Posted by: cg00n | September 12, 2009

A New Drug Habit

So there I was, feeling really great one day and not at all that great the next.  Maybe it’s not the extra prozac.  More likely it’s the periodic anxiety.  Here is how it seems to work for me:

High anxiety:

Unable to eat, nauseous, light headed, hot & cold (mostly clammy), jittery (rapid heartbeat, shakiness), prone to crying, trouble concentrating, worried (often about nothing in particular).

Moderate anxiety:

Jittery, maybe a little light headed or burpy.  No particular feelings of worry.

Neutral:

Nothing seems worth doing but otherwise feeling OK.  Dozy, unmotivated but fairly content to be a lump.

Low anxiety:

Moderately energetic, not too sleepy.  Feels like there are lots of possibilities for things that I want to do and enough energy to do at least some of them.

Very Low anxiety:

Positively upbeat.  Lots of energy, no desire to sleep.  Almost manic.

Today I started off in a moderate anxiety state and, over a couple of hours, took two half-clonazepam pills (each full pill == .5mg) which seems to have lowered the level to “low”, more or less.  I have to say that I can’t even imagine how much effort that would have taken to accomplish using willpower, mindfulness, meditation, cognitive therapy or whatever without the drugs.  P was commenting on how it seems as though my days tend to be about 20% good / 80% not-so-good and that this has been true for years.  Much though I hate popping pills to regulate my mood (especially potentially addictive ones) I think this is the practical solution, at least at present.

On the grand scale of mental illness I barely make it onto the bottom end.  Any mental problem that can be taken care of with such low doses of so few, relatively well-understood drugs really ought not to cause too much alarm.

I am certainly planning to keep up the meditation and mindfulness practice but I also anticipate being more relaxed about popping pills if my anxiety level seems to be creeping up above the “low” level.

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Responses

  1. Thanks for you honesty … there is much to be said for sharing, and learning from others, rather than everyone putting up a good front. The good front stuff ultimately creates islands where each deals with their own stuff but there is little support.

  2. I just want you to know that this post pushed me to finally go to my GP and admit all the anxiety I’m having. Turns out it’s all very physiologically based, and now I’m going to get treatment and feel better. That’s so encouraging to me! Why did I wait so long to admit it? I think because I was so down on myself for feeling bad. But that’s over now. Thanks again! You have no idea how you’ve changed my life with one simple motivation!

    -MM


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