Still new to this and needing support

In brief, my story is that my constant dizziness (swaying) and heavy-headed feeling started 4 months ago and I went from an ENT to a neuro and was diagnosed with migraine. I tried propanolol and couldn’t tolerate it almost immediately so the doctor switched me to Topamax. I’ve been taking 25 mg for just under a week and it does seem to be helping a bit already without any major side effects so far…so I know that is a good sign and that based on much of what I’ve read here I may be relatively lucky if I’ve found a med that helps so soon and also just that my symptoms haven’t been completely disabling to me so far.

BUT…I am feeling really anxious and depressed. It’s so exhausting to keep coping with this day after day. I feel like I’ve been functioning at a small percentage of myself for so long now. I have two kids who are 6 and 3 and I’m also a teacher (thankfully off for the summer right now) and it feels particularly challenging to manage this kind of thing when I am in these roles where I’m required to be so present for others so much of the time.

How have you coped with the anxiety and depression that it seems must inevitably come along with this condition? I find myself sometimes thinking that I just can’t go on like this anymore. Although of course I do, but I just feel so discouraged sometimes. I feel like I might need to start taking an antidepressant too…I have taken Celexa before for anxiety and depression and it worked well for me.

I guess I am just looking for any words of support that anyone can offer. I know things could be so much worse, but I am finding it hard to keep my spirits up right now when it seems like I still have months of this ahead of me.

Thanks everyone,

As you say, anxiety and depression are pretty much inevitable with this condition - many of us take a tricyclic or a SSRI plus a benzodiazepam to help through the worst times. I can’t help with regard to what med is best with Topamax - a tricyclic or SSRI would both be OK so it’s probably down to what suits your brain/body best.
I’ve been on Dothep (tricyclic) for nearly 2 years which conquered the daily headaches & added Topamax six months ago to settle the balance/visual vertigo issues. I also take Ativan .5mg (benzo) when needed in extra stressful times.
Recently found that the 100mg Dothep I was taking been causing Anxiety & Depression & have reduced to 60mg which has got rid of the Anxiety & Depression! So weird!

I hope the Topamax works for you too - looking back in my diary I was struck by how often ‘exhaustion’ was written down! When you spend all day trying to stay balanced, to deal with a rocking head and mini spins plus the nausea, foggy brain, etc it’s no wonder we get anxious and depressed. So needing something extra to help is virtually a necessity to survive!

Also, we need to ask for help! This is not a time to be stoic and feel we can “do it all”. Because this illness is not one that is obvious to anyone else - no broken bones, no “cancer” name nothing that anyone else can really understand unless they are experiencing it too we need to help them understand so they can help us. That might be by printing off some of the material here on the forum or describing graphically what it feels like to have the world “moving” 24/7. Having some help with the children to give you a break to have a rest would also help. A daily diary is also a must -