When I mentioned that I would start reducing my medication to a friend of mine a few months ago, he said something that stuck with me and that is saving me today. He said, “Well done for being stable, for succeeding, for being past the worst of it. But remember, there’s no shame in going back on the meds if you need to.”
I was fixated on getting off the meds to the point that I had not before even considered what he said. It sounds ridiculous, but often when we are focused and driven to achieve something at all cost, we can miss the simplest of common sense.
Thankfully, I was open enough to listen, and to absorb his opinion that evening. And thankfully he was willing to offer the advice.
I am quite fine, and coping very well without the anti-psychotics; I haven’t looked back once. A few days ago though, I decided to go back up to the original dose of my anti-depressant.
My psychiatrist did say that she trusted my judgement with such an increase if I felt the need was there. So until my next appointment in a couple of weeks, that’s the way I have chosen to go. My secret wish to be off the meds has been dashed. For the time being. But the realistic side of me, the “no shame” side, the part that wants to stay well and balanced, knows this is the best course of action.
Taking my medication for the last two and a half years has been a learning experience; most especially one of softening the ego. I generally don’t take medication unless I really need it and luckily I have been blessed with a rather strong immune system. The need for it over the years has been minimal. But in this case, it’s different. Looking back over the last two years I feel like a wild animal that has been tamed, but is quite happy now at the same time. I suppose the “wild” never truly leaves. At least that’s what I say in the hope of not being boring!
Reaching out to family and friends for support, “attention”, care and love is a coping technique, as is my practices of dance, yoga, and teaching.
I feel no shame in reaching out this evening or the last days, to the closest of my friends around the world and here on the island.
I feel held by a net of love and understanding.
Artwork by Beatrice Poggio
Indra’s Net II