Kurt Swensen's Blog
kurtswensen.com, Dr. Kristen Allott’s Fall Newsletter
A Plan for getting off antidepressants…………..
Jane markets software development. She is a 35-year old, “got it together,” professional woman. At least, that’s the way it seems on the outside. As a networking master, success flows easily for Jane, so easily she runs on automatic most days.
It’s those early-morning, mental, gymnastic sessions that are driving her nuts! Months of waking up at 3:00 AM with her mind racing in all directions from setting appointments with prospective clients that she has been wanting to see for two years to questioning if she wants to have Sam’s babies . . . or not . . . Jane is beginning to believe that Sam and she have a future together . . . She used last week’s early wake ups to work through the fact that she and Sam more than just like each other. They may be able to create a long-term relationship. Meanwhile, should I be thinking about children when I have a wild obsession with Doritos and dirty martinis? . . . Could that be why I’m gaining weight? . . . I’ll talk to Sam about this tonight. We’re meeting at the Matador in Ballard for . . Well . . . it began in my 20s. I was a vegetarian at the time . . About that same time, I began taking antidepressants . . . I’ve never been without them . . . Well, for not more than three weeks since then . . Could . . . Maybe . . . Hold it! Hold all those thoughts. And, hold this thought, too: I’ve got to get myself together.
For Jane, getting herself together means scheduling a yearly check up with her health care provider, seeing her therapist, and taking care of some unfinished matters that she has let ride for too long, like getting off the antidepressant.
Several weeks later, Jane’s health care provider encouraged her to consider seriously dropping 15-20 pounds, because of the history of diabetes in her family. In the same week, her mental health professional referred Jane to Dynamic Paths to assist her in getting off antidepressant medications. While taking the medications, Jane has noticed her body thickens and she experiences decreasing sex drive. Over the last few years, she has tried unsuccessfully to stop taking the antidepressants several times. Now seems the right time to focus on this issue again, given the positive nature of her relationship with Sam and the momentum building in Jane’s “getting it together” campaign.
Jane read the Dynamic Paths’ website. She noted the various services and spoke to Dr. Kristen Allott by phone. She discovered Dr. Allott and Heather Brummer provide similar assessments and new patient orientations. Jane decided to meet with Heather, who sees clients after work several evenings weekly. “I liked the idea of two people reading my screening results and consulting over my condition. Besides, my initial costs will be less, when I see Heather, and more within my “getting it together” budget.
Heather and Jane worked together on three occasions, and after some simple menu changes, Jane began sleeping through the night. She noticed she had more energy. Is the “getting it together” campaign working? she pondered. Well, . . . yeah! I can tell I’m changing and that is encouraging. Yeah! I’m even willing to do a little more in the way of exercising–just a little more.
At the end of their third meeting, Heather provided a lab slip from Dr. Allott. Heather explained that Dr. Allott wanted to be sure that Jane’s body was absorbing nutrients given her changes in food choices. “The lab work will allow us to answer this question.” Heather stated, “Do you have sufficient nutrients for making dopamine and serotonin before starting the weaning off process from the antidepressant?”
Jane’s next time at Dynamic Paths was with Dr. Allott to discuss the results of her lab work. Dr. Allott spelled out how Jane’s nutrient deficiencies had contributed to her overall fatigue and long-term depression. In that session, she asked permission to call Jane’s referring therapist to share the laboratory findings. They confirmed the mental health professional’s intuitions. Jane did need a stronger and healthier body as well as emotional support to reach her “getting it together” goals.
Jane returned again to the convenient evening times with Heather. Together they implemented the plan to strengthen Jane’s body. During this same period, Jane continued to see her therapist to talk through concern’s of Jane’s about marrying Sam and having children. The therapist also supported Jane as she learned to manage a broader range of emotions during the withdrawal from the antidepressant medication.
With the additional nutritional support, practical steps, and the encouragement from Heather and Dr. Allott, this time around Jane succeeded in reaching her health goals. Whatever comes next in life for Jane, she is ready.
EVENING CLINIC HOURS SHIFT to WEDNESDAYS & THURSDAYS Heather will be working with Dynamic Paths’ patients on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. These evenings are available for folks who require after-five scheduling. We welcome your call at 206.579.2757 to set an evening session that meets your particular needs.
ANTICIPATING THE HOLIDAYS? JOINS US AT THE MEET UP GROUP The Meet Up Group continues as faithful and enthusiastic members, reaching out and welcoming new participants on the first Wednesday of each month. These gatherings center on compassionate options regarding food and exercise. They are led by Heather Brummer at the Dynamic Paths’ facilities on 89th street in Seattle from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. We have space for you and an interested friend.
SCHEDULE FORECAST for DR. ALLOTT I will have 1-2 new patient openings in November. Please call me at 206.579.2757 and we’ll set a time convenient for you personally.
SHARING TOOLS for MENTAL HEALTH with FRONT LINE CARE NURSES What an event! On November 2nd, I will be presenting “Tools for Mental Health: Diet and Labs” to participants at the 36th Annual Advanced Practices in Primary and Acute Care Nursing Conference, being held in Seattle.
