Saturday, November 17, 2007

Glad to be out

His little experiment didn't work. Rather than switch me off the MAOI, he wanted to try a very controversial depression treatment that involves manipulating the opiate system of the brain with an off-label use of the drugs Naltrexone and Suboxone. It's so controversial that he has only tried it with two other patients in his entire career as a psychiatrist and had to get approval from the head of the hospital before he could do it.

I guess one med was meant to switch off the opiate system and the other would be used to turn a portion of it back on. That was at least my understanding of his explanation. With the condition I was in, I would have had a hard time comprehending a Dr. Suess book, let alone all this talk of brain functions.

The Naltrexone made me feel a little strange, but nothing I couldn't tolerate. It was the Suboxone that did me in. Within half an hour of taking it I was done. My breathing had slowed to a near stop. Everything felt and look farther away than I knew it actually was. My body felt like it was made of lead. I could barely move or keep my eyes open, but yet my mind was fully awake and active. I told him if I were a drug addict, I might have actually enjoyed the sensation. It was similar to what I'd felt when they had given me Versed in the ER last year after having a painful gallbladder attack, just magnified five times over.

So I'm back on Lithium again. He added that to the MAOI, which he decreased a little. I was reluctant to agree to Lithium because I know I had taken it about two years ago. Couldn't remember the exact details, but I know it made me feel sick and for some strange reason made my jaw ache, symptoms that went away as soon as I stopped taking it. But since I couldn't remember the dose I had been on at the time and he said he'd put me on a lower one than what patients usually start at, I figured why not go for it.

I was surprised when he came in today and said I could go home because as far as I knew, I didn't have an aftercare plan set up. Apparently my case worker took it upon herself to devise the entire plan without even consulting me about what I wanted to do. She even set up a pdoc appointment without bothering to find out if I was available on the date and time she arranged it for.

In order to be released, I had to agree to have a "termination" appointment with my ex-therapist. Someone from the mental health clinic is supposed to call me on Monday to arrange that session. Since I got left out of my own discharge plans, I'm going to find out why exactly they want me to meet with her. What could possibly be gained from it? She made it clear she couldn't help me and I made it clear I didn't want to see her anymore. Unfortunately, I was told they will not assign me to a new therapist unless I do this, so I'm in "whatever" mode. I'll follow their rules, even if I don't like or understand them, but I'm most definitely going to ask questions first.

Not sure I was really ready to leave today, but I'm glad to be out of there. I was in far worse shape than I even realized and I'm glad I went. The first three days I was inconsolable, shifting between crying, raging and soul-sucking depression. Spent so much time in my room that when I finally started mingling with the other patients on Monday, they all thought I had just arrived.

I know I'm still in a rather fragile state, and I'm taking precautions to prevent a relapse. I'm really focusing on taking things moment by moment. Normally I jump right into getting everything done that stacked up while I was gone, but I'm holding back this time. I haven't sorted through my snail mail, haven't read emails, haven't sorted through all the various hospital papers I was given, etc.

Spent a lot of time with the kiddie, until she left earlier to go to the movies with her boyfriend. She had a really bad day yesterday and even though we talked on the phone for over an hour last night and I was able to emotionally support her and calm her down, I know she needed the physical contact. So we did a lot of hugging and even more talking today to make up for me not being here yesterday.

We're blowing off my nephew's birthday party tomorrow. There's going to be 35-40 people there and I'm not ready to be around all of them just yet. Instead the kiddie and I will go out for lunch, maybe do some shopping, since her father isn't going to be coming to get her. She needs a new cellphone since some motherfucker at school stole hers yesterday (part of why she had such a bad day).

She's off school all week, something that'll be good for both of us. We get to spend more time together than we usually do during the week and we both get a reprieve from keeping up with her busy schedule which can be overwhelming at times.

4 Comments:

Blogger Polar Bear said...

Dear Sid,
I'm so glad you are out and OK. I think it's great that you recognise the fact that you need to take things step by step, one moment at a time.

Hugs
Polar

2:28 PM, November 18, 2007  
Blogger sansanity said...

ok that post made me grin a big ole goofy grin that made me spill soda down my chin. (and that's how happy is supposed to feel). i'm so glad you are in a better place (notice i said in a better place and not better.)

sans

8:36 PM, November 18, 2007  
Blogger Anonymous Mom said...

enjoy a little down time with the kiddie, sid.

2:54 PM, November 19, 2007  
Blogger anna said...

I'm so glad you are better Sid!!!! Yay!!!

The way you said the Suboxone made you feel? I used to chase that feeling everyday! :) Never quite did though.

It's a very interesting cocktail he gave you! I had Suboxone in rehab to detox off opiates and it worked wonders for withdrawal.

So glad you are back home with the kiddo. Hugs!

10:44 AM, November 20, 2007  

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