name from "SkyStreamer

 

The name SkyStreamer is fine.  If you start signing off as Sky other members will pick up on it.  And I like SkyStreamer as it is a unique name.

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SkyStreamer
56 minutes ago, ChessieCat said:

I have found that typing in word using the default tabs and then copying and pasting into the reply box seems to work okay and keeps the columns.  However, the spacing between lines can go a bit crazy.

 

Hmmm. What do you mean by "default tabs?" I'd love to be able to copy and paste from Word, if it is possible. 

 

56 minutes ago, ChessieCat said:

The name SkyStreamer is fine.  If you start signing off as Sky other members will pick up on it.  And I like SkyStreamer as it is a unique name.

 

Ok - no problem. Doesn't hurt to try. :) 

 

Thanks!

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ChessieCat
27 minutes ago, SkyStreamer said:

What do you mean by "default tabs?"

 

After you type a word, press tab.  Type another word and press tab.  There are default tabs set up evenly across a page.

 

29 minutes ago, SkyStreamer said:

Ok - no problem.

 

There are many members with Sky in their name so it's good that you have one that is really different from the others.  BTW are you a parachutist?  Or kite flyer?  A base jumper?  Or one of those fly with a winged suit?  http://www.wingsuitfly.com/tony-suit/4579381660

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SkyStreamer
1 hour ago, ChessieCat said:

There are many members with Sky in their name so it's good that you have one that is really different from the others.  BTW are you a parachutist?  Or kite flyer?  A base jumper?  Or one of those fly with a winged suit? 

 

Lol! No, I'm not any of these; but I can understand why you might think so, given this name. To be honest, I'm not sure why I chose it. It was the first thing that came to my mind when I was signing-up on the site. I'm sure there is probably some deeply unconscious reason why I picked it. But, I'm unaware that reason. The closest connection I can think of is that I really like the sky. Looking at it in the summer gives me a lot of peace. As for the word, 'Streamer,' I have no clue what was going on. Probably just another manifestation of AD withdrawal. :) 

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ChessieCat

I imagine that some of them would be fun to do.  I said kite flyer, meaning the old fashioned kite on the end of a piece of string and I left out paraglider.

 

I am fascinated with clouds.  I love the ripple clouds that look like sand at the beach in the shallow water.  And also cirrus.  I saw some mammatus clouds a few years ago that were absolutely fascinating.  I had never seen or heard of them before and had to google them.  They are clouds that can appear after a storm has moved through.  The ones I saw were really large and hanging down.

 

We have some members with some really strange names and you wonder what on earth made them think of it.  Yes, we'll blame it on drugging and/or withdrawal.  Makes life interesting if nothing else.

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SkyStreamer

Day Breakdown: 01/04/2018

 

NIGHT: 8 hours of sleep; less restless; woke-up once for 10-15 mins with medium anxiety

6:30am: woke-up for the day; less tired; glimmers of hope and motivation for the day ahead; no hopelessness 

7am: 30 mins of prayer

8:30am-12noon: worked from home; low anxiety; little hopeful

12:15pm: 20 mins guided relaxation meditation

12:30-3pm: worked from home

3pm-4pm: played outside with my children

5:30-6:30pm: jogged for 45 mins. (8 km)

6:30pm: shower; very high anxiety; small panic attack; increased mind momentum; intrusive negative thoughts

7pm: family dinner: same symptoms as during shower

8:30pm: 45 mins prayer; decreased anxiety; no more panic attacks; decreased mind momentum & negative thoughts

9:45pm: BED

 

OVERALL

- Less anxiety & fear 

- Less tired & exhausted

- More glimmers of hope, motivation, and calm

- Having feelings of unreality off and on throughout the day (less than a few days ago)

- Glimmers of enjoyment of work

- Little more control of mind and thoughts (i.e. letting thoughts come and go; not being consumed by thoughts)

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SkyStreamer
2 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

I am fascinated with clouds.  I love the ripple clouds that look like sand at the beach in the shallow water.  And also cirrus.  I saw some mammatus clouds a few years ago that were absolutely fascinating.  I had never seen or heard of them before and had to google them.  They are clouds that can appear after a storm has moved through.  The ones I saw were really large and hanging down.

 

Yes, I love clouds too. They can be very calming. They move with such gentleness and grace - even the grey stormy ones. 

 

I'll have to take a look at the mammatus kind. Would like to know how they differ. 

