"If you don't see the real me, you won't see what love has won..." Vota

Friday, November 1, 2013

Cold turkey

I'm not talking turkey, ha!, as in delicatessen or thanksgiving brand fowl. No, I'm talking the kind that leads to lectures from your pharmacist friend and fear of even telling your doctor/ friend. Yeah, I'm talking about quitting certain meds cold turkey.  Ok, so this will probably make some cringe and others worry and even more readers think I am more foolish than they first thought, but that's just all a matter of your perspective of me and my reasoning. I've been on a couple of ssri meds for awhile now (since I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis nearly 3 years ago) for depression and anxiety. These meds took the fear and the distress out of a pretty crumby prognosis. They also saved me from my tears. Yeah I cried a lot before- just go back and read past posts (many were written with healthy tears streaming down my cheeks). But you can't imagine the tears that came when I found out that my immune system was eating my myelin sheaths-- whatever. It could only lead to bad things as I age but what bad things were left totally up to the disease. If the immune system decided to munch on the nerves to my eyes I could go blind (I actually lost central vision in one eye last winter, but it is better now). If it decides to make a meal of certain nerves that affect my legs I could be bound to a walker or worse a wheelchair. So you can see what fed my depression and anxiety. Every funny feeling in any area of my body and my thoughts snowballed to "could this be it?" Well, as I got used to the meds my tears and fears lessened. I found that I was not even having to mask my healthy tears. I could wear mascara again. And woo boy did I. I loved the feeling of not being ashamed of my frequent tears. Slowly, I forgot that tears could be healthy and I forgot what God had told me about my tears one day. I forgot that tears were my gift of praise and love to God. That my tears were a result of my love for him and his people.

Now skip ahead a few years to this stoic, seemingly angry and seemingly (or maybe even truly) resentful shell of this once God loving, God fearing woman. This woman who once cried for a squished turtle or with a friend whose heart was breaking now only cried tears in anger or frustration. The tears of compassion and empathy were long buried. BUT along with those tears went most sincere smiles, the ridiculous uncontrollable laughter over my jokes that only I found the humor in to start.

Skip ahead again to 10 days ago. I forgot my pills. After a couple of days of forgetting them I realized that I wasn't as tired as I normally was. I decided to experiment for a week. I went off all meds just to see what happened. -- Now on a side note, don't do this!!! I would be the worst person ever to follow in medical decisions. After 7 days I ran into a friend in the store. She told me about some really bad things going on in her life. I found MYSELF (the real me) crying with her. My leaky eyes reminded me of that woman who once would cry with her friends or acquaintances or even the wooly worm she nearly ran over on the highway.

This is when I decided my cold turkey was better than I thought. But how long would the face buzzing last? I contacted my friend who is a pharmacist. Of course he didn't have to lecture me- I already knew what I did was not the best choice. He told me though that by this time the electric lips would soon diminish. Now at day 10, I am glad I did it this way. (Again don't, please don't use me as an example for what to do). I make bad choices often and thankfully God uses them to teach me a lesson. This was a bad choice in my going about it, but only by doing it this way was I able to see what God wanted me to see. Even if my vision is blurred through tears, I could clearly see what he was teaching me. That I need him not drugs to keep me safe. He is my rock, not Zoloft. He is my comfort, not Wellbutrin. Even if I really did need them (many people do and so don't stop yours without consulting your doctor) I needed this lesson even more. I want to repeat that for emphasis. I needed to learn a lesson even more than I needed the medicine. My heart has been securely locked away for safe keeping and has shut people out for too long. The medicine made me not need these people and in the end forget my need for God. He reminded me tonight that even though I desperately want to be able to sing (so badly I posted on Facebook recently asking if anyone ever wanted something so badly it hurt. I got several noble responses so I didn't reveal my desire to be able to sing without making dogs howl) he has given me healthy tear ducts and a huge heart to share with people instead. My voice will simply have to please him alone (well maybe my girls and preschoolers too cause they don't know the difference). I found my heart and dusted it off this week. I hope all of the people I have placed in a safe place outside my bubble will forgive me for keeping them at arms reach... or for some farther than that.

I have referenced to times in my past that I previously wrote about so feel free to browse back through my past posts if you are stumped over something I said. I hope to be writing on a regular basis again.

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