Tiny Coconut

I have things.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Out With The Old And Ineffective...

For those of you playing the "what brain-altering-but-generally-ineffective pharmaceutical is on TC's shelves now?" home game, my psychiatrist and I decided today that the Effexor is out for good (I'll be titrating down the last little bit over the next week) and we're going to give Celexa a whirl. along with a significantly increased dose of neurontin.

Apparently, Celexa is a very close cousin to Zoloft, except milder (read: generally less effective). I did great on Zoloft, at a relatively low dose relative to my diagnoses, until it began to make my anxiety ratchet up higher than even the thought of Stalker Girl coming at me with an arsenal of weapons had done. So we're hoping that Celexa will give me the depression relief with less, if not completely absent, anxiety. Oh, and fewer of the other side effects, as well. And if it does increase the anxiety a little, there's the neurontin to help me cope iwth it, which I didn't have when I was on Zoloft.

Plus, Zoloft was good, really good, for my, um, marital relations, if ya know what I mean. In that realm, Effexor was Bad. Very, Very, Very, BAD. So very bad that that point alone would have made me want to go off of it; the not-working thing was just the capper.

So now the leftover Effexor will join all those other half-finished bottles of medications in my bathroom. It can hang with the ativan, and the klonopin, and the zoloft, and the lower-dose of xanax. I almost wish I could donate all these drugs to some worthy cause. I mean, damn. There must be plenty of underprivileged, under-insured people out there who are depressed or anxious. In fact, now that I think about it...ARE there any organizations that redistribute unused drugs? Or is that so fraught with liability issues that nobody in the world would possibly touch it?

Anyway...We talked a lot about hos disappointed I am in the way all of this is going; I had a similar discussion yesterday with my therapist. As I said to both of them, I know that there's the whole 'no pain, no gain,' thing, but it sure does feel like I'm worse off today than I was more than two years ago, when the panic attacks started, and that I'm disappointed that I can't yet handle this alone--as in, without major quantities of meds.

Dr. Oui, my psychiatrist, gave me a really good analogy to work with, though. He talked about my going around for years and years with this anxiety building up, and this low-level depression over the way things in my life were going, as if I were someone who'd been wounded in an accident, but kept insisting that there was nothing wrong, no big deal, just a flesh wound, it'll go away. But finally, when it was good and festering, I went to see a doctor to have it opened up and cleaned out. And that, he says, is what I'm doing in therapy, and why I'm finding therapy to be fairly painful and frustrating at times.

His job, as he put it, is to help me get to a place where my therapist and I can clean out the wounds without my being in such excruciating pain that I try to rip off the arm of anyone who comes near me. Hence the durgs, and the need to keep tweaking them until the pain is not gone, but tolerable, so that we all, as a team, can finish the job of stitching me back together.

Yeah, I know. It sounded a lot less hokey in his office, trust me. Must be the voice.

In any case, that's the deal. And so now I wait...for the Celexa to kick in, for the anxiety to lessen, for the insomnia to lessen. For the wound to be clean enough for stitches, and then for the scar to begin to fade. Seems like an impossible dream, a place I'll never get to, but it's good to have an actual goal.

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