Time to heal

Recently, I have done some good and bad things and some strange things and also sent a bunch of e-mails that got no response and also made phone calls that got no response and I laughed and cried and lay in bed a lot and all that’s okay, cuz I hereby give myself permission to be a strange and quirky person.

Yeah, like I didn’t already know that and haven’t known that for years.  Even my parents knew I was a rather odd kid.  They even told me they were proud of me cuz I wasn’t the same as all the other kids at school.  Imagine that.

No, I wasn’t special needs.  Back then, they didn’t even call it that, they called it retarded.  (There was no such thing as learning disabilities, which I didn’t have, anyway.)   In fact, I was exceptionally bright.  That kinda bugged me cuz my intelligence did not make me any friends.   I learned to act dumb so that other kids would like me more.

The teachers poked fun at me an awful lot.  For everything under the sun.  Cuz I didn’t fit in.  They even teased me cuz I wore glasses.  Back then, it’s true that teachers made fun of loser kids.

Should anything be any different now?  Should I expect the world to be any different?  No.  And I should be damn proud of the quirky person I am.

Let me repeat that: I should be damn proud of the quirky person I am.

So here are a few things I did, not in any particular order, but in the order I feel like mentioning them.  And I’m tired so I’m gonna be selective about what I talk about so I won’t go on and on forever.

I went off my antipsychotic medication, Abilify.  I went off cold turkey and I think the last day of it was something like the 16th of February.  Why cold turkey?  It takes 150 hours to get out of your system, that is, it has a 75 hour half life.  So I had been up to 10 mgs Abilify.  I knew that after 75 hours, it would be like I was taking 5 mgs Abilify a day.  Then after 150 hours after the last dose, the drug would be completely out of my system.  Now is this logical and scientific?  Probably not, but on 10 mgs Abilify I was getting absolutely no sleep whatsoever, so how could I possibly think logically and scientifically if I wasn’t sleeping?  I wasn’t going to ask Dr. P cuz Dr. P would say no, don’t go off the drug, and I wanted off.  Also, after meeting with me the first time, the abusive therapist said I didn’t need Abilify and encouraged me to go off it.  He said it was a bad drug.  But I discount everything that therapist said cuz as we all know, he was bogus and cannot be trusted.

After a few days, I began to notice effects.  There were a few hours one morning when it was a little difficult to put a sentence together, but other than that, I got through withdrawal okay.  I do appear psychotic sometimes, but it’s due to my severe nutritional status, and has nothing to do with “lack of medicine.”  Is there such thing as Abilify deficiency?  I have anorexia nervosa which means severe malnutrition, and have had it for a long, long time, but Dr. P seems to forget that fact.  It doesn’t take just a few days of eating right to correct this.  It takes literally years, especially considering I’m not a kid anymore.

I’ve found there are advantages to not taking Abilify.  For one thing, sleep.  I went from no sleep at all to some sleep.  I never sleep like a normal person, but I can now sleep for a couple of hours at a time, which is an immense improvement. If I’m very, very lucky, I sleep three hours, but that’s rather rare.

And another thing that happened when I stopped the Abilify was that after a few weeks, I stopped getting edema all the time.  That awful curse that plagued me since mid-2011 was over.  There were no other changes that I can think of (or anything I feel like mentioning) so I think it was stopping the Abilify that finally ended that nightmare.  If you are dropping in out of cyberspace and wondering what the heck edema is, it means (in layman’s terms)….well, let me put it this way: it meant to me that out of the blue, for absolutely no reason, my whole body, in particular my ankles and feet and calves, blew up like balloons.  I am short so for me, this meant waking up about six to ten pounds heavier than I was the previous day for absolutely no reason.  For a tall person with an eating disorder, this might mean waking up in the morning up to 25 pounds heavier.  Now picture this on a skinny person with an anorexic mind, and you’ve got a living nightmare.  I would wake up to my anorexic living nightmare and go on a rampage every time I got edema.  Raising my feet did nothing, those stupid socks for elderly people made me look elderly and did nothing, and laying down?  Guess what that did.  The water shifted, and I got a “fat face.”

