My computer died yesterday and my recovery continues

The screen went completely black and upon looking into what the problem might be it turns out to be a $700 dollar fix. Which means I need a new computer.

The especially irritating part of it is that this computer is just three months past it’s one year warranty. It’s basically a brand new computer, but we didn’t get the extended warranty on it. It’s a laptop you might wonder so there is no getting a new monitor, though it is possible to attach the hard drive to a desktop monitor. Something I don’t want to do for two reasons. One we don’t have a desk!! Our house is too small. I sit on a chair with my laptop in my lap—I use the term lap top literally. Secondly, I value the portability too much.

Anyway I had an interesting day yesterday once my computer went dead. I’ve been feeling better every day since my doctor did the latest update on my nutritional regimen. I’m getting into a realm of using natural supplementation I’ve never heard of and that’s pretty amazing since I’ve studied orthomolecular psychiatry for a couple of years now. She is simply cutting edge. We figured out a number of foods I was sensitive too which I cut out to very good effect and I’m on a very extensive mixture of supplements and I’m cutting down on drugs faster than ever before and I’m feeling better and better. Under the care of anyone else I would not be moving so quickly on my taper. Absolutely not. And I don’t recommend anyone without the kind of very unusual expert care I’ve found move any faster than the recommended 10% maximum taper of current dose every three to six weeks.

But I have been very lucky and in my persistent quest to find someone who knows what they are doing with psychiatric drug withdrawal. That quest having spanned three different states in terms of where I’ve traveled—and really the whole country in terms of how many doctors I’ve researched, and I have finally found someone who actually knows how to heal my body in such a way that the drugs become toxic quickly as she heals my body and they need to be removed immediately at certain times. She knows how to read my body and sure enough if I follow her advice I feel better. Now just to be clear, the tapers are still very very small—but the intervening times are much faster.

So yesterday after having felt better for several days, I drove myself 40 minutes into town for the first time in over a month. Yes, for the first time I felt like I could drive safely. And really I haven’t felt able to drive safely for a good 5 months and really even more than that, though I would often do so having little alternative but to be completely isolated and alone at home. So I have driven in a crunch for years actually. I didn’t feel safe while on high doses of meds either and since I’ve been withdrawing the fatigue has precluded me from feeling well.

I drove to town to look for a computer. I studied my options at Best Buy and almost bought something. Luckily it turns out that I was checking in with my husband via cell phone and we discovered we could get a much better deal online, have the computer I want customized and still get it by next weekend.

Getting it by next weekend is important because I’m going on a trip. My mom is coming to visit me on the 23rd and then on the 26th we are going on a four day road trip together to meet my new doctor. I’m looking quite forward to seeing her. I certainly want my computer on the journey though so that I can use it when we are in hotels. I hope I can keep the blog going during at least some of the trip.

Anyway, that’s just part of yesterday’s story. While I was in Best Buy which even pre-medication and pre-withdrawal I could hardly handle being in—the lights and noise etc, drive me nuts. Always have in those sorts of electronic stores. But now due to the withdrawals and drug damage I’m excruciatingly sensitive to noise and light which I’m sure I’ve mentioned before. I can’t really do movies or even TV most of the time anymore. This store had loud booming sounds coming from the TV section as well as strange sound effects being emitted from the computers. And I hardly have to mention the glaring fluorescent lights. I was trying to have a conversation with the sales person and when there are noise and lights coming from all directions I have a very hard time focusing. I realized I was very brave to take on that task yesterday and stick with it for over and hour!!

The noise is like an assault on my nervous system. I had to go outside several times to take a break. The salesperson probably thought I was a bit nuts. I was clearly asking all the right questions and very engaged in what I was doing, but intermittently I’d say, I’m sorry this is a very difficult environment for me, I’m going to step outside.

In any case by the time I left I was a shaky mess, but I knew what computer I wanted and I knew I could purchase it online when I got home.

The really amazing and empowering part of this story comes next. I called my husband as it was already 6 pm and close to dinner time. By the time I got home it would be close to 7 pm. I asked him would be like to meet me in the town between where I was and our home for dinner. He said sure but he needed to finish working. He had a deadline he had to meet. Could I kill some time in town?

So I went to my cottage which I have vacated in spirit but which still needs emptying and cleaning. Being that I was so ill for the whole time I stayed there it is a disaster area and much needs to be packed and cleaned.

I went and worked my butt off for an hour and a half. I worked up a sweat!! I haven’t been able to do hardly anything for more than 15 minutes on my feet for about 4 months. I had now spent an hour on my feet in the hell hole that Best Buy is and then an additional hour and a half working my ass off cleaning and packing in my cottage. WOW! I was so happy. I was functioning almost like a normal person! Not one who was desperately ill and could hardly sit up let alone stand. (I’ve literally been laying down most of the last couple of months with my computer in my lap—but in the last several days, I’ve been sitting again and I’ve also made it out with my husband a number of times and walked around much more.)

The fact that I am feeling better than I have in three months—no make that five months—I’ve gotten stuck saying I’ve been sick for three months, but it’s been longer–really it’s been a year of severe fatigue–and now even as I taper quickly I’m improving dramatically. Tapering so quickly I have people sending me messages of doom of how I’m going to fail. Again, I don’t recommend this method for anyone else as I have a doctor paying close attention to all sort of body systems and prescribing natural supplements to heal me quickly. And most doctors no matter how well-intended simply don’t have this expertise. I’ve tried close to a dozen doctors since I’ve began my withdrawals. They all felt confident they could help me which really gets my goat as I’m sure the great majority had never seen a case even resembling mine and they never helped me and often made me worse.

I feel graced by god right now. And believe me, things are still not easy. It’s simply greatly relatively better! And I say that with much good humor as I am pleased to feel relatively better but look forward to the day that I am without a doubt recovered.

