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03 November 2011

Who am I?

My world is shrinking. I'm keeping myself isolated. Lately I look pretty scruffy; I look in the mirror and say to my reflection "Dude, you kinda look like shit." Since there's no argument to that, I turn away from the mirror and move on to something else.

Looking back, I think I lost my way last fall when I started on medication. I certainly don't regret giving up my self imposed ban on meds, but I never took even a moment to think about what would happen when they actually began to work. If I changed a little bit each day because of the effects of the meds, would I notice it? I did feel them kick in a couple of weeks after I started taking them. At the end of winter break, though, I did feel different. Not necessarily in a good or bad way. Just different.

I've been on meds for just about a year now. I'm also taking a higher dose of one of them (venlafaxine), twice what I've been taking, starting this week. I still feel lost, and often miserable, and I wonder sometimes if it's the meds-- maybe they don't work. Maybe they make things worse. Maybe there's something else wrong with me.

Tonight, as I was leaving work, I noticed something. I'm different. I don't know who I am anymore. And that, I believe, is why I'm feeling so lost and detached. A year of meds and therapy has produced a change, but it's been so slow I haven't been able to see it. I've been looking at challenges through the eyes of who I used to be, rather than the eyes of who I am today.

The guy in the mirror that looks like death warmed over, I used to be him.
It's time for me to get to know myself as I am today.




4 comments:

  1. Continued strength and fortitude while wading through the density.

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  2. I have to admit I was on meds for a year, and then went off them again when I went back to college.

    I remember having the same feeling you write about here - I didn't know who I was. At all. I could literally look at myself in the mirror and wonder who the hell was looking back. Detached is a pretty good word.

    Then I went off them, now I can speak to the differences. With the meds, you're always somewhere in the middle ground. I have ONLY been able to deal with the deep-seated issues when I got out of the med-fog. But when I needed to survive more then anything, I went on the meds.

    I have a favorite quote from a comedian, who said his paranoid, schizophrenic, bi-polar refused to go on meds because, "I would never know how low my lows are, but I would never know how high my highs could get."

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  3. I am still there and it has been years since I have been there. I still can't find myself

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  4. I also feel like it was forever ago that I wrote this post-- so much has happened since then. The meds did eventually even out. Things are getting slowly better since I got back into therapy (lots of work on mindfulness and behavioral change).

    I'm still searching for myself, but I'm getting closer. It's all new from here.

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