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SkyStreamer

Day Breakdown: 10/05/2019

 

NIGHT: 7.5 hrs sleep; restless; woke up one time for 20 mins

6am: woke-up for the day; tired; exhausted; only a little motivation; but, low anxiety & fear

7am: 30 mins prayer

9am: took Cipralex dose

9-12noon: worked from home; a little motivation; low anxiety & fear

12noon: 30 mins. guided relaxation; a little calm & peaceful

2pm-3pm: exercised for 1 hr; extremely bored & unmotivated; mild hopelessness

3pm-6:30pm: worked from home; less bored & unmotivated; less hopelessness

8pm: 45 mins prayer; low anxiety & fear

9:20pm: BEDTIME

 

OVERALL

very low anxiety, fear & lack of hope

- A little motivated  (off and on)

- Small window of extreme boredom and a bit of hopelessness

- Noticing gradual stability

 

 

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SkyStreamer

From the beginning of December until close to the end of December, I experienced a gradual onset of WD Symptoms related to a 2.5mg reduction of my AD dose: intense anger, followed by a depressive state, followed by extreme anxiety and fear. It was one heck of a wave of WD symptoms! :(  

 

At the end of December, I experienced what seemed to be a peak of anxiety and fear (very high), and then after, for the last 7 days, I seemed to gradually become more stable. For example, less anxiety, fear and hopelessness; and greater periods of normalcy: motivation, focus, hope, and, at times, peace. 

 

I don't want to create an expectation for myself, whereby I create another wave simply by believing it will come. But, I'm just wondering if it is possible that I may be slowly coming out of the withdrawal from my latest 2.5mg reduction - permanently? My WD symptoms started about a month after my reduction. Then, followed a month of an intense WD wave. Now, there is seven days of gradual improvement. I get the sense that I'm fully and completely coming out of this reduction induced WD wave. Can this be possible? 

 

I do a ton of self-care (prayer, mediation, relaxation, exercise, health eating, etc.). I reduced my cups of coffee from 4 to 2 cups a day (all decaf!). I also started taking my AD dose at the exact same time every morning (before, it was always within a 2 hour window).

 

Maybe I shouldn't even be thinking about all this, or considering it? Maybe I should just surrender to whatever comes? But, I just get the feeling like I'm going to start stabilizing for good - at least until whenever I decide to begin my 10% taper.

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ChessieCat
On 12/24/2018 at 7:04 AM, SkyStreamer said:

Week 1- 6 days at 10 mg, 1 day at 7.5 mg
Week 2- 5 days at 10, 2days at 7.5
Week 3- 4 days at 10, 3 days at 7.5
Week 4- 3 days at 10, 4 days at 7.5
Week 5- 2 days at 10, 5 days at 7.5

Week 6- 1 day at 10, 6 days at 7.5
Week 7- 7 days at 7.5

 

I am not writing this to make you feel bad, but to try and explain the reason for how you have been feeling and why things are starting to settle down.

 

You made a reduction using a method that is not recommended.  The brain likes consistency.  Taking the same dose at about the same time every day.  However, the way you tapered is preferable to going straight from 10mg to 7.5mg.  You probably would have felt much worse than you have done.

 

You also reduced 25% over a 6 week period, which averages out to about 16.66% per month. SA recommends no more than 10% of current dose.  So your reduction was more than 50% above SA's recommendation.

 

So the withdrawal symptoms you experienced are as a result of the above.  You are now stabilising.  Which is really good.

 

You are now taking your dose consistently.  When you start to taper following SA's protocol, it is reasonably unlikely that you will experience the same intensity of withdrawal symptoms.  However,  you do need to ensure that you truly are stable by holding for long enough and/or doing a smaller test reduction to see how you respond.  It is better to hold longer than to risk tapering too soon.  Even though my tapering was going well I did 2 longer holds, one at 50mg (convenient because of the tablets) and for about 3 months at 20mg (I had extra capsules) for about 7 weeks just to give my brain a chance to catch up if it needed to.

 

My own story might help you to understand what can happen when we go off the drug too quickly:

 

I've had two completely different experiences.  I CTed citalopram and felt great for a few months then got hit with the withdrawal flu and was bedridden for 2.5 weeks and lost 8kgs.  It wasn't until I joined SA that I made the connection that it was withdrawal.  I ended up on Pristiq.

 

I reduced my Pristiq from 100mg to 50mg and for 2 weeks I experienced severe cog fog, and even walking took my whole concentration.  I joined SA but didn't updose as suggested because I was trying, through the brain fog, to learn about what was happening.  A couple of days after joining I got to the stage that I was unable to type.  Having been a typist for 40+ years I knew that something was really wrong.  I was very thankful for SA's suggestion.  I went and took extra Pristiq.  Astoundingly after only about 4 hours I was able to type again and the brain fog was lifting.  Because I had a benchmark I knew that it was because of the drug.  After stabilising I have been following SA's protocol and I'm now down to 4.75mg and only experience mild withdrawal symptoms.  During times of stress, even good stress, they do ramp up a bit, and I sometimes find that after a reduction my anxiety increases a small amount for a few days.

