Wednesday, May 2, 2012

It's a little bit like that terrifying mouse roller coaster at Lagoon

A couple years ago I started taking Paxil (see previous post for reason why) to help me get out of bed and take care of my kids and not kill someone or myself and on and on. I have this to say about selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors:


I needed it about 7 years ago when I had postpartum depression that turned into regular 'ol depression then into homicidal, home wreckin' lunacy. Yeah. That happened.
Fast forward to the day after my 31st birthday. I love the strange birthday connection. 
It went something like this:

Dr. Jones: looks like you've been going at this for about two years. What do you think about...
Dr Jones: GEEZ! Get a fucking grip, lady! 
Dr. Jones: The only way to know is to try.
Dr. Jones: Maybe you need something a little stronger, PSYCHO!

Ok really. I was scared and Dr. Jones (in his infinite wisdom) told me that I could go back on it if it turned into a disaster and that made everything better. We made this really tricky weaning plan that had something to do with serotonin sickness and Jedi mind tricks. He assured me that my friends and family would DEFINITELY tell me if I needed to get back on it. The Weather Bunny promised that she would tell me if I was being a whack-job and that she would be right there waiting for me when I got over hating her for calling me crazy. Jennie and Greg (team of therapists. not joking. i like therapy and believe in voodoo doctors) would support me if it got hard. Bri promised she would point and laugh when I cried over lambs. (I did it to her so I deserve it)

Here I am. 3 weeks in. It has been uneventful for the most part. I have not done anything that is alarming to anyone and I have not felt like I couldn't lift my arms or get out of bed at any point! YES! YES! YES! I'm doing it!

There have been weird physical withdrawal symptoms, a little bit of yelling and a whole lot of crying. It all seems pretty normal! The best part of it is that I KNOW that I'm going to be ok. I can laugh at my crying and I can look at myself and say: That is reasonable, that is crazy talk, that is being creepily codependent, those are terrible boundaries, that is a great place to be vulnerable, that is not about you, it's ok to cry about lambs and Peregrine Falcon eggs but it's not ok to obsess about one person's raised eyebrow or lack of returning phone calls. YOU, Sarah O'Dell, ROCK! In and of yourself regardless of how anyone else behaves. 

Now to the best part where you get to laugh and point about my withdrawal:

I have a lot of tears in there and they are mostly those happy or deeply touched tears. Not sad tears. 
I have cried TODAY about Peregrine Falcons, Jamie, Warren, 3 songs, and an old blog post. It's only noon.

I diagnosed myself with Restless Leg Syndrome at 4am this morning. Thank you WebMD for fueling the imaginations of hypochondriacs everywhere. 

I added TuneWiki to my Spotify apps so I could sing sad songs really loudly and sing the right words.

Funny crazy roller coaster ride. Not so bad. Thanks for the fun, Paxil. See you on the flip side!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Remember This?

Our challenge. Does anyone want to do it again.?

I went to the doctor today. OH. MY. GAWD. Gross. I am a happy girl these days and you know what they say! Fat and Happy!

Are you in? I'm a girl who needs accountability.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The First Point Of Aries

It's here, it's here! Spring is here! My favorite time of the year. I could wax poetic about rebirth and new beginnings but I give you this picture instead. Right in my backyard the trees went from bud to bloom in just one day and my plum trees look amazing!
The vernal equinox is also known as The First Point Of Aries and I think you know what that means?!
IT'S MY BIRTHDAY! I like to celebrate birthdays for a while so I have decided that The First Point of Aries will mark the beginning of my birthday. That would mean that my birthday doesn't end until the First Point of Libra (Autumnal Equinox). I think I will spare you the non-stop partying/gift-giving and it's subsequent liver and wallet damage and end my birthday with a culmination party on April 14th. Costumes will be worn! Will you come?

Thursday, December 22, 2011


I wrote a letter to myself as an assignment for a class. It was pretty broad but I knew exactly what I wanted to write about as soon as the assignment was given. I won't share the whole thing here but I want to share a bit of it and for a reason.

