Skip to main content

Prozac Monologues - Happy Anniversary!

Ten years ago I retired on a mental illness disability. It was a relief. It was dreadful. It was a heartbreak. And I was pretty sick.

Being a priest is a public job, and mine had been more public than most. So between retirement and the mental illness that led to it, I felt isolated and had a serious case of Who the hell am I, anyway?

But I sat down, signed up for a blog, wrote my first post, and there it was, my new life, Prozac Monologues: Reflections and Research on the Mind, the Brain, Mental Illness, and Society.

This is the place where I have recorded my learning about what happened to me: genetic variation, childhood trauma, wonky wiring, unhappy mitochondria, that broken internal clock... followed by misdiagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder, inappropriate antidepressant medication, a bit of psychiatric manipulation, a new diagnosis of Bipolar 2. And then recovery. Not cure, but recovery, as in the way I live the rest of my life.

It is where I have puzzled through philosophical issues about mental illness and its treatment, political issues about society's response, stigma/prejudice, the use of language, how art can soothe the savage brain, how mental illness comedy can give voice to what cannot otherwise be said.

It is where I have discovered psychiatrists and others whose work I admire: Ronald Pies, David Conroy, Hagop Akiskal, Jill Bolte Taylor, John McManamy, Nancy Andreasen, Nasser Ghaemi, and some others... not so much.

My readers have read my rants, my musings, and even my sermons. And some of you have made comments that told me I needed to keep going.

Which I did.

Thank you for that.

To mark the occasion, Prozac Monologues, the blog has been given a facelift. There may be a few more tweaks in the days to come. Actually, I'll invite you to make suggestions. Broken links have been removed from the Mental Health Break list on the right. I could use some new ones. What are your favorite videos and sites that would fit the category? Click the link for comments at the bottom of the post.

One more thing: Prozac Monologues: Are You Sure It's Just Depression -- promised so long ago in that first post will be coming to your local bookstore in September 2020! Published by She Writes Press, distributed by Ingram Publication Services, you can follow its progress on my author page. And Twitter, that thing into which authors are dragged kicking and screaming by their publicists (mine is JKS Communications), yes, I am on Twitter, too @WillaGoodfellow.

Again, thank you for reading. That will be my dedication in the book: I wrote this for you.


Comments

Popular Posts

Six Ways to Heal the Holes in Your Head

Prozac Monologues - A Book is Coming

The life of an author - this author anyway:

Mornings I work on finding my peeps. Twitter has been a revelation to me. I resisted it for years until I discovered what was possible. It's not all politicians and celebrities! I thought I was supposed to do Twitter because that's what you do when you want to sell books. That made me feel icky.

But then somebody reframed it for me:

There are people out there who have a question, a need, a pain point. Can I address their pain point? If so, how do they find me?

Those questions, posed by a webinar on search engine optimization (oh, brother!) went straight to my heart. They torched my author's conceit. If you are an author, you know that conceit - "I hate marketing. I just want to write."

Because I know my pain point. Boy, do I know my pain point. And I remember the day I typed into a search engine, "suicide." I found the website that became my lifeline, that told me I was not crazy. Well, crazy, but not alone. …

New Year's Resolution - Eat Chocolate! Or Maybe Not...

Long time readers may know of my over-a-decade-long effort to get the sugar monkey off my back. I can report that I am reasonably  successful. I don't know if it has made an ongoing difference to my mood. But a shared dessert at a restaurant will get my arthritic shoulder burning. So I keep it up.

Or maybe I have taken it too far. It's all about costs and benefits, you know. And recent research suggests maybe I should lighten up, or rather, darken up.

Chris Aiken of Bipolar Not So Much fame, also Wake Forest University School of Medicine and The Carlat Psychiatry Report, says to my sugar fast, Not so fast. At least as far as dark chocolate goes.

Dark chocolate lowers the risk of depression, according to a cross-sectional survey of over 13,000 US adults. The study compared self-reported chocolate consumption with self-reported depressive symptoms, as measured by the PHQ-9. People who ate dark chocolate in the past 24 hours were 70% less likely to report depression.

The effect w…