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bubble
On 1/5/2019 at 10:22 AM, SkyStreamer said:

5:30-6:30pm: jogged for 45 mins. (8 km)

6:30pm: shower; very high anxiety; small panic attack; increased mind momentum; intrusive negative thoughts

I just noticed this in your notes. 

 

Strenuous physical exercise increases cortisol which in turn causes anxiety. This might explain the small panic attack you experienced. Even if we tolerated and benefited from a certain amount of exercise when our CNS becomes sensitized with withdrawal it can backfire. You may want to keep that in mind and re-evalute the intensity of your workouts. For instance  after exercises that raise my heart rate I at first feel good but after a while get hit by anxiety. If it was done in the afternoon or evening it disrupts my sleep severely.

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SkyStreamer
22 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

I am not writing this to make you feel bad . . . . .

 

No worries! I assume you're just trying to help me with honest and straightforward thoughts about my situation. Thanks for you comments. It's a good context in which to try and understand my situation.

 

22 hours ago, bubble said:

Strenuous physical exercise increases cortisol which in turn causes anxiety. This might explain the small panic attack you experienced. Even if we tolerated and benefited from a certain amount of exercise when our CNS becomes sensitized with withdrawal it can backfire. You may want to keep that in mind and re-evalute the intensity of your workouts. For instance  after exercises that raise my heart rate I at first feel good but after a while get hit by anxiety. If it was done in the afternoon or evening it disrupts my sleep severely.

 

Thanks, bubble! That thought had crossed my mind, but I didn't really give it much reflection. I think you're right. 

 

I tried reducing the strenuousness and intensity of my exercise today. I skipped for 15 mins (instead of my usual 30 mins). And, I skipped with only 65% of the intensity that I usually do. Unfortunately, I ended up having a few small panic attacks and a lot of anxiety immediately afterwards, spread out over a period of three hours. However, I think my less intense workout was just one of many other factors that lead to this today. Today was a family day, which is always much more stressful for me, as opposed to regular work days (when I'm working by myself). I have five fairly young kids and they are high energy. Also, we went to mass early this morning, and I pretty much just flew out of bed in a mad rush to try and make it there on time. Then, immediately after, I went for a very leisurely 30 minute walk by myself with my 4 kids (wife decided to go home, after we got into an argument). Then, when I came home, I tried to chill out by watching TV for about an hour. Then, I worked out, and after that is when the three hours of off and on small panic attacks occurred.

 

I think I will likely avoid cardio on family days (2 days each week!). I will keep it only for weekdays, when I am on my own, and when things are much less hectic. I think on work days, though,  that a 15 minute cardio workout with only 65% of my normal intensity might work out ok. I guess I can simply try it out, see what happens, try and listen to my body, and adjust accordingly for next time. I just don't want to over-react and eliminate all small amounts of medium intensity workouts completely for the time being. I'd rather try and see, and then adjust as I go. I feel it is a bit more balanced, and a bit less of a fear-based approach. I find that when I get fearful and start eliminating things out of fear, then my anxiety and fear begin to take more control of my life, and I begin to regress. 

 

Let me know what you think. Others, who are experienced in this area, are also welcome to comment. 

 

Thanks!

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SkyStreamer

Day Breakdown: 01/06/2019

 

NIGHT: 9 hours of sleep; best sleep yet this last week; less restlessness; less waking up for brief moments;

7am: woke-up for the day; emotionally stable; somewhat rested; no exhaustion

7:10-7:20: 10 mins prayer (usually pray for 30 mins)

7:30am-8am: mad rush with family to get ready and out the door for mass (we have 5 kids!); high anxiety; frustration; anger about having to go to mass

9am-10am: mass with family; took my regular Cipralex dose (9am); mid-level anxiety and frustration

11am-11:30am: leisurely walk with my 5 kids; high anxiety and a lot of racing thoughts (only realized this in retrospect)

12:15-1pm: played board games with one of my kids

1pm-2pm: watch TV by myself; high anxiety and racing thoughts (only realized this in retrospect)

2pm-3pm: 15 mins of skipping exercise with 65% of my normal intensity; then did 30 mins. of weights (weights usually don't get me too anxious)

                    - I was also very anxious about doing any cardio exercise because I had read Bubble's comments about my early panic attacks this week likely being related to doing cardio

                    - So, my mind was already playing with me and trying to get me worried about even doing 15 mins of skipping at less intensity (i.e., it was difficult not to believe I was going to get another panic attack) 

3pm-4pm: high anxiety; small panic attacks; did guided relaxation meditation; tried to relax

4pm-6pm: family dinner & hangout time; high anxiety; flashes of anger; some hopelessness; a lot of discouragement

6:15-7pm: played board games with kids; a little less anxiety, anger, hopelessness and discouragement

7:30: watched TV by myself; tried to relax; mid-level anxiety and discouragement; starting to improve and stabilize

8pm: 1 hr prayer

9:30pm: BEDTIME

 

OVERALL

- Better sleep at night (best one this week!)

