It’s no secret that yours truly has been in a bit of a “funk” lately.
Actually, I hate myself for calling it a “funk.” A funk is when you’ve been waking up bizarrely bloated and just “don’t feel like yourself.”
What yours truly has been experiencing is not a funk — but rather a black depression that has turned me into a stuffed shell with no ricotta-cheese stuffing. A Cadbury cream egg void of the sugary goo inside. An apple pie with no apples. A festival girl with no festival. (Read more about my experience with the lovely “Prozac Poop Out” phenomenon here). In short: I feel dead inside.
However, this isn’t this girl’s first time taking a ride down the highway la dépression. And as much as I’m fueled with the desire to call out sick from life and spend the pending weeks playing “Gray Gardens” with my codependent pets — I can’t.
This bitch has a job. She needs to make money. It’s goddamn Pride month and she’s been booked for speaking gigs.
As bleak as this depressive episode feels — I don’t want to toss the opportunities I’ve worked so hard to cultivate into the East River, just because the sad beast broke down my front door. I refuse to let that fuckwad win because I know, I’m stronger than him.
And while there are definitely times that it’s BEYOND ok to take a leave of absence from work or go check out into a lil’ clinic (aka mental ward) when shit gets super-duper dark — sometimes you just know you can fight through it. And I know in the deepest pit of my probiotic-filled gut — that this battle I shall win. Purr.
So here’s what I’m doing to keep my head above water when all I want to do is lay down and drown!
1. I changed up my meds.
I truly hope at some point in my life I will be able to heal myself holistically. In fact, I’ve become obsessed with trying to veer away from all things Big Pharma and have been vivaciously studying Ayurveda (the world’s oldest holistic whole-body healing practice). In the past year, I’ve completely detoxed myself off of prescription stimulants and benzodiazepines.
But now is not the time to break it off with antidepressants. I’m not ready for that. Not yet.
So when my Prozac suddenly stopped working after several successful years, I decided to take immediate action. I traipsed into Dr. FeelGood’s Gramercy Park office and he switched me from 20 mg Prozac + 300 mg Wellbutrin to 20 mg Viibryd + 150 mg Wellbutrin (we went down in Wellbutrin because it was possibly exacerbating my crippling anxiety).
I’ve been dating Viibryd for eight solid days so far and we have yet to fall in love. It usually takes about two weeks for me to know whether my antidepressant and I are a good match for a longterm relationship.
However, I do take great mental relief in knowing that it’s only a matter of weeks before she’ll likely build up in my system and I’ll feel better again! That in of itself makes this depressive episode feel far more bearable!
So babes. Kittens. Sad girls. Depressed Bois. If your meds aren’t working, if your depression is crippling, if you feel like dog shit baking on a Manhattan sidewalk in the thick of August, all the time: Call your doctor.
You don’t have to live like this.
2. I keep reminding myself that the bad feels are temporary.
When you’re stuck in the darkest depths of a black depression you’re blinded to even the slightest glimmer of light. Darkness is endless, you know? When you’re in a depressive episode it’s easy to feel like you’ll be stuck, blindly clamoring your way through the pitch black tunnel walls forever.
But we all must remember that everything is temporary. Especially feelings. We are not going to feel the way we feel right now forever.
And when we finally do crawl out this hellish rabbit hole and lay our feet onto the soft goddamn SOIL and feel the SUN beating against our faces — we’ll appreciate the beauty in everything so much more than we did before we spiraled out.
And that almost makes these harrowing depressive episodes worth it. Almost.
3. Restorative Yoga!
I’m a vain bitch who likes to “not waste time wahh” at the gym — so normally I scoff at activities such as restorative yoga. I don’t want to leave a workout feeling restored, I want to leave with muscles, bruh.
How thick-headed I’ve been! Restorative yoga is an unbelievable tool for well-being.
Here’s how I got into it: I’ve been feeling way too fragile to step into a dude-filled Equinox situation and sweat next to a slew of picture-perfect models and flawless fitness gays with abs for days. So on a whim, I went to a gentle flow restorative yoga class at Yoga Works in Soho.