Bri has this annoying little habit of reading me all of the shocking or depressing news going on in Boise and it sounds something like this, "Whoa! These people...bla bla bla....dead hooker and coke." I never read that stuff and not because I'm not interested in the news (I am) but it seems more like tabloid fodder and less like news. So today...After the 5th crazy news story Bri looked up and said, "It seems like between Thanksgiving and like right after Valentine's Day people are just crazy." I say "Bla bla bla..statistically..bla bla...making shit up...yeah. Holidays are prime crazy time."

Huge slightly irrelevant story and now to the point: The Holidays are prime crazy time and not just for people who like to kill hookers and do coke. It's crazy time for a lot of people. I am on large amounts of drugs to curb my crazy and December still makes me nuts. December made me sad today. Really sad. Because I thought about those crazy people and how a lot of us are on the verge of doing something really stupid to dull the pain/feel the pain/make someone else feel the pain. No, I'm not going on a tri-state killing spree but I do know what it's like to feel so desperate that you do things that are downright INSANE!

Ok. Stop me. Here's the letter. I think it speaks for itself.

A letter to myself on my 25th birthday. April 10, 2006

Dear Sarah,

I know that you are so sad right now. I know that you feel really desperate. You envisioned things for your life that were exciting and adventurous. You envisioned a relationship that fulfilled you in beautiful, meaningful ways. I know that you are going to go out in the backyard when the kids are napping and scream at the top of your lungs. It will only make you feel worse. I know that you sometimes feel so depressed that you can’t even lift your arms to put the dishes away. I know that when he gets home you will walk into the bedroom, crawl into bed and stay there until he calls you in to kiss the kids good night. You will go back to bed and lie there until he comes in. When he does, you will silently cry. You will move further away and just wish that he would reach out to you and tell you that he loves you. He won’t.
Tomorrow, the day after your 25th birthday, something will happen that you think is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Later you will make the biggest mistake of your life. It will not make you feel better. Not that day, not ever, and it will end your life as you know it. You will begin to blame your husband for the depression you feel. You won’t reach out to him and he won’t reach out to you. You won’t tell anyone. You won’t get help. Even when it gets so bad that you can’t get dressed anymore. You will live silently. Raging.

There is just one thing that you can do, right now.

On the day of your 25th birthday you can stop what hasn’t started.

Please do exactly what I tell you to do: Get up. Put the kids in the car and drive to your parents’ house. Go inside and find your mom. Ask her to watch the kids for a little while. She will do it. If she asks you why, you tell her that you are going to get help before you can’t go back. She will understand. She has seen this coming for a long time. Drive to your husband’s shop and go up to his office. Sit across from him and look in his eyes. Please don’t look away. He has to know how serious you are.
Say this, “I love you. I want to have a relationship with you. Right now I am so depressed that I’m scared for my life.”

He will tell you that he loves you. He does want to be with you. He will cry when he says it.
Leave his office and go to your doctor. Even if you have to go to the emergency room. DO NOT let this go on for one more day. THIS IS AN EMERGENCY! You are not being dramatic! Get help now!

Dr. Jones will send you to Jennie and you will spend the next 6 weeks in therapy everyday. You will get medicine that pulls you out of that dark void. You will start to see the real light at the end of the tunnel.
Your husband will go with you sometimes. It will be hard. You have to say what you feel. You have to lay yourself open and tell him how scared you are. You have to ask the hard questions and listen to the answers. When he disappoints you (he will) do not quit. Please be vulnerable. PLEASE! Tell the truth. Tell him that you have been terrified since the day you told him you were pregnant with Olivia. Tell him that you feel invisible. Please tell him that you love him. Don’t start a fight to cover up how you feel. Don’t be tough.

I don’t know what will happen after this. If you do what I told you to do then the future is a mystery. An unguarded one. A truthful one.

But I do know what happens if you don’t.