- A lot of hectic activity (much more than usual)

                      - i.e., skipping morning prayer; rushing off to mass with family; mild fighting with wife; an extra 30 min leisure walk with my 4 kids, plus doing my regular exercise; playing and with my kids a lot; taking less breaks)

- A lot of anxiety, frustration, anger, lack of hope, & discouragement

- Much less aware of the present moment

- Much less aware of how I was causing myself anxiety and other negative emotional experiences

- More brain fog (feelings of unreality)

 

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Altostrata

Those notes are very helpful. Please continue to post them.

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SkyStreamer
12 hours ago, Altostrata said:

Those notes are very helpful. Please continue to post them.

 

ok - thanks!

 

Can you take a look at my 2nd last post (my reply to 'Bubble'), and let me know your opinion and thoughts? Would really appreciate it. :) 

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SkyStreamer

Day Breakdown: 01/07/2019

 

NIGHT: slept 7.5 - 8 hrs; woke-up one time in middle of the night with high anxiety; woke-up second time with mid-level anxiety

8am: woke-up for the day; a bit more tired than yesterday; a little unmotivated; but grateful for the sleep I had; mid-level anxiety

8:15am: 30 mins prayer; glimmers of hope and calm

9am: took regular 7.5mg Cipralex dose

9:30am-12noon: worked from home; set-up weigh scale; weighed pills & created 10% taper schedule on excel spreadsheet (downloaded from SA forum); gradual onset of higher-level anxiety; racing thoughts

12noon: 30 mins of guided relaxation mediation; less anxiety and fear; glimmers of hope and calm

1pm-5:30pm; worked from home; towards the end: a bit of OCD & racing thoughts; felt like I could have a panic attack

5:30-6pm: watched TV by myself; tried to relax

6pm-7:30pm: family dinner; played board games with my kids: gradual onset of high-level anxiety & racing thoughts;  felt like I could have a panic attack

7:45-8:30pm: watched TV by myself (News Bloopers! - very funny!); tried to relax; anxiety reducing; a little more stable towards the end

8:30pm: 45 mins prayer; more stable; less anxiety, fear and racing thoughts; glimmers of calm and hope; feel my body slowly getting ready for sleep (seems to be slowing down and getting tired)

9:30pm BEDTIME (trying to keep this consistent on both weekdays and weekends!)

 

Overall

low to mid-level anxiety most of the day

- Two periods of high anxiety (when I had done too much activity, without a break)

- Took a break from working out; seemed to help me stabilize from yesterday

-  A few glimmers of calm, hope, and motivation

- Seemed to get a lot accomplished (working from home)

- Ongoing tension with my wife

- Very enjoyable and meaningful time spent with my kids

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Carmie

Hi SkyStreamer, 

 

Just wanted to pop in to say hello. I can see that you overdid things, which in turn made your anxiety worse. It’s really a good idea to continue to pace ourselves. I read of people in withdrawals doing strenuous exercise and I think please don’t. There are some people that have no problem with it, but the vast majority end up getting extra withdrawal symptoms or more heightened ones. 

 

Playing board games sounds like fun, great distraction. I bought Ticket To Ride a while back but I haven’t got around to figuring out how to play it yet. One of my friends has the same game as well and she’s going to show me how to play it one day. I have the European map, she has the American map. Continue having fun with those board games. 

 

Sending hugs🤗

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Miracle123
On 1/2/2019 at 11:08 PM, SkyStreamer said:

After all this, before going to back to sleep, I had a feeling of complete and utter hopelessness. That I will never get off these AD. That this wave will never end. That my panic attacks will get more frequent. That my panic attacks will get more powerful. I thought to myself that maybe I should reinstate my 10mg Cipralex dose, or at least reinstate another 1mg, to see if my WD symptoms reduce (I'm having a very tough time enduring this narly wave!). But, my wife told me I can push through and stay at this 7.5mg dose, and that things will eventually get better, if only very minimally. She seems to think that I need to just cultivate the belief that I will get through this rough period at 7.5mg, and that this will help me overcome it. I think she is right to some extent. 

Hi Skystreamer,

Im glad you got your ideal way for your next tapering.

All those withdrawals sound so familiar to me when im hit so hard and badly a year ago. You have to stay strong in mentality because your brain is playing trickery and lie with you to coming back for higher dose. Im have such a feeling when desperated to get an immediate relief.Please keep stable for your current 7.5mg dose until you feeling well and better. 

Withdrawals is up and down and keep repeated but when time passing you will feel the different in frequency and magnitute. Acceptance, patience and time will proof it. Take care.

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