Holyshit, that class helped take the edge off the bad feels! The movements are designed to relieve stress, the vibe was super nurturing, they played meditative music and for the first time, in as long as I can remember: I felt at peace. I felt like I was in the womb, I felt so safe. During some of the stretches, I quietly wept just from the emotional goddamn release! I’m one downward dog away from a full breakdown, baby. Aren’t you?
4. I am forcing myself into a positive morning routine even if it’s the last thing I want to do.
Even though I’ve been wanting to hide beneath the covers all day, not shower, not brush my teeth or hair or put on clothes — I’m forcing myself to partake in a morning routine. And honestly, having a set routine when you’re really depressed is temporary liferaft to normalcy.
You don’t need to make decisions when you have a set schedule and sad girls can’t make decisions! It’s too exhausting. Plus, a routine gets you out of bed, sister. Which is the hardest part of a depressed person’s day, amirite?
Zara’s Depressed Morning Routine.
1. Wake up at 5AM. I read once that it’s good for drug addicts to “wake up before their addiction” and personally I think it works for depression too! Getting up before the sunrise centers me.
2. Scrape tongue. Tongue scraping helps to detoxify the body and when we’re sad we need to detoxify those forlorn blues away, you know? Use a copper one and buy it on The Dirty Beauty Amazon shop.
3. Wash the meds and vitamins down with 20 ounces of water. (Fun Fact! When you’re stressed out you dehydrate faster).
4. Meditate to this guided meditation.
5. Dry skin brush. (Gets the circulation moving around, the blood flow going — which makes you feel more awake and alive! Shop it The Dirty Beauty Amazon shop!).
6. Shower and then blast self with freezing cold water for at least thirty painful seconds! It puts you right into fight or flight mode so it gives you a BURST of wild energy, which is so needed when you feel slow and sad and drab!
7. Go outside and walk the dog for twenty minutes. Holyshit vitamin D from the sun really, really helps. Plus the sunlight helps keep your circadian rhythms in order, so you’ll sleep better.
8. Drink a giant organic coffee with a ton of supplements inside of it, whilst listening to Mozart. Listening to Mozart helps increase dopamine in the brain! And a depressed person’s brain is likely to be deficient in dopamine.
9. Tidy up whilst listening to Mozart because being depressed with a messy house is quite possibly the saddest thing ever.
10: FINAL RULE: Do not look at phone until morning routine is complete. Waking up to the phone is TOXIC shiat.
5. I take the following supplements, religiously.
1. Four Sigmatic Lion’s Mane (a natural mushroom that helps increase focus, take first thing in the morning, toss into coffee or hot water). Click here, use my code “AnxieTEA” for a 10 percent discount.
2. Four Sigmantic Reishi (a natural mushroom that helps calm you down. They describe it as “a warm hug from Grandma.” Take before bed in hot water). Click here, use my code “AnxieTEA” for a 10 percent discount.
3. Foursigmatic Cordyceps (a natural mushroom that improves energy. Toss into coffee or hot water. Really good to get you motivated to go to the gym. Click here, use my code “AnxieTEA” for a 10 percent discount.)
4. Ashwagandha: An ~amazing~ adaptogen that works as a natural stress reliever. Can also assist in weight-loss if you’ve put on stress weight because your cortisol is running sky-high. (Click here to shop this product at The Dirty Beauty Amazon shop.)
5. Turmeric: Cures basically all alignments, in particular, inflammation. Which is so important because so much of our serotonin actually comes from the gut. So if the gut is inflamed so is the brain! I like to drink mine in hot water. (Click here to shop this product at The Dirty Beauty Amazon shop).
There are MANY more, I’ll do a whole post on sadness supplements soon, depressed dolls.
6. I’ve been getting COZY AF.
I’m keeping my days as busy as possible, but also prioritizing the ole’ downtime. Come 6 PM I’m in my pink satin striped PJs devouring a memoir written by a fabulous woman who went through a dark time and came out the other side, better than ever! Nothing makes me feel more human and more grounded than reading, babe. Plus a nice little escape from reality is rather lovely when you’re sad, don’t you think?
What are your depression remedies? Message me!