Japanese Drinking & Photocopiers

So what now in my merry world?

Well Sunday was the meeting of my drinking club, or as someone nicknamed it Alcoholics Proud, and the theme was Japan.
We drank sake and plum brandy and ate sushi, we drank Shochu and Japanese whiskey and cocktails with a Japanese twist. It was a pleasant night of alcohol and gentle chatter. Say what you like about us drunks but we do like chatting about alcohol, the methods of making it, the ways of serving it and the ways of incorporating it into our lives.  Incidentally Japan is definitely on my list of places to visit, though I wish I could go back 200 years or so (and as a man).
Also this week Sleepy left the hospital (on which more later – probably after I have actually had a chance to see him) and I went down to my campus. I needed to sign off my mentoring sessions as per DSA funding regs – incidentally I did get them to pay for paper and internet cost for the last year (woo money c. £200), if only I could get a chair to support my shoulder too.  Also I went to the library – which would have been successful except for arguments with the copy machines, suffice to say there was no photocopying or scanning for byghan today but books returned and books checked out. (I’d tell you what but you probably don’t give a damn).
Incidentally I might consider taking more train journeys as incentives to sit and write on my thesis. Would you believe that because of editing despite all the improvements I have made to No.4 I still only have 10,000 words? Godsdammit! I think the editing is worth it, but I really need to put pen to paper so to speak and get more of my opinions down. I will beat the procrastination monster.l

In other news, I am 5 days clear of Prozac (and a few days short of upping my mirtazapine) and feeling … well great/shit tbh. Sex drive currently nil (body image is totally screwed), sleep pattern still elusive, body hurting like crazy, and totally obsessing about self harm (though physically I have it under control, thanks to fresh scars still hurting) but on the up-side … on the upside I have feelings and they aren’t all misanthropic..
In some ways I haven’t so much noticed that I have stopped fluoxetine as feel grumpy that mirtazapine seems to have stopped working. I’d like to say I’m sure that prozac made some difference but I can’t say it with conviction.. it has always felt like an ineffectual holder. I noticed citalopram, I noticed mirtazapine but fluoxetine I just took.

So here’s to another day gone and sleep beckoning.

 

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More Drugs

I got a kindle so I didn’t have to carry so many books when I travel – is there a sensible equivalent for pills?

So a month had passed since my last adventure to the Dr. and thus yesterday I presented myself to the quack so as not to run out of pills. Bravely, I muttered that perhaps the prozac wasn’t really working for me. I have been taking fluoxetine for a couple of months (3 maybe?) now and have spent at least a month at the 60mg mark. I thought I was flat and blue on the citalopram but quite frankly the flat dull misery is better than the crying. I had forgotten about the crying – well not forgotten that I used to cry a lot, just forgotten that horrific ache in the chest and mind that accompanies it. So um yeah.. not better on fluoxetine, I feel like I might as well not be throwing those green and yellow pills down my throat. I could blame myself of course, I drink, and one shouldn’t with anti-depressants, and I don’t exercise enough which doesn’t help –  the fact remains though these drugs aren’t as good as I need them to be.

Hmm, says the quack, better on the citalopram? Yup, says me, it was even better when I was taking both.. Hmmm, he says.

So I have new pills. Not back to the citalopram but a different one as a combo to the fluoxetine. The plan is to reduce the fluoxetine back down to 20mgs (a couple of weeks at 40 first..) and meanwhile add in Mirtazapine, 15mgs to start with heading up to 30mgs, but remember to take them in the evening. Have you been following closely? Try to watch as I try to take the right ones at the right time..

I have started reducing the fluoxetine today, feel a bit groggy and headachey but I’m not sure whether thats related. I don’t know whether to take the first Mirtazapine tonight or not, part of me thinks its daft to compound the weirdness but part of me thinks getting it over and done with is a better plan. I want to be really optimistic about the new pills – apparently they might make me feel quite stoned and when they work they are fantastic but I’m nervous about the sleepiness and weight-gain potential. Being a fat slug isn’t exactly my idea of cheery, but perhaps the mood improvement will mean more exercise and no comfort eating – plus some people find the doziness goes away after a few days.

Watch this space and I’ll try not to rattle (if I take my new ones today thats a total of 6 pills – and I’m at 5 items on my scrips)

A Shaky Grip

Lost a bit of composure today.
Yesterday I was determined that I would not cry in front of my father – not I think for any good reason so much as I couldn’t manage words to try to talk to him about it if I did. Today I let myself get rattled.
I thought everything was going ok. In fact I thought I was having a pretty good day but a failure to be able to connect physically reduced me to tears

I logically know that I am not at my most sexual when I have my period; I also know that prozac famously has some sexual side effects but thats not the same as the feeling.
A feeling that emphasises how little I can connect with the person beside me – like I feel like I am drifting though I want to pull my lover close. More than that it felt like parts of my body were reacting but my emotions and my pleasure weren’t. It felt like I was going to have a physical orgasm with no emotional connection or even relaxation or enjoyment whatsoever and it scared the crap out of me.

Sex is just sex but being close to someone you love is essential and for that moment in time no matter how true it was or how fleeting it might be I felt completely alone.
And don’t get me wrong i was held and adored and loved like I don’t believe I deserve and reminded that I dont need to do anything particular to be loved and kept – its just a terrible burning feeling inside that I am too rubbish for this much love.
No logical discussion can shake my sense of disappointment and loathing of myself – not even my own acknowledgement of that logic. Sometimes CBT is not strong enough; combating feeling with logic doesn’t work when you can think and feel simultaneously.
This is where mindful acceptance comes in – but no amount of training can help you feel like its ok to demand that someone else looks after you.
need to work on this

Pills Again

So I went to the Dr again.
I was about as honest as mumbly-features here can be. No, I’m not feeling better, maybe a little worse. But I couldn’t say that I’ve hurt myself more in the last 3 weeks than in the previous 3 months. I could say that my sleep was disturbed but not that I’m tired all the time.
I mentioned that I think I am putting on weight but not that I’m not sure whether or not the drugs are making me nauseous.
The Dr said he wasn’t surprised that my mood hadn’t improved because I hadn’t yet reached an equivalent dosage of fluoxetine to the citalopram I was on. So I am fazing it up, now at 40mg and heading for 60mg.
So we will see how it goes. Fingers crossed for some real improvements.

