The thing no one told me about Lexapro was what it would do to creativity. I was told about the good things (its help with anxiety and depression) and the bad things (the sleepiness, fogginess, and difficulty reaching orgasm). But nothing about how it affected creativity.
I thought I was crazy at first. Maybe it was just fatigue or school? My head was already full with a million separate bits of information, hundreds of ideas swirling around, so maybe a blog post was one bit too many, a tax on the brain I could no longer afford to pay.
But then each time I thought of a blog post topic, and I started to put the first paragraph together in my head, my brain kept petering out of fuel. Zip, ziiip, ziiiiiiiiiiiip — blargh. It was the weirdest thing. I felt consumed with “why bother?”
I brought this up to my psychiatrist because it felt a bit odd, and I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I’d gone from writing blog posts several times a week to writing, well, none.
To my surprise, she nodded. Yes, quite a few of my patients have mentioned a loss of creativity on Lexapro, but there haven’t been any official studies, so there aren’t any hard facts about it. The pharmaceutical companies don’t really care about that side effect.
A quick run at Google will tell you that plenty of people do care about that side effect. Writers complain about a lack of interest in writing. Songwriters complain about a lack of interest in composing. But for the most part, people are happy about their ability to get out of bed, and so they are patient.
As am I. I am patient. I am happy about the freedom from anxiety I feel on Lexapro. I am happy not to wake up in the morning with a stomach in knots. I am happy not to remember when the last time I was that I needed a Xanax. I am happy to be able to accept invitations without worrying about them, worrying that the situation would somehow be more than I could handle. I am grateful for the extra patience Lexapro provides, for the way it lets me love again.
But I am waiting for that spark to return. I am waiting for the “yeah but so what?” and the “whatever” that dampens every blog post idea I have these days to wear off. Maybe one day I’ll be back to several blog posts a week, but for now, I’m doing what I can to put my pieces together, trying to figure out how to feel again properly without feeling too much.
This blog post is a step in the right direction.