Dream or Reality – Written 4 years ago

Do you ever wake up in the morning and think, “Am I dreaming or is this real?” I have a twelve-year old son. He looks nothing like me but his personality is just like me. I have been divorced now for almost five years. His dad is remarried and I have a boyfriend. My boyfriend has a ten-year old son. About seven months ago, at thirty-nine years old, I found out that I am pregnant again. I am twenty-nine weeks and counting. It is another boy. I wanted a girl at first but I realize as time goes by that I am much better dealing with boys than girls. I have two nieces who are thirteen and sixteen. I love them like they are my own children but they are a handful.

I don’t know if it is pregnancy hormones, medication or another factor, but sometimes I wake up and I can’t distinguish if I am really alive or just living a dream. It reminds me of the movie “Jacob’s Ladder” with Tim Robbins. He goes through all these experiences and doesn’t completely understand what is going on in his life. It ends up that he was shot in war and has been living a dream until he actually passed away. I wonder sometimes if this is only a dream and there is an alternate reality somewhere.

I am a naturally anxious person and have been taking medication for it for 12 years. After my first son was born, I found my anxiety turning into panic and hyperventilation. I would be driving down the same road I drove every day. I would look up as if I was in a daze and realize I had no idea where I was. Had I reached the street I needed to turn on or did I pass it? That is when the panic set in and the hyperventilation started. I went to the doctor and he prescribed an anti-anxiety pill and eventually an anti-depressant. My coping skills weren’t working anymore. To tell the truth, I am not sure if they were ever working that well, but the pregnancy hormones exacerbated them.

For the first time in my life, I felt even in my brain. The medication I took was a serotonin balancer. I didn’t even know my serotonin was imbalanced but I found out very quickly what it was like to feel almost normal. As I look back, I realize that I probably have had an anxiety disorder with some Attention Deficit Disorder. I know I have a lot of the symptoms.  When I was hyper, I was over the top, impulsive, obnoxious hyper.  When I was down, I was downright angry and self abusive.

So here I am at thirty-nine and I am pregnant again. I tried to go off the medication, cold turkey, and that was the worst thing I ever tried to do. I had shocks of electricity going off in my brain and I would cry uncontrollably. The doctor gave me a very low dose of an anti depressant and that seemed to work for a while. However, my coping skills were still not quite right and I was getting angry all the time. I finally had a major breakdown and couldn’t stop crying. I asked the doctor if it was safe to increase the medication to the next dose and he did. Now I feel so much better.

Well, it’s a reality now. I still think my life is a dream sometimes but either way, I try to make it the best that I can.

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