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Healing

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

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Mort81

It can last much longer than a year but it supposed to speed up at some point. Its a true grind. I thought i was done with the tough waves. But a rough massage led me into my worst wave since the beginning. Patience is the key. Pain and waves is good I guess. It means healing is happening.

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shelbytrev

Will I know if I'm experiencing a window? Will I feel like my old self? Or are the symptoms still there but just seem to calm down for a bit? Maybe I'm not giving the moments where they calm down a bit enough credit because I'm expecting to feel "normal" ?

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LostInSpace

At first they're subtle.  I don't think you will feel like your old self in the early windows, but it's possible.  Enjoy those moments where you notice a little difference, they could be small windows.  

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blackrabbit

New to this thread but have been on this horrid journey since last April. Anyway, has anyone heard of the book, The Mood Cure by Julia Ross (she's an M.D.) ? In her book she talks abut how she has gotten people off medications with "virtually no side effects" by taking supplements, a change of diet, and exercise. I just started reading her book now.

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KarenB

Not everybody fits into the 'usual' patterns.  There is so much room for variation in w/d, so we do have people here for whom it takes longer to see a window - especially if they have had more drugs, more changes and higher doses (as you have). 

 

Can you direct your energy into embracing ways of managing your depression?  The symptoms forum has a lot of ideas. 

 

You'll get there George, it just takes the time it takes.

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scallywag

I'm intrigued by something SquirrellyGirl posted in an intro thread:

We do know for many that there seems to be bad waves [after the last dose] that come up somewhere around 3,6,9,11 months...

I've been dealing with trichotillomania (compulsive hair pulling) since my mid-teen years. If I recall correctly, I once read that after stopping or being "pull-free", waves of urges to recommence pulling arrive at similar times.

Hmm. <emoji for scratching my chin>

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scallywag

baffled: Waves and windows occur with all symptoms, emotional and physical.

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KarenB

There can be many things affecting a person post-taper.  Our brain has been affected, our gut, our emotions.  Healing has happened, but some of the finer points are still working themselves out - so there still needs to be care given to ourselves. 

 

Finding approaches that can help you continue on a healing path is a good idea:  Melt into your own life and It Gets Better:  Living Well While Being Sick are two good places to start.

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zandro

Anyone who didn't experience waves? Is there a %?

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olivialet

I have been wondering for awhile now how does it feel in the end of the withdrawal? We always hear people having short lived good windows and long exhausting waves in the acute stages of withdrawal. But I do wonder how does recovery looks like in the end of the withdrawal process? Is it that you have very long good window and then a shorter bad wave! And then after the window is even longer and the waves are shorter and shorter? I have been experiencing longer good periods- the last one lasted three months, and then the new bad wave came over me and this one is not loosening its grip on me yet, it's been three weeks. I hope that one day i won't be afraid to look into the future and feel sad in anticipation of a bad wave. Better yet I hope my body and mind will be predictable and I will learn my old self again.

 

Good energy to all

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zandro

Anyone ever experienced waves that just last hours? :/

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RockSie

Yes zando. There was a time where my windows and waves switched per minute.

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Petunia

Have any of you that have experienced a "window" have a period with no symptoms at all? I mean did you wake up in day and you felt completely normal?

 

Yes, this is what windows are like for me. Unfortunately, I've had very few of them and it took quite a long time before I experienced my first multi-day window like this. Waking up in the morning and feeling completely normal.... refreshed, enthusiastic about the day, relaxed and symptom free, is what signals a window for me now.

 

Until I had one of these symptom free windows, I thought a window was a period where symptoms were less intense, basically still feeling sick, but not in a wave. For the first part of my recovery process I was cycling between a slowly rising baseline and regular waves, where my symptoms would revert to an earlier level of intensity. But then I experienced several days in a row of feeling completely recovered, completely symptom free, like I'd had a miraculous recovery overnight.... but symptoms returned, which was confusing and very hard to accept after feeling completely normal and able to function like I used to.

 

Since this first real multi-day window, I've had two more. The longest one lasted 11 days. For me, they are often followed by a decline into a fairly severe wave until I come back again to a slightly improved baseline.

