12 January, 2013

Random status update

Because I want to share today with people, even though it's nothing special:

Today is fucking weird.

I realized I didn't have homework which is awesome. However, TGW has to work all the work and do all the school. I went from having 12 hours of work a day to absolutely nothing today. (This will change next week, I'm told.)

I was sick for enough days that I couldn't keep my medicine down (it makes me nauseated in the first place, so when my stomach is upset it's pointless to take it - never in my body long enough), and then forgot it for two days, so I've been almost 5 days without medicine, and then took it this morning. The result is a weird buzz-like feeling with some lightheadedness, nausea, and weird hyper feeling. I also had like no sleep last night, which didn't help.

I have an emotional hangover from playing DramaSystem last night - I got super anxious beforehand and stressed out through over half of it, but overall it was a positive experience.

I talked to TGW last night about how I had a really uncomfortable realization that I'm doing something I have always hoped would never happen: I'm being late for things because of my anxiety. When I have to be somewhere, no matter where it is, I get hyper-hyper-anxious and will take way longer than necessary, meaning that I'm always at least ten minutes late, which makes me MORE anxious. This makes me feel like a massive asshole, irresponsible, and also very exhausted. It's something I've witnessed in my family with other people who have anxiety, and it's super frustrating. I don't want to do this. I don't want to be the kind of person who lets my anxiety get in the way of my life, especially not the kind of person who lets it make me a bad friend or bad gaming buddy.

I realized it is a big problem because it's keeping me from seeing people who I'm friends with, it's stopping me from visiting friends, keeping me from doing things I want to like going to the store, going out for drinks or to play games with people, and even keeping me from doing important things at work. It is keeping me from writing, keeping me from having sex, and I don't think it's acceptable.

I can see the little damages it's doing to me professionally and personally. Other people might not, but I notice - and I hate it.

I'll be making a call sometime this week to schedule an appointment with a therapist, which I hate the entire idea of doing right now (because I am anxious about going to the therapist, woo), and I think it's actually bad enough that I need to consider anti-anxiety medicine. That's terrifying to me.

Here's my question. If you've ever made the decision to go on medicine (for anything, physical or mental or emotional) or to go into therapy, what helped motivate you to do it?


  1. I think I like the idea of therapy better than medicine. I think medicines masks a problem. Even if it is for a sore knee, medicine masks the problem and you might trick yourself into thinking you are better. I'd rather have the physical therapy there. I don't have any real decisions just injury type stuff.

    1. See, it doesn't quite work that way with mental health - at least not chemical imbalance. My bipolar disorder is primarily chemical imbalance. Like, there are certain things that trigger the depression, but for the most part, it's completely based on the chemical and electrical impulses in my brain. So medication may seem like it's masking, but it's not - it's actually adjusting the chemicals and impulses in my brain. It's literally a temporary fix (there is no cure for bipolar - you cannot "get over" it, except with some cases of electro-shock therapy which is SERIOUSLY dangerous), which is why some people stay on it for life.

      Anxiety disorders often have a emotional component and are based on long-term-influence on your brain, so your initial responses are emotional, but when it continues for long periods it changes your brain's chemistry. Typically a combination of medication and therapy is best - therapy to change behaviors so eventually you might reverse the chemical imbalance (not always possible) and medication to help reduce the stress in the interim.

      Not all medicine masks a problem. Especially not with mental health, since so much of mental health is based on your brain changing, and so much of medicine is based on helping to reverse or simply ease that damage. It's much different than a physical injury. Although, physical injuries can be fixed by medicine, too - a lot of medicine just eases the healing, or for chronic problems makes it easier to live with. I take pain medicine for my fibromyalgia because it's unable to be healed - if I didn't sometimes take pain medicine, not only would it damage my immune system and cause problems with my mental health, but it can lead to physical complications, too. When I am in a lot of pain, I tense up, and the tense muscles can get damaged (micro-tears in my muscles) or strained. My calves are both damaged from long-term muscle strain and muscle tears that were the result of cramping + physical activity. The pain medicine and muscle relaxers that I have taken make me less tense, reducing the risk of more tears. But, they are meant for helping, not a cure. Physical therapy can help, but it's not much different in efficacy than the medicines (and I've had lousy luck with physical therapy).

      It's pretty complicated. The best thing is therapy to change behaviors and ensure that any emotional problems are rooted out with medication to help ease the transition and help recover damage to brain chemistry.

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