Not that I’d encourage anyone to go off their antipsychotic to end edema, but I’m just sharing my experience.  I’m not saying the two are connected, but I’ll bet they are.   I’m damn happy I don’t get edema anymore.

Dr. P insisted on giving me sleeping pills and benzos to make me sleep.  Now I have a big collection of these benzos and sleeping pills cuz at first, I filled the scripts but didn’t take them.  They are enough to knock out a horse, the pharmacist tells me.  So I do wish I was a horse, cuz maybe I’d get properly knocked out.  I have no desire to be “calm,” I only want to be completely unconscious.  While awake, I wish to be as undrugged as possible. I took them a few times.  I slept no more than the usual amount of time, and no more deeply.  So basically they made no difference.

I don’t need anxiety pills or something to “calm my nerves” which is why the few times I’ve tried, I couldn’t turn myself into an alcoholic.  I guess I don’t have it in my constitution.  I don’t get all nervous and reach for a pill or the bottle.  I’m not scared to tell part of my life story to a complete stranger and make them laugh and smile on the bus and I’m not afraid to get up in front of a huge group of people and speak.  In fact, that’s something I love to do.  I’m just not one of those anxious people that has panic attacks or the sweats or the shakes or anything like that.  I can relate to people who have had hard lives, cuz I’ve had one too, but calming myself with chemicals and getting addicted doesn’t seem the route to go.

Okay, what else have I done………

You guys know, or maybe you don’t know, that I dislike asking folks for favors.  Why? When I do, the answer is “NO.”  So I don’t ask.  The reason people say no is because I’m not Miss Popularity, first of all, and I’m not sweet and kind like I used to be, and everyone’s a little bit afraid of me these days.  Well, that’s fine.  Be scared, and I’ll be scary.  But no, what I’m saying is, everyone’s got their family, and family comes way, way before me.

So even making a phone call, I pretty much expect that the person, if they know it’s me, they aren’t going to pick up, or they won’t bother returning the call.  Except for my minister, but he goes into “minister mode,” as he puts it jokingly.  And yes, the suicide hotline picks up when I call.  I’m glad of that.  I’ve even had people tell me not to call them, but “e-mail only” because they are “too busy.”  Let met tell you, that line gets old very fast.

But I accept that people are gonna be this way.  I accept that I am way, way too quirky and weird for people and that’s fine.  I am proud of who I am.  I think I was born this way.  I think my dad would be proud, too.

So I asked a huge favor and so far, I’ve had no response and I don’t expect one.  I have a doctor appointment next Tuesday and I asked at a few folks at church if someone could come with me to the appointment.  No, I don’t need a ride.  I do our public transit just fine.  I need someone to be with me at the appointment.  See, I was alone with that abusive therapist and no one else was there.  This is a male doctor I’m seeing and it’s not so much that, but what if he doesn’t “get it”?  Most doctors don’t understand eating disorders.  Some barely know what eating disorders are.  What if he only asks about my periods and nothing else?  I am going to this new doctor mainly so I can get a referral to a therapist.  Maybe even a referral to a nutritionist and since it’ll be at a big hospital, it might be covered on insurance if they make some exception for me down the line but of course the nutritionist might not know about eating disorders, many only know about diabetes.  So I asked for this favor but I guess it’s way too much to ask.  So I’m hereby giving up on this plea and have accepted that I’m gonna be going to this appointment by myself.

Well, no, I’ll have Puzzle with me.  Did I tell you Puzzle can count?  I’ll have her count how many questions this doctor asks about my periods.  After three, she’ll bite him.

Now, furthermore, all you folks out there with eating disorders, what’s the worst most nightmarish thing you’ve ever heard come out of a doctor’s mouth?  I’ve heard some pretty bad stuff.  Now I’ve got Puzzle trained on cue.  I’m just imagining this:

“So, you’re anorexic and you binge occasionally, too?  I think if you shove in three extra large pizzas all at once, it’s a good thing, and you should do it more often, cuz you could stand to gain a few pounds.”

Now as soon as Puzzle hears that line, she’s gonna maul the doctor to bits, and enjoy all the pizza, too.