 

The best thing for me about these complete recovery type windows is that I get to experience evidence that my brain and nervous system is still capable of functioning normally, so its probably just a matter of more time before I'm able to sustain the normal state permanently.

 

The worst thing is having my 'recovery' cruelly snatched away after such a short time and I'm once again forced to accept that I have no control over the slow progress of this healing process.

 

Not everyone experiences windows and waves, but a significant majority seem to have this pattern develop as they recover.

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AliG

The windows do increase gradually in length and frequency. Eventually you're in a fairly permanent window with just a few ripples every now and then. Just enough to remind you of where you have been and what you have come through. All of this is temporary.

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Ndanges

My windows and waves come in moments. Not in days or weeks like I read here. Some days I feel good most part of the time and some days I have waves like 2 or 3 times a day lasting mainly 30 min/1 hour..but there is not pattern. Sometimes a wave can even last for few seconds or minutes. At the moment, It is mainly related to the head. Head pressure/pain and dreaming sensation.

 

When I feel a wave is approaching I just put some songs in headphones and it is all gone.. like magic..or when my husband makes a massage.. Because of that I have the hope I can control them somehow.. But the problem is: IT COMES BACK!!.. and sometimes I doubt if one day they will stop to come completely.. 

 

It is like someone is punching you in face constantly and you know how to deal.. you don't suffer.. you manage..you have peace.. This is great.. BUT we get tired to feel the pain again in some moments. Sometimes you loose your patience for been hitting in your face so many times..

 

But I am giving some time to my brain.. I believe in healing

 

Thank you!    

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Prohealer

I guess a more simplified way of asking would be, can you undo recovery with too much stress, drama and binge eating, or does it just throw the"table" off balance every time? I seem to get conflicting answers but i guess i need to learn not to keep seeking the answer, these neuro emotions are making me obsess over this.

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scallywag

Those things can be destabilizing but they don't send you back to the start, like one of those rotten long snakes in Snakes & Ladders. Or using the metaphor you've chosen, one could say that stress, drama, and stress eating knock out that wedge of wadded paper somebody put under a table leg to keep it level and stable.

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TweetyRose

Has anyone who is in withdrawal and currently med free experienced having their memory improve, only to have it worsen later on?

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scallywag

TweetyRose - what you describe is exactly the pattern of windows and waves.

 

See also: Delayed onset of symptoms .

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Junglechicken

I don't know if my experience typically follows the windows and waves pattern. I tend to get stressed or "rattled" as I call it by external events which then set of a cascade of stress responses in my body - this Is manifested almost entirely by serious muscle tension in my body. This tension will last in my body for days until I remove it either by going for a swim (sometimes will require a few sessions) or having a massage. While the tension remains in my body, no amount of positive thinking will improve my mood, it will remain low until I expunge the tension from my body. There's a strong reciprocal relationship between the body and mind I find.

This I can relate to.

 

If I am in a window, and I get hit with stress......then that stress will "trigger" a wave of back to back symptoms/or a number of concurrent symptoms. I have experienced this "trigger" effect twice now since reinstating this time last year.

 

It's like a bomb going off in my CNS.

 

As we haven't had the money coming in, I haven't been able to get to an osteopath to reduce the muscle tension in my body, so it's remained there; and I have remained in pain. The mind/body correlation is spot on.

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GirlfromD

Is it possible to after almost a year, to hit a wave that is very hard! I have hit something, with anxiety etc. can't be around anybody at the moment, is bedridden all day, and my heart i pounding all day too and many other things, this wave is as bad as in the beginning  maybe even worse, so im worried! Is this possible after almost a year?? I can't funktion.

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JP904

Girl from D. I hate to hear you have hit a tough wave. From what I've read, this is definitely possible. CNS doesn't heal for a long time and stressful events can trigger symptoms. Did you have any stressful events happen to cause the wave of anxiety? 

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GirlfromD

Yes i was going to celebrate christmas with my family but i got some panic attacks (i do that when theres a lot of family) and had to get away home, so i actually didnt celebrate chrismas at all. But this thing i feel like have been building up since last month, this wave feels like those i the beginning. Do i have to start all over again, or can i continue where i was when this is over? This is very hard. Could this take very long? I just hope not.