More Fluoxetine, a Surprise Trip and all the rest

So, I’ve been on just the Prozac for a week now and am expecting another week or so to get stabilised. I’m not having much fun. Whilst I was still on the citalopram as well I thought that my mood was improving but at the moment the lack of delight (anhedonia is an under-rated word I feel) is decidedly dark. I feel like taking anti-social to whole new levels of irritation and distaste at those around me and I find myself angry at myself much more. As for whats actually spinning around inside my head – well you don’t want to know, but I have it under control. To paraphrase Terry Pratchett: Miss Byghan’s Body and Mind are firmly in the grip of Miss Byghan.

In spite of/because of this I have struggled through work this weekend; but I also rewarded my beloved wife with a surprise trip. As commented in my previous post she had to go to a conference so I went to visit her and take her out on the town. Other than ambling round half-lost for a chunk of the evening I think it was quite successful. I did something I wouldn’t normally do and explored a new place, she got the reassurance of my proximity and a chance to go out.

I just wish it was enough. Her mood has taken a bit of a dive (I have no idea if it is related to my ups and downs and feel it best if I don’t speculate) and she is being eaten by the Jealousy monster. It doesn’t help that B has been quite needy because he is in pain with a bad ankle but I think it has mostly to do with her self-esteem. She is having one of her ongoing crises of personality and conscience which I feel unspeakably powerless to help with. I hate the feeling of being an added burden to her but have to take comfort in the fact she enjoys my company. All I can do is be here with her and ride through the storm at her side reminding her that I value her and not letting her self-loathing turn entirely to bitter jealousy but accept that it is one of the features. Onwards and Upwards. W – I Love You, I Believe in You.

Feeling a little beaten back by the theoretical elements of my thesis at the moment. There is so much fascinating stuff but I don’t think I am good enough to attempt a synthesis without resorting to truisms. Classics as power structure, local history as self-aggrandisement, Usage dependent on educational strictures etc etc. Not sure if this is a crisis of confidence or represents a lack of sufficient analysis for me to use…

Deep Breath.

Fluoxetine Continued

Am now up to day 4 of my citalopram-fluoxetine combo.

I have to say that so far the side effects have been less pronounced than starting citalopram. I still have a headache and a slight muzzy tiredness. I have even got the dry mouth thing back but the nausea was short lived and the dizziness hasn’t been too bad. I am hoping that these will die down over then next week or two.

I’m not sleeping very well though. I noticed that as part of dropping down the citalopram. In some ways I am glad of the slightly less intense sleepiness, but the fatigue levels haven’t changed, the difference is that I am now back to taking longer to drop off and waking up multiple times per night for more than a few minutes which had definitely improved on the 40mg.

Mood-wise – I’m not more suicidal, which is nice, self-harm issues are up and down – which I’m taking as no change. So first key point is that its not worse, now I just have to give it more time…

 

In other news: I am back to frantically improving my business plan. Its unlikely that the brewery I wanted to help be a major funder as anywhere near the sort of cash I need to raise so the question is – does someone else? Anyone got 100-150k they want to invest in an excellent opportunity?

Fluoxetine. Day 1

Yesterday I treated myself to sleep, today I have taken up Prozac.

It feels as faintly ridiculous as it sounds.- What shall I do with my monday? Hmm take a new different coloured pill and try to make my head stop whirling. Take up a brand new world view and fill my body with chemicals..

I have done very little today except sit on the sofa and stare at the tv box and the ‘puter box. Feel a little odd to be honest, like starting citalopram I feel headachey and woozy – dizzy, a little nauseous and sort of stoned. I cannot concentrate at all. Emotionally its a bit of a see-saw, have been in tears twice and a little giggly.

Tomorrow I imagine will be different.

Meds

Shit.

Am really scared.

I have been on citalopram for just over a year now; both of my loves have also been on citalopram for over a year – I think there are no words to describe how much difference these fucking pills have made to our lives. I will spare you the gory details but inability to work, violence, self-harm and  suicide threats feature heavily. Its fair to say despite all of our initial misgivings the drugs dun good.

So why the terror? – well basically, my Dr. suggested a change. We fear change. The results of my time on citalopram have been less dramatic than those of my lovers. Suicide is not (and never has been) a viable option, and it and self-harm have diminished as constant and unrelenting thoughts. But overall I haven’t done as well as I had hoped, self-harm not quite gone and ups and downs kind of noticeable. The whole thing is weird and difficult to explain but I am no more or less likely than before to descend to those dark places where personal inadequacies loom larger than global tragedy and I am still somewhere on the dark side of coping.

Its not a big deal, or even a surprise, but the next step for me is Prozac.

Did I mention I am fucking terrified?

Its probably unfair – but I live in a world that has ‘prozac’ as a bad guy, where it is difficult/impossible to get off of and commonly leads to serious suicidal issues. It could be the miracle wunderkind but quite frankly I ready for it to fuck shit up big time. OTOH I also know I ain’t right and its not fair to dismiss what I don’t know. So from here in out expect some regular updates as I switch over. If need be I will quit or go back but I need this reference to remind me about “normal” and “appropriate” or hopes thereof.

 

Wish me luck