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

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Splitting Hairs, Or Tablets, Or Whatever

This is interesting.  My boss's boss's son, who is all of seven years old going on thirty-five, wrote his own antivirus software today.  You know, a product to rival McAfee or Norton or something.  He said he did it because the pop-up windows in the antivirus software he already has frighten him.  (Yeah, you're working away and minding your own business and suddenly there's  a window open on your screen announcing with garish colors and a loud noise that, by God, your antivirus software is On The Job: That irritating little infostealer.jumcar has been rendered harmless and you, the nice person who shells out the $49.95 a year, can go on about your happy life.) So he wrote his own, with no pop-up windows.  It just works away in the background, completely invisible unless you actually want to see what it's doing.

Did I mention he's seven?  When I was seven I was still trying to master the fine art of laundry. I'd more or less figured out the washing machine, but darned if I could figure out how the clothes got out of the washtub and into the dryer.  Fairies, maybe.  Or elves.  I was pretty big on elves.  Goes with the Icelandic heritage.

Speaking of reliance upon imaginary beings, I may have mentioned at some point that I'm sort of an experimental proving ground for what seems, to me, like a rather large number of pharmaceuticals.  Not all of them have side effects--well, I could say that I'm not experiencing all of the side effects--but one of them does and it's the one that bugs me the most.  In a nutshell, it messes with my brain, or to use the lexicon, it slows down the cognition.  Which means what?  Well, that my short term memory sucks, basically.  At work I'll flick from one monitor to the other (dual monitors at work -- very cool) and in the nanosecond between Monitor A and Monitor B I'll have forgotten what I'm looking for.  Which means I have to go back to Monitor A and look at it until I remember what I was looking for on Monitor B, which looks like I'm sitting there staring at a monitor doing nothing.  (Sometimes I move the mouse around to throw people off.)  Occasionally I have to go back in time, step by step, to figure out what I was thinking about and why I need the information that's now pulled up on Monitor B.  Like so:  "Okay, I glanced down at the Post-It note on the monitor which reminded me I needed to compose a Rule 11 agreement in the Burns matter which means I haven't filed the amended petition yet because I have to do that at the same time and I need to get to that today and before that I was thinking that I really need to refill my water bottle which probably came up because the defendant in the case about the German shepherd was reaching for a water bottle when she lost control of her car and--yes!  I was looking for the photos of the interior of the car that show the water bottle smashed against the dashboard and the odometer stuck at 45 mph!" And I go back to Monitor B, before I lose momentum.

And that happens basically ninety times an hour, every hour I'm awake.  You can see how it might get slightly irritating.

The other problem is simple words.  It doesn't happen when I'm typing, usually, but when I'm speaking I might tell you that the defendant just filed a motion for summary juniper, I mean judgment, summary judgment, yeah, one of those.  Or I might say, the defendant just filed a motion for--and then stop as the words I need go flying past their exit ramp on the freeway, and stand there like a fool while whoever I'm talking to, which is practically always my boss or my boss's boss, looks at me like I've just grown nine heads.

So I've put up with it for a couple of years now, and it hasn't gotten any better, and it may in fact be getting slightly worse.  Today I took the bold step of actually asking the prescribing physician what would happen if I were to taper off of the stuff.  He said I'd see an immediate improvement in That Sort Of Thing, because it's dose-dependent and if you go down, even a little, there will be a reaction.  However (there's always a however), I'd also see an immediate increase in moodiness and emotional volatility.  So it becomes a balancing act.  My mission:  Find a dose that doesn't irritate to extremes with the missing words and the distracting thought patterns, yet doesn't have me flying up to the high highs and crashing down to the low lows, since I've already done that parade and I didn't care for it at all.  Though, the high highs were fun.  And being able to stay up and write until three in the morning and still go to work the next day was awesome beyond awesome.  But it bothers my wife.  Believe me, you can tug on Superman's cape and you can spit into the wind, but do not ever bother your wife.  If they don't teach that in premarital counseling, well, by God, they should.

So I'm starting out by splitting one of the doses in half and taking a dose and a half every day, instead of two doses.  If this doesn't send me spiraling down into the cellar, I might go down to a single dose a day in a couple of weeks and see how that goes.  And unfortunately, that might be the end of it.  I don't think I'm going to get completely off the stuff, which was what I was hoping.  Because if I got off of that one, then I could get off the one that I'm taking to stop my hands from shaking, because that first one makes my hands shake, and if I got off both of those, it's remotely possible that I could maybe not take the little blue ones, or take them less often, and then I'd be taking half as much medication as I am now and that would be pretty cool.  Less to keep track of, for one thing.

This disease sucks rocks sometimes.  In case you were wondering.

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