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LexSuks

I've maybe had maybe 2 windows since this almost 4 months off lexapro started . Previous waves I was able to deal with eventually but what I'm going through now is the worst . Feel like a stranger to myself , kinda feel like I'm in a dream , have anxiety about going anywhere. Pretty much lost interest in almost everything except for the withdrawals I'm going through , everything seems a lil strange to me . And in previous waves I still felt kinda like myself but now seems like my emotions n thinking is completely gone or pretty off . Pretty much feel like my personality n what makes me me is gone . Anyone else have a wave like this and get through it . I know waves are temporary but this has gone on for a lil over a week now n it worries me

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Lawyerliz

See my review of Deep nutrition. Avoid sugar and veggie oils. Eat olive.oil!

 

Read book.

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Lawyerliz

Vegetable oils can hurt the brain. READ Deep nutrition!

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Lexy

How do you know if you are in a wave or wd symptoms from a decrease of a micro taper?

Also after a wave can one go back to the state one was prior to wave? I had been slowly getting better before this deep depression hit me again.

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ShakeyJerr

What do people do when a HUGE anxiety wave hits? Mine was so bad this mroning that I almost woke my wife to take me to the ER. But what would they do for me there but give me some meds? What help would that be? Sure, I might get an in-the-moment relief from them, but wouldn't I just have put myself back on the merry-go-round?

 

SJ

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peng

Anyone withdrawing slowly from Effexor had one of those big windows where you suspect:

i - you are being a bit manic

ii - getting involved with lots of projects and doing stuff and relishing it

ii - maybe talking too much?

 

Since my last reduction (-9.1%) a few days ago to 125mg Effexor, I have felt that way.  We may move house, so adrenaline is flowing and it is not depressing me, but stimulating me to do a lot of decluttering (after 40 years in this house).

Maybe this is a flavour of what I should be like?

I suspect not.

I do remember feeling this way about 10 years ago when I dropped to nil Effexor after reducing the dose steeply and not the way SA advises, but with the oft reported "feeling fine during withdrawal" experience.

I was hit by crunching WD and soon ended back up at 150mg, then more.

 

I now know to stall reduction if feeling bad, but what if you feel more up?

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ShakeyJerr

 

 

I find myself waking around 5am also, Bluebird. I used to love mornings. I was always a relatively early riser. I loved being awake before my wife and kids and just relaxing with some reading. Now mornings are a trial for me. 1 of the things I do is try to float through my anxiety instead of fight it. It's the Claire Weekes approach. 

 

Read more here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/10964-the-dr-claire-weekes-method-of-recovering-from-a-sensitized-nervous-system/

 

And breath!

 

SJ

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Pepita

I can fully confirm the describes waves and windows pattern. Luckily I documented a few month going into WD and when I feel

horroble again and tend to think that this will never end and never gets any better I read some

of my old logs ans can defenitely see an overall improvement. Still I get very frustrated from

time to time when symptoms worsen and I get this feeling of losing so mich time and "wasting" so many years with this very upsetting circumstances. I am about 1,5 years off drugs now. My windows became longer, but my waves are also still quite long-lasting. After going into WS I felt abaolutely horrible for about 6-8 months straight with only hours or days of uplifting. then I had a longer window for 3 months since then its more wavy again and I am sort of desperately waiting for my next window. What I find most upsetting is the total intolerance to ANY sort of stress- be it physical exercise, work or private/family issues. The smalles issues are like huuuuge rocks in my way and I am always hoping that nothing major stressful will soon cross my way. I know no two persons and healing time is the same but among those who have been in longterm protracted withdrawal - does this get sort of significantly better after 3-5 years of waves/windows? or do you aaaaaalways have to walk like on egg shells?

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Nena59

 

Thanks guys,

I wish there was a way to get the cortisol out of my system! I hate this.

I also get tingling in my legs and I'm pretty shaky in the morning. I used to love to sleep...sometimes nine hours a night.

