I’ve been reading over my blog today. I don’t do that too often. It’s a strange thing to see what came out of my head at any given time and I often cringe at how I expressed myself or when I see occasional glaring typos. I’m learning more and more to accept my flawed, imperfect writing and even find some appreciation and sometimes even inspiration in it!! I think this comes from reading so many others people’s stories and also, especially, reading peoples warm, accepting and even loving comments in response to it. It all breeds self-acceptance.
As I was reading comments today I noticed how often I don’t respond directly to individuals. I just want you all to know that I value all the comments and often times I don’t respond to even some of the comments that offer me great solace. Know that you do not go unnoticed. I simply am not always up to writing. Writing does not alway come naturally to me.
This blog is a mystery to me. How is it that I’ve written so much in the last 5 months? It’s been years since I could write anything. Every post is a mystery. Every time I am inspired to write a few words a small miracle is occurring. So often I just don’t have anything to say. I need a miracle for that to happen. Granted the miracle is happening with great frequency of late but I can not turn it off an on at will. And that includes when I leave comments on other blogs. There are some wonderful threads of which the content moves me and yet nothing comes. So I go in fits and starts and am happy that anything comes at all.
I’ve had a couple of good weeks now, following the worst period of my withdrawal so far. I’ve recovered from the Lamictal withdrawal.
I got myself prepared to start a Klonopin water titration and then for some reason I don’t clearly remember I decided to cut down the Risperdal instead. I suppose it’s because I had decided I would do the Klonopin because I thought it was probably what was making me feel so debilitated. But I came back. I’m relatively okay now. I, of course, still have great fatigue–I’ve had that since I started my withdrawal, but I’m doing normal things again. I spent a few days with a visiting friend. I’ve hiked, I run errands, and yesterday a family who are friends of ours all came over for a barbecue. We had completely stopped entertaining–it’s been months–because I simply could not be confident that I could be appropriately social. I’m okay in other words and Klonopin doesn’t seem to be the issue after all. The issue seemed to be the Lamictal withdrawal.
So I tapered the Risperdal again about a week ago. I had three bad days. So now I’m going to start a Risperdal water titration so I can avoid the bad days. I simply can’t cut the pills in small enough increments anymore. The reason I’ve returned to Risperdal instead of Klonopin is because I’ve been tapering it for 3 years. It’s a known quantity. I don’t suffer terribly. And I want to get it out of my system because it raises prolactin levels which in turn exacerbates PMS.
I’ll do the Klonopin next. I’m hoping to be off the Risperdal by years end. I have 1 1/8 mg to go–I started at 11 mg. With a slow and steady water titration I think I’ll manage by the end of the year. Then my hope is to do the 3 mg of Klonopin by the end of the 2008. It would be great if it went faster and it might. People have radical variance in how quickly they get off benzos. I’ve heard of people barely having any difficulty at all. I’ve, unfortunately, heard of many more who have a nightmare of a time. It can take a year to get off just 1 mg of Klonopin and I have 3 mg to get off of. My source of information, though, are the benzo boards where I think the most desperate are the people who post the most frequently. Those people who have a easy time simply don’t feel the need to share. In the Ashton manual it says 10 -30% of people have protracted problems. I pray I am not one of those and there is not reason to expect the worst, though I do need to be psychologically prepared for the possibility.
Lastly I will go off the final 200 mg of Lamictal I’m on. I will do that much more slowly than I did these first 200 mg of late. I don’t want to go through that hellish fatigue again. So perhaps if things go as planned I will be off my cocktail by the middle of 2009. Hooray and (at the same time) shit that seems like a fucking long time.
I’ve talked to some people recently who came of meds with almost no problems at all in very brief periods of time. Most of the people who have these easy experiences have not been on meds as long as I have, but one woman came off of 1 mg of Klonopin, which she had taken for ten years in a couple of weeks. It just makes my mind boggle. And it makes me angry. Not at the people who have it easy. I’m happy for them.
I’m angry because it is these people who have a piece of a cake of a time of it that stick in the psychiatrists mind and so they simply think you’re sick and need your drugs if you can’t come off in a week or two. That is a tragedy. Many more people are like me and need to take years–especially if they’ve been on meds for years. And even if only on one drug it often takes months instead of weeks. What a shame doctors don’t know this. So many people are trapped on drugs unnecessarily and completely ignorant as to what it takes to get off of them successfully.