15 thoughts on “My computer died yesterday and my recovery continues

  1. Gianna–
    I am so happy to hear you are making such good progress! Wonderful you’ve found a doctor who seems to know what she is doing. Keep up the good work! That day when you can say you are recovered doesn’t sound nearly as far off as it did a few months ago!


  2. A friend one day showed up at my door with a enormous old Mac-the one piece job that weighed 50 pounds. It really did bend my table in the middle.It didn’t have the “Enter” key marked and so when the tech support guys kept saying “Hit Enter” I go where?? What are you talking about??? So strange-poor guys. I somehow learned to use that mac and when I was ready for a new one I wrote an obit e-mail for Mr. Mac. It made folks laugh.

    I pay a 16 year old to come fix it when I have problems.He made me get DSL after he realized I just had dial-up. I’m computer challenged.
    Glad you’re feeling better. My drug withdrawal story is on it’s way to ya. Worked hard on it.


  3. thank you so much everyone…
    Pat, since you know so well the potential horror of benzo withdrawal, I take nothing for granted at this point.

    I have yet to begin benzo withdrawal.

    I pray I will be one of those who don’t have intense problems but given that I have had such problems with these last two drugs –the Risperdal and Lamictal I reserve my optimism.

    I will make it through it though.


  4. Gianna,

    I’m so encouraged to read this. I’m so happy for you. I wish your doctor was an option for me, but I’m just so glad and grateful that she was an option for YOU. Oh thank the stars or the universe or God or whatever, you are recovering.



  5. Good to hear you’re doing so well! And congrats on your future Mac! I’ve experienced a few minor compatibility-problems though. But nothing that would want me to replace it with a pc, ever. Tried that once, for a shorter period. The paper clip was driving me crazy. And so were the constant “Are you sure, you want to do this? Are you sure, you want to do that?”-harassments.


  6. gianna- So good to hear you are feeling better, some of lifes “little” things can be stressful. You cam through the computer trip jsut fine. There are several examples of how you are progressing. Good for you! Annie


  7. So glad you hear that you’re feeling better. Isn’t it great? Jazz is right that things can switch back and forth, but I think if you expect that possibility, it’s not so disappointing. But I remember well, feeling so terrible for a year–from an unrelenting depression–and taking a medication that turned everything around for me in a day.

    And then, I vividly remember the years of feeling okay but not myself as I waited for my brain to rewrite itself after I’d stopped taking all the drugs but the one remaining one that helped.

    Those good days–when we do things we haven’t, or when we suddenly feel like “our old selves” but with a new appreciation for life are extraordinary. Even, just doing really small stuff–not as big as what you accomplished yesterday–seems like a miracle.



  8. Stephany!
    I’m not ignoring you…we posted at the same time…
    thanks for the well wishes…

    yeah, there is nothing wrong with the library at all…I simply am spoiled rotten — also right now the library is a bit of a distance.

    anyway, the new computer has been purchased and should be in the mail this week!!

    yay! a new toy!!

    I’m donating my old one to a friend who will attach a monitor to it and give it to someone on disability who cannot afford a computer….

    it’s a damn good computer, so I’m thrilled to be able to do that…


  9. Jim,
    thanks your words of caution are well taken and in fact I’ve already had to deal with a crash. Last night when I got home I completely had a meltdown. I was exhausted. I’ve not been that busy and physically exerted myself to that extent in ages.

    Nonetheless I wrote this piece this morning, after the meltdown…

    I’m well aware of the ups and downs…I think of them as part of life…

    I’m doing fine again today, but the reason I crashed last night was because I was very tired and I have really bad PMS and I’m premenstrual again…

    I’m not sure I’ll ever escape the craziness of my menstrual cycle it was there in place when I was only 15.

    What is nice is that I have physical energy and I can get out of the house again. I do hope I can count on at least that on a regular basis.

    Being in a good mood at all times is not achievable, but I do want to achieve being able to leave the house at will for the next 30 years or so until I am too old to do it or I die.

    I don’t want to live housebound and that has been my reality lately, so yeah I’m happy and I was happy even as I had my meltdown last night if that can be conceived of.

    My nerves were just so raw from all the stimulation and the hormones that I gave out. In time that sensitivity should change for the better as well.


  10. Great news that you are feeling better and have a great support in place! I’ve never owned a lap top and did the bills and email at the library for quite some time until my mom shipped me my comp i have now!

    I hope you keep feeling better and better, ((hugs)))



  11. I’m glad you are feeling better. I just wanted to caution you that your moods may bounce up and down for a while. People can get very depressed when they feel good for a few days, but they get low again for a while. This is to be expected. It seems to be the rule when getting off meds. But just keep plugging along, things will eventually get better. Life for everyone goes up and down. For some of us, we go up and down a bit more. We probably swing to higher highs than the average person on the street. So most people never feel as happy as we sometimes do.

    Also, I bit of a note on the computer. I functioned for about 10 years without an internet hook up at home. I walked, rode my bike, and drove to public libraries. I funtioned quite well and used the public computers to put up two large websites. I just got an interned connection a few months ago.
    Keep up the good work,
    Jim S


  12. thanks for the suggestions Moss…
    I’m going for a serious investment and switching to apple. My first computer was a Mac and I’ve done research and now there really are no compatibility problems anymore and they are more reliable and last longer….

    I’m converting!


  13. OK, so it would cost $700 to replace your screen… when you can replace the whole unit with a used one for $300-500… and still keep your old hard drive’s data. Seriously, even if you have higher expectations of a laptop than I do, it won’t cost much more and probably less to replace the unit rather than the screen. I would call Charlotte Street Computers and see if they can get you a deal on that screen, if you’re tied to the unit you have.



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