I find that exchanges such as this one can be eye-opening for those of us who, day in and day out, are doing the very best we can with patients who struggle with mental health disorders. I plan to come loaded with what I’ve learned about the usefulness of individualized food screenings and lab work ups to aid us in the selection of strategies that make a difference in the lives of our patients. If you are one of these nurses, I look forward to meeting you.
Best wishes for your good health,
Rain, The Cosmic Window, San Francisco, and gratitude.
November 19th in the Pacific Northwest usually means plenty of rain.
Right now Isabelle and I are just sitting in the dark listening to the rain outside. Really peaceful. Tonight I decided to turn my phone off and sit quietly. It was a good decision.
When we sit quietly we hear beyond the noise of life. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but the water landing on the roof and draining down the gutters is close to (if not better than) those fountains we buy for our homes and offices to bring us “peace.”
Sitting quietly with all electronics in the “off” position is pretty amazing. Join me??
Much Love to all, and, happy holidays. Everyone’s support of the show is amazing. I had no idea how important this podcast would become, and I am incredibly grateful and humbled for the opportunity to be a part of so many lives.
Above is “The Cosmic Window” by Narcissus Quagliata. It can be viewed at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco atop Nob Hill and across from Huntington Park. This image (and the park) has great meaning to me as it was an important part of Online Recovery Support’s episode 34, (recorded in 2009) and by far the most popular show I have done thusfar. For those of you who have not been with us that long, it is my personal story of healing, tears, and the releasing of pain. This was the turning point for myself and the show, following an exceptionally painful period in my life. While visiting San Francisco, I stepped more deeply into my truth, honesty, and Spirituality. I then became more willing to be ungaurdely vulnerable with anyone who was listening. After episode 34, we grew from a few thousand listeners, to over 100,000 listeners a week.
Be open, honest, and loving. Step into that which scares you, it is there you will find your freedom.
Again, my gratitude for all the support,
In a world of compromise, some don’t.
More “lost” episodes have been found!!
After posting episodes 14-50 and thinking we were done, my friend Gene pulls the true originals out of his collection. Gene saved episodes 4-13 with the exception of 5. So now, all that are missing are 5 and 30. 1-3 were discarded as practice pieces and episode 4 was the first real show. As I have mentioned before, the early shows have a very different feel than our recent programs but still have value and meaning. They are helpful, but in a more fundamental way. I think that listeners who are in the early stages of recovery will appreciate Gene’s work and contribution to the show.
Gene, as evidenced by his storage of these early episodes has been with us from the very beginning. Gene and I have exchanged emails and stayed in contact for more than three years and I am honored and grateful for his participation and support of the work that we do.
“The Lost Episodes” have become so popular that we are about to exceed our bandwidth for the month so as soon as we hit the new billing cycle we will offer either a new folder or figure out a way to place Gene’s contribution into the larger file. Either way, they should be available soon and I will let you know when that happens.
Much gratitude to all of you who have helped out in so many ways. It humbles me to know that we reach so many people and I am honored to be a part of so many lives.
Much Love, Kurt
“The Lost Episodes” and Happy 14th to Rob!!
During the migration and merging of ORS with kurtswensen.com we lost some of our data and certain shows produced a “file not found” message. With some help from my friend Brian we were able to restore them to the database in a 250mg zip file. The file contains episodes 14-50, for those who are interested in some of the earlier material. The shows have a very different feel than recent episodes but they all bring something a little different. 0 to 13 felt more like “practice” shows and were removed. 14 is where we started to get focussed, and somewhere around 30 is where I started feeling much more comfortable with what we were offering. Episode 34 is the most popular show by far and remains my personal favorite.
The download is free and can be stored in your Itunes library, on your desktop, or any place you have the room.
A repost from our friends at the2012scenario.com. Very cool……..
Follow up to previous
Powerful insight for addicts and alcoholics
Check this out.
Congratulations to our friend Angie…….
Not long ago, I listened to one of the archived ORS podcasts. In it
you told the story of leaving your job and “doing what was given to
you to do”. I have felt for many months now that I want to go back to
school, finish my graduate degree, and move forward in my nursing
career, but couldn’t fit it into my already packed schedule. Working
50+ hours a week and being on call 24/7 was not working for me and it
was hurting my spirit.
I have been meditating on this quandary, talking to my sponsor about
it, and praying to my higher power. Trusting the Universe’s plan, I
enrolled in classes this fall and planned on giving my resignation,
still unsure from where the money was going to come. Last night the
answer was unveiled. The necessary money has been given to me and I
can now move forward with what I know, in my heart, has been given to
me to do!
From our good friend Joshua……….
This is a brilliant example of much of what I talk about on the show, and how it works in our daily lives if we let it. My gratitude to Joshua for letting me share his words. Kurt
I have really been feeling acceleration lately and feel so grateful that it is bringing me Love and joy while many others are being met with confusion, frustration, and despair. I am especially amazed that where I used to have to ‘take the flashlight in to the dark corners’ to find what needs to be healed now shows up like a perfectly wrapped gift waiting on my doorstep each day. I used to feel afraid to open the box and find out what is inside but have now realized that it is the same perfect gift each time and no matter how many times I receive it, it never gets old: the gift is HEALING itself!