Hey SHAPE Warriors. This is probably the most vulnerable thing I’ve done in a while, but I had something pierce my heart while working this week, and I felt like this was just too important not to share.
I suppose my story starts when I was diagnosed with depression in 2014, about six months after my son was born. I’d probably had depression for many years prior, but with a new baby, I wasn’t able to use my usual coping technique, which was to not talk to anyone or do anything for 48 straight hours once a month. I worked at a health food store at the time, and my dad is Dr. Todd Frisch, so I tried literally everything that existed to naturally treat my symptoms. I spent hundreds of dollars on herbs and supplements, all of which barely took the edge off of my lethargy, apathy, anxiety, anger and sadness.
I am very fortunate that suicidal thoughts and tendencies were never part of my symptomatology, but I still needed help, so I found a doctor and started taking a prescription antidepressant. I also began working with a life coach (SELF ReClaimed wasn’t available yet), started on the SHAPE ReClaimed program. I think the trio of treatments (medication, life coaching and SHAPE) was the key to my physical and emotional success. And, as a bonus, I released all the baby weight and then some!
The bummer with depression for many is that medications don’t work 100% of the time. So, while the next few years were filled with many highs, I also experienced many lows, or depressive episodes. For me, being happy takes effort. I have to really commit and dedicate brain space to be content, calm, peaceful and happy. It just doesn’t come naturally. That’s what makes the next part of this story particularly difficult.
At the beginning of 2017, I had emergency surgery to remove my right ovary after 48 hours of excruciating pain due to undiagnosed ovarian torsion. To put the pain into context, I gave birth unmedicated, and it was a 7 on the pain scale compared to this. Also, I was 10 weeks pregnant. A month after the surgery, I found out I was miscarrying. Because I had already racked up thousands of dollars in medical bills, I opted to not have the D&C procedure. This was absolutely the wrong choice, and I ended up in the emergency room for a third time in two months only to have yet another surgery. (This is the short version of the story. You can read the long version on my personal blog.)
So, I already was struggling to be happy on a good day, when all my organs were present and functioning, and I hadn’t just lost a baby. Now, I had a reason not to be happy. I spent the next nine months in a deep, deep depression. My medication made it possible for me to exist, but not much more than that. And I was so angry at my body for not working that I punished it by eating whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. This certainly didn’t help.
At the beginning of this year, 2018, I was starting to feel some life and light come back. I was still taking the antidepressant and I began working on a project I was super passionate about that eventually turned into my job here at SHAPE Central. I got to move back home (I was living in southeast Idaho previously) to be close to my family and do a job I feel like I’ve been preparing for my whole life. Sounds like a recipe for happiness, right? Well, yes and no. On the outside, everything was perfect, but on the inside, the cloud of depression was still hanging around.
SHAPE ReClaimed released a new product in February 2018 called MOOD ReClaimed, which was designed to support emotional balance. You’d think I would have started taking it immediately, but I’d been so jaded by supplements in the past that I just assumed MOOD ReClaimed wasn’t for me. During the worst of the depression, I pretty much stopped taking everything except the antidepressant, then I’d take a couple of capsules of MOOD ReClaimed here and there, but was never really consistent.
When I found myself living my dream life but still feeling “off,” I figured, why not give it a real shot? I’d heard some good feedback about MOOD ReClaimed from some coworkers and other practitioners, so I started taking three capsules of MOOD ReClaimed per day, every single day. The changes were subtle at first, but after just a month, I realized how much more relaxed I’d been. I was less persnickety with my family. I was able to compartmentalize my stuff while I was at work. I was quicker to laugh. I wanted to play with my son, to be outside and to clean my house. Just last weekend, I spent three whole days being happy with little to no effort. This hasn’t been my reality in more than a year, and it feels amazing.
For the first time in my entire adult life, I’ve found a supplement that actually works, that actually improves my mood and helps me feel more like myself. Since I started taking MOOD ReClaimed, I feel like I have the ability and power to handle my emotions, and even when I do get down, I remember that it’s only temporary.
Do I feel perfect all the time? No. I still get overwhelmed, and I still overthink everything, but my life has improved dramatically. With my doctor’s supervision, I was even able to cut my medication in half. (Note: This was simply my experience. MOOD ReClaimed should not be considered a replacement for medication. Always talk to your prescribing physician and SHAPE practitioner before changing your regimen).
If you struggle with a condition that affects your emotional well-being, then you probably know how much it can affect you physically. The two go hand-in-hand. MOOD ReClaimed could be an excellent addition to your SHAPE ReClaimed journey. And if you’re not following the SHAPE ReClaimed protocol but are still looking for something to help you feel a little more like yourself, a little lighter and a little happier, consider giving MOOD ReClaimed a try. You literally have nothing to lose, and for me, it just works.