Friday, March 5, 2010
I'm considering a change in my anti-depressant. I'm now taking 50 percent more than the highest recommended dose of my current medication and I'm still fighting the blues on a daily, hourly basis. Hey, maybe something's not working. I haven't changed medications or dosages very often since my start with medication in 2001. I tend to stick with a drug and a dosage probably too long before I make a change. I know some people who change every 2-3 weeks because of the effects they have to live with - or cannot live with as the case may be. I wonder if a combination of two drugs might work better, two that work specifically on separate neurotransmitters. (I write that word as if I understand it. Ha!) I know that I need drugs that work on serotonin and norepinephrine (huh?) so a dual track strategy just might work. Hey, why not hope.
I have a pain in my left nipple. It's a small, sharp pain that I first felt about one month ago while I was showering. The more I press on the point, which is to the left and just above the nipple itself, the more it hurts. The tissue feels slightly harder than the tissue around my right nipple. I tell myself that this is an infection, although I have no idea how I would have gotten an infection there. More secretly I believe it is a tumor and that I'll require surgery and prolonged treatment and have a bad prognosis overall. This is how my mind and emotions work: disaster and damage control. This is why I take Ativan after working at the same job for almost six years: I still believe they are plotting to overtake, overwhelm and kill me. I don't know who I'd believe if I was told this wasn't true. I don't know how I would come to believe in my own safety. What part of the scientific method do I need to convince myself that I'm safe? What am I missing here? The gap of disbelief yawns before me.
On Monday morning I woke not knowing who I was or where I was. This has happened several times before and after the initial panic I begin to say a prayer to myself for balance and centering. After a bit - I don't know how long - I remembered that I was married and had a son. Then I recalled that I had a job, although I didn't know what my job was. Finally I remembered my name, my wife's name and my son's name. After that I was almost home free to safety, crawling slowly back to my life.
I wept at my counselor's office yesterday because I couldn't bear thinking about living with mental illness for the rest of my life. The difficulty and pain overwhelmed me. One morning I will wake not knowing who I am and I will not be able to find my way back to myself. I will remain outside, separate from myself always and forever. After I cried I decided that I needed something much bigger than myself in order to organize my life. Even bigger than my family. God, perhaps, or some sense of spirit and connectedness. Maybe the Universalist Unitarians have something I can agree with - agree in the sense of go along with. I want to journey with others. I can no longer do so much so often alone.