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Pre-Eclampsia, postpartum depression, grapefruit, and why I'm going mad...

So, let's start with the pre-eclampsia part. When I first found out that I was pregnant, I knew nothing about pre-e. During my pregnancy, I heard about it, but still didn't know what it was or that I should be taking note of certain symptoms. So, during week 29 when I started feeling gall bladder pains in my back and chest, I didn't know that it could have been caused by the pre-e that was taking over my body. I did have to have my gall bladder removed three weeks post-delivery. Yes, I look like a pin cushion. My body suffered cruelly during that time. My placenta was poisoning myself and my baby. My kidneys and liver were all but shutting down and I nearly had a stroke... all before I realized anything was wrong. Then the word pre-eclampsia was attached, and I knew how serious it must be. Such a horrible word, with horrible stories on the internet, which we know is completely true in every way. Well, it turns out that when it comes to the horror of pre-e, it's pretty darn close. 

PPD: After having Lily at 30 weeks and coming to the realization that my baby and I would be separated by plexiglass for the better part of two months, I started pouring myself into whatever I could. I slept for only a few hours at a time, I rarely ate, and I worked 60 hours per week. I stayed as busy as possible, until I had a breakdown. Everything came flooding at once, and I recall standing in the shower night after night alone, crying out to God "why", and just letting the tears flow. Then the exhaustion set in and I felt worthless. I felt like I had done something wrong to have caused my baby to be in that box on all those tubes. I felt like I was inadequate that I could not carry my baby to term like so many others. It was an emotionally challenging time. I began having anxiety attacks where I could not sit or stand still, I would shake and feel as though my skin was crawling off of me. My doctor listened to me and looked at me for about two minutes and told me that I was suffering from post postpartum depression. NO, I thought. That's supposed to make you weepy and sad, not angry and having anxiety attacks. She prescribed an anti-anxiety/depressant medication for me, Zoloft, and told me to take some time off of work and just rest. My body had been through hell and I was not functioning properly. 

The Zoloft has been a miracle pill. As much as I hid it and denied that I needed the help, it's truly the only way that I have survived. I am now confident enough to admit that I needed, still need help moving forward from the trauma that I suffered. I am not a martyr, and am not a whiny person who looks for pity. This experience with Lily has been a serious trauma for me, and one that I do not take lightly. 

 

I read an article today about the dangers of eating grapefruit with certain prescription drugs.... including Zoloft... so I have now had to cut my favorite fruit and juice from my diet. I used to eat it quite frequently, but now, I must continue to refrain. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/17/grapefruit-is-a-culprit-in... 

In addition, an article on drugsdb.com gives an outline of the side effects of mixing the two. I had no idea I needed to be staying away from grapefruit. http://www.drugsdb.com/rx/zoloft/zoloft-and-grapefruit/. Kind of scary when you consider that the side effects could be worse than the symptoms to begin with for many drugs.

So, on to why I'm going mad... well, I can't eat grapefruit, I feel like I'm a little bit crazy because I've been through utter hell, and now the world around me seems to be going mad. The magic of the holidays is not what it was when I was younger, and I find recently that the pomp and circumstance, while fun and sparkly, is expensive and overrated. Yes, I have a Christmas tree, but that's pretty much it. 

PLEASE NOTE: I would love to hear from anyone else who has experienced pre-e and subsequent anxiety issues to see if this is common after such a trauma. If you or someone you know has experienced a similar situation, please leave me a comment!!!

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