Sometimes I think some of the things in life are bullshit. Sometimes it can take me a little while to realize this. In fact, I think I take “longer than the average bear” to come to such realizations. In this case I’m pretty sure my meds had been holding me back.
Since the divorce I had been on Effexor and recently (last summer) added in Welbutrin. The former kept me even tempered, too much so. I could really sit and focus with it, but I also didn’t give a rat’s ass if I got to work on time, cleaned around my house etc. The ‘butrin was my pill person’s (she’s a licensed physicians assistant/counsellor) answer to that.
I’m thinking what played out was the old cliche that “when all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”. That is, all she has are meds to keep me coming in, so instead of some weening, why not add more pills. A pill for every problem followed by a pill for every problem the first pill causes and so on. I was even prescribed Naltrexone to even out the Welbutrin if I was too shaky! WTF?! Why not just back off on the ‘butrin.
The Welbutrin certainly upped my energy, but in the most craptastic way. I felt continually trembly and nervous. Still, I was able to function and must admit to having the most intense orgasms too. Initially, I also dropped about 10 pounds from not having the craving to eat.
However, I finally got sick of just mindlessly popping pills until I had apathy and energy. The weight loss was temporary. I felt the, now more energetic, flat apathetic feeling creep back in. I started to realize that I could no longer even remember what the pills were supposed to be affecting in my life.
I called to look into backing off of my meds. At least cutting doses in half, etc. Unfortunately, my pill person also sucks at responding. Thus, I did the thing they tell you never to do (although, I’m starting to form a right-wingnut conspiracy theory as to why)…I changed my meds on my own.
I started by cutting back the BuPROprion to half the dose. That was easy. My nervousness died back and I felt more comfortable. I then cut the Effexor dose in half. This one was a little more tricky. I know if I miss a dose my brain has weird instances that might be like an instantaneous fix, like the receptors are starting to take signals differently. It’s as though I get tiny instantaneous pangs of either pleasure or deviation from consciousness.
That transition took over a week alternating my usual dose with the half dose until I finally settled into a good spot.
Ultimately, I’m starting to feel a bit more like my old self. One thing I’ve really noticed is I am falling asleep earlier and thus waking up earlier. I’m moving and out the door sometime in the 7:00 hour. Not the earliest of birds, I know, but is an excellent feeling to not have to force it just to be to work before 9…10 and not care.
I’m also feeling more motivated. I’ve made huge progress on my basement remodel and even got my daughter’s room painted on Easter Sunday of all days.
As for the med change, my primary care doc said she’d be happy to help me manage my happy pills. I guess I’ll have to go see her.