Hi Nena59, I'm glad to talk to someone how has came off long term Prozac. I am 10mtha off now and have awful anxiety and tingling, I wake at 5am every morning with crippling anxiety. I would like to start my med again to get rid of this but my system has became so sensitised that I can't tolerate even a tiny dose. Please keep me up to date on how you cope and any methods for the anxiety. I'm having acupuncture which is keeping me health but not helping anxiety. I had reflexology on Fri and was really ill with flu type aches and pain yesterday but that has gone today. Take care. xx

 

Hey Blue bird,

I have a new counselor and he gets all this! He even explained to me how the brain is trying to heal!

Anyway, he got me involved in mediation. There is a free and awesome course called palousemindfullness.com. I have had pretty bad anxiety and after doing this for 5 weeks I think it has helped. I can breathe through the worse most of the time and bring myself out of it. I hope this helps.

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Nena59

I can fully confirm the describes waves and windows pattern. Luckily I documented a few month going into WD and when I feel

horroble again and tend to think that this will never end and never gets any better I read some

of my old logs ans can defenitely see an overall improvement. Still I get very frustrated from

time to time when symptoms worsen and I get this feeling of losing so mich time and "wasting" so many years with this very upsetting circumstances. I am about 1,5 years off drugs now. My windows became longer, but my waves are also still quite long-lasting. After going into WS I felt abaolutely horrible for about 6-8 months straight with only hours or days of uplifting. then I had a longer window for 3 months since then its more wavy again and I am sort of desperately waiting for my next window. What I find most upsetting is the total intolerance to ANY sort of stress- be it physical exercise, work or private/family issues. The smalles issues are like huuuuge rocks in my way and I am always hoping that nothing major stressful will soon cross my way. I know no two persons and healing time is the same but among those who have been in longterm protracted withdrawal - does this get sort of significantly better after 3-5 years of waves/windows? or do you aaaaaalways have to walk like on egg shells?

Pepita,

I am the same way. I have been waving a lot lately. I'm not as bad or good as in the recent past, I'm more not getting the highs and lows. I get into a window, weak, but a window just the same and something that should be a little stressful comes up and wham, a drop in mood and anxiety. I feel like I should be in a mattress filled room. I'm off for 7 months.

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Pepita

Hi Nena59, I tried to quote but somehow I always end up quoting everything, including my original Text that you quoted so I am going to stick with @Nena for now:D
wow 20 years of medication (what is it SSRI?) ..that is really a very long time. Off 7 months, congratulations! Even if it feels really horrible - I came to the conclusion that it´s still better if you´re not poisoning your system any more.
I just wished that the healing process would be easier. And more consistent. A few weeks ago I even went to so some freelance work in another office (another than my own where I can luckily work from most of the time)...and now I feel like being back on ground zero.
I mostly stay very positive but DAMN THIS SUCKS! Had to be said once :))

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Nena59

Hi Nena59, I tried to quote but somehow I always end up quoting everything, including my original Text that you quoted so I am going to stick with @Nena for now:D

wow 20 years of medication (what is it SSRI?) ..that is really a very long time. Off 7 months, congratulations! Even if it feels really horrible - I came to the conclusion that it´s still better if you´re not poisoning your system any more.

I just wished that the healing process would be easier. And more consistent. A few weeks ago I even went to so some freelance work in another office (another than my own where I can luckily work from most of the time)...and now I feel like being back on ground zero.

I mostly stay very positive but DAMN THIS SUCKS! Had to be said once :))

Pepita, 

So sorry you are not well now.

I took prozac and wellbrutrin. I don't think that I ever really needed them either. I was going through a really tough time in my life and I just needed to ride it out, but I took what I thought was the easy way out. I knew other people that took anti-depressants at the time and just figured that they were safe.

I am really trying to stay positive, thanks for the reminder. :D

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Pepita

@Nena - same here... I was going through a rough time, both personally and professionally. And it was hard- but nothing, not even close to the hell of withdrawal. Also Inwas inteoduced to SSRI at the age of 18 by a GP after a 10 minutes talk- due to mild panic attacks (which didn't hinder me at my studies), so I sort of was used to dealing with mental issues with medication. This wave came on so strong because my 13 year old cat was diagnosed with a huge tumor and will probably die rather sooner than later. This is a sad situation of course but the way this is hitting me is very very "withdrawal-style" :( and it reminds me of how far I'm still away from being 100% healed.

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