It's a long time since I've mentioned Churchill's black dog, his metaphorical beastie of choice that he used to describe depression or indeed my own inner hedgehog of depression . That's because Spike hasn't troubled me for ages. With the help of mindfulness and cognitive behavioural techniques I learned way along, it started to retreat and then the pills kicked in. Citalopram has been my drug of choice that finally kicked this debilitating illness into touch without any long lasting pesky side effects. I even functioned without relapse during 2012, my own annus horribilis. I was very careful to spell that right!
But yesterday I was summoned by my GP and as my life is going swimmingly at the moment she suggested quite assertively that I give stopping the pills a go. I've agreed to reluctantly. For the first time in ages as I drove away from the surgery another of my scary animals, the 'Tiger of Anxiety' stalked me from Ashburton to Totnes. I felt frightened contemplating a possible recurrence of symptoms of low mood, lack of concentration, constant panic and paranoic. Will the depression come back as I lower the dose in the interim period or when I stop the medication altogether? There's only one way of finding out if the nails really have been properly nailed into Spike's coffin so let's be brave and give it a go.