I quit the horrible drugs that made me even more unfocused than normal, fat, lethargic, painfully hungry, and emotionally and cognitively numb - and we're speaking pretty common medecines, Remeron and Neurontin. It freaks me out to imagine having to be truly dependent on these for one's quality of life. In my case, I was feeling pretty down but I am not clinically depressed, and partly I was given these also to help me sleep since I suffer from insomnia. This didn't work very well since I didn't feel that sleepy in the evening/night but slept away the whole day instead! Since I quit, I've been dieting to lose all the weight I gained and have been feeling very energetic. It's a sad misconception that benzos that are given for insomnia are always a bad alternative. In my case they allow me to actually function in the daytime. I also have had no problem tapering off or switching to other stuff when the tolerance level has gone too high. The latter is in fact the only drawback so far. Oh well, life is indeed complicated when it comes to such issues! I'm mentioning all this because many get so darn patronized by the so-called medical expertise, and it can be very tricky to deal with their opinions and prescriptions. I knew a woman once who said that her doctor would never even prescripe sleeping aid. Gee! I would be dead now if I hadn't had them, since my condition prevents me from falling asleep with ease and to have really restful, deep sleep. Some medicines are such low status stuff because the medical issue isn't considered serious enough - for instance insomnia. Many doctors scorn at it and state that it's idiopatic - self inflicted, even though a person who cannot sleep could die from it. Instead, there are high status conditions such as cancer where no one would question the use of very toxic medicines. It's also a fact that most people don't become addicted to anything - at least 70 % get out of some "phase" of addiction all by themselves when they are done with it. Anyway, it's all screwed up as I'm sure many are aware!
I'm really a high energy person and I am at my happiest when I can be that way and really enjoy doing the creative things that I'm good at during normal circumstances. It could be that I am just having an energetic and more hopeful phase right now - who hasn't heard of artists being a little bipolar in some nonclinical way? The trouble is that I tend to get too wound up and simply cannot turn off my nervous system. This over-activity of my nervous system is part of my condition and to date I have not seen a drug that would address this particular issue. I may not have fibromyalgia in the classical sense, yet the symptoms are similar. Those who know about this condition thus know what it's like to have such poor quality sleep and get very soar and achy from work by the computer. OF COURSE mediation is a great remedy, however when the world turns too fast it can be impossible to sit down. It's a bit like having ADHD, in fact.
So, some positive stress that lasts a little while is good for us and as an artist I have to say that I have a hard time creating anything unless I have this kind of stress going. But what to do when I cannot turn it off? This happened to me recently as I started to work on a new website. Although I'm using a cheap template, the stuff I wanted to fill it with took me a good three days of intense work during which I was sleeping more and more poorly. Check it out though, I think it's not bad! http://www.vivimaricarpelan.com/.
Things are starting to flow with more ease despite a few setbacks regarding people I've relied on who are lavish with promises they don't keep. Maybe it was just as well that I was resting for a while thanks to the weird drugs. Now I really have to be creative since I got a commission to custom make a piece of art for national radio's website, and found out a lot of things about my actual social rights to gain a small amount of money. The radio documentary I am in has helped me find out the truth about a lot of social injustice and that the crap that I've had to endure was indeed unfair. This is such a relief since I now feel that I can do something small to improve my life situation and it will be legal with a little help from the social ombudsman. The stuff I've endured is indeed crazy, but it will be in my book. One would think that this is hillbilly country. I never expected it to be.
There's also the promise of the collaboration with a company in London... I hope it works out as it sounds very exciting. I will also have a photo exhibition in a photo gallery in January, it's demanding but not too bad since the gallery takes care of a whole lot of issues and it's all for free! So let's hope that the good vibes continue, for me and for other people as well. I've heard rumours that the collective energies are improving.
Artwork: The Beauty of Expression, handmade collage by author, all rights reserved 2008