Namo amitabha Buddhaya, y'all.
This here's a religious establishment. Act respectable.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Jen The Walking Pharmacy

Playing in the background: A D&D game. I'm just watchin'.

So how goes this living with bipolar disorder, you ask. Well, let me tell you. You'd think, having had this my whole life, I'd be used to it by now, but since I've only Officially Had It for a few months, it's a whole new deal. Evidently what happens when you have this is, they port you off to a psychiatrist and said professional tinkers with whatever meds you've been taking (providing you've been taking some) or gives you some to take (provided you haven't been taking some). If you're very lucky, you start feeling better immediately, stop crashing up and down on the ol' mood roller coaster and everything's grand from then on. If you're not so lucky, it takes ages to sort out what you should and shouldn't be taking, and in the meantime you muddle along with weird moods and moments of panic as best you can.

I mean, I could be wrong here, but I think the whole medication parade is trial and error. In my case, it's a trial. I came into this mess on 150 mg of Zoloft, ostensibly for depression. Unfortunately, it was at least partially causing my fits of hyperfertility, ie, mania. So they started reducing that. Immediately I crashed out of my mania and started getting depressed, so they threw Abilify into the pharmaceutical cocktail and slowly increased the dose. I was in a real funk for about a month, until the dose of Abilify started to make a difference. But I began having an Issue with anxiety, as in, having great big whooping panic attacks, usually at work, usually accompanied by a stomach ache. So now I'm on a medication for anxiety. Which is definitely working but I've somehow ended up kind of blah, uninterested in most everything beyond an initial (and generally forced) five or six minutes of enthusiasm. We'll be addressing that on Tuesday.

What's my biggest complaint? The medication for anxiety. And which one do I probably need most of all? The medication for anxiety. Here there be dragons.

Mind you, I have no problem taking the Zoloft. Taken it for years, and okay, it's a lower dose, but it does its job and I can sleep at night (yay!) Abilify, fine, no issue there, even if it's classed as an "atypical antipsychotic". And all this time I thought I was rather a typical psychotic. I'm okay with the cold meds I've taken for like years, literally. No problem with the iron supplements either. But this anti-anxiety medication. I'm really having an Issue with having to take the stuff.

I have always, always, always had Issues with anxiety. My mom remembers when I was a small kid I would have panic attacks about whether or not we'd run out of gas before we got where we were going. (Ah, but she thought I meant the car. I actually meant the whole planet. I was just ahead of my environmentalist time, is all.) And witness my adventures with query letters. I can very easily work myself up into any kind of imminent end of the world type fears about practically anything with very little provocation. But I'm still very annoyed that I have to take an anti-anxiety medication. Somebody look up "irrational reactions to needing to take medication" and see if my picture's there anyplace.

Yes, I'm taking my meds. Why everyone feels it necessary to ask me that, I dunno, but in case anybody was wondering, the answer is yes. Even the anti-anxiety one. Which I hate having to take.

So anyway, that's how it's going. Maybe things will iron out after the holidays.

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