Your husband will find out. You will finally go to Dr. Jones and Jennie but it will be too late. If you thought what you were going through was hell, you were sadly mistaken. What happens next is the real inferno. You will spend a year fighting and crying and begging. You will beg him to come back. He won’t. You will tell him that you love him. It doesn’t matter anymore. You will lie in bed at night (in your parents’ house because you don’t have one anymore) and you will torture yourself with your mistakes. Your girls will cry to “come home” and they mean the place where both their mom and dad live. It doesn’t exist anymore.

When he finally gets a beautiful, blonde and thin girlfriend and introduces your kids to her you will wish you were dead. When you meet her you will wish she were dead. You will endlessly compare yourself to her.

You will finally give up. You will finally begin the grueling process of divorce. It will start out amicable. You’ll have long talks about what each of you need. You’ll be hopeful that your kids will be ok. You’ll move into a cute rental in the north end and feel like you may survive this after all.

He will fire you. It will not be so amicable anymore. You will have to fight to keep any shred of the life you once had. You will shelter your kids from the fighting. You will shelter them from your desperation. You will spend hours at the attorney’s office. You will spend hours going through mountains of papers. You will go back and forth between walking away and fighting with all you have. You will have to sell your car to pay your lawyer half of what you owe her. In the end (2 years after the day he found out) you’ll choose some stupid halfway point on the scale of walking and fighting and you will have to start your life over. This will cost you 10,000 dollars in attorney fees alone and you will have NOTHING.

This is not the path you should choose.
I know that today, on your 25th birthday, you feel like it is his fault. You feel like the only answer is to run away. It isn’t the answer. Only you can fix this. Stop right now.
It is possible to not feel the way you do today. Please get help.

With only the love that you can give yourself,
Your 30-year-old self

Sunday, November 20, 2011

I'm a Crafty Bitch!

A Batman cape for Chance
Leaf and Bow Cuffs for a sweet co-worker

A garland for my tree!

Upcycled Sweater for Dagmar
Scarflet for a sweet nurse.
Upcycled sweater for Leah

Bri and I were crazy crafters all day yesterday and today. It was Bri's first foray into sewing and she did some hard stuff! Bias tape, buttonholes, cuffs! She was determined and her stuff turned out so cute!

More to come next week!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Gardening Into Winter

Even though we are wrapping up the last of the summer garden I am still gardening in my head! We are thinking, planning and preparing for next spring:

>We have plans to make a little grow house and canning kitchen in the big shed.

>Maybe when we get a little tougher and stop crying over dead chickens we will add a meat chicken chicken coop for those temporary ones. The more I learn about industrial food proccesses I get less icked out about raising our own meat.

>There are still brussell sprouts, kale and onions out in the garden. They like the cold weather.

>There are fall greens that Bri planted about a month ago. Yum!

>Up until a few days ago our tomatoes were still flowering and producing more tomatoes! Crazy weather.

>We are composting everything we can get our hands on to amend the soil for a small orchard where there used to be a gravel driveway.

>Fence designs are being researched

>Flower catalogs are being drooled on

Happy Autumn Everyone!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

I have a little somethin' happenin'

This is my basement about a week ago

Friday, October 14, 2011

Keeps Me Moving

This helps me remember that it could never be fixed:

What kills love? Only this: Neglect. Not to see you when you stand before me. Not to think of you in the little things. Not to make the road wide for you, the table spread for you. To choose you out of habit, not desire, to pass the flower seller without a thought. To leave the dishes unwashed, the bed unmade, to ignore you in the mornings, make use of you at night. To crave another while pecking your cheek. To say your name without hearing it, to assume it is mine to call.

-Jeannette Winterson. Written On the Body.

This helps me remember that it's been worth it:

The minute you begin to do what you really want to do, it's really a different kind of life.

-R. Buckminster Fuller

This makes me UNBELIEVABLY happy:


Dad and I are so proud of you.

Love, Mom

-Pam O'Dell (my mom)

And this speaks for itself:

98/100 A :)

-Christine Moore (one of my professors)