Friday, November 23, 2007

No, I haven't died, I got a (second) life.

I imagine that having died would be more comfortable. But don't take that seriously; I'm in the last stages of a med change and such thoughts are symptomatic of the lack of seritonin and/or dopamine, not a lack of meaning.

I've had a long and productive relationship with Paxil, but I'm afraid the relationship is over. Like many really long relationships, there's a period of withdrawal and readjustment. I'm feeling particularly autistic and multiple, with a good selection of involuntary movements and sensory issues thrown in.

Most critically, my judgment sucks, so for right now, I won't be saying much about much of significance until I'm stable again.

I need to obsess about something, but if I spent much time obsessed about society and politics under these conditions, I'd probably slit my throat. Right now it's almost impossible for me to take a deep breath and walk away, so I'm paying as little attention to current events as possible.

Instead, I've doing Second Life, climbing the learning curve and getting ready for what many think to be the next big thing; the 3-D web.

It's still an open question as to whether Lindon Lab's Second Life or one of a myriad of other such platforms, engines and combinations thereof will become the new http protocol, but it's an ...erm... virtual certainty that one will perhaps in time to materially affect the 2008 election. If not, it will affect the 2010 elections - or if there are no elections in 2010, make it rather difficult to impose an effective dictatorship.

Not that I've been doing anything on Second Life that involves politics.

It's all very fascinating and complex, but there's little that's worth sharing, or that I could share, since when I'm in this state I also tend to let my Id take me where it will, and you probably don't want to follow. For those that do, at some point I' MAY have something coherent enough to post to Erotic Truth.

But I'm holding onto that thought until my thought process is again supported with socially-approved chemical crutches. I'll be trying Welbutrin and with any luck, it will work and I won't have to spend any more time being undermedicated.

Speaking of Paxil, while I'm not a medical professional and not pretending in any way to have more authority than entirely too much personal experience; take this as a bit of practical advice. In the normal course of events, you should never, ever, ever take an antidepressant for more than a year, and certainly never without the ongoing support of a certified clinical psycopharmocologist. [Cue Laugh Track]

NORMAL people - those who have not had their neuro-chemistry permanently altered with a series of untreated clinical depressions - will not likely need to take any antidepressant longer than a few months so the following is intended for those who must manage depression like diabetics manage their insulin levels, adapting to the unpalatable reality that their mental health is largely dependent on direct chemical intervention.

In the realm of practical reality within these here United States, simply be glad that you can get a GP to prescribe antidepressants. Meanwhile, as someone who's had brushes here and there with mental health professionals - let me advise you that you owe you and your loved ones a sincere shot at becoming a gifted amateur specializing in you.

However, as I said, Paxil worked very well for me, for a long time, so well and so long that it's apparent worst downside bit me; it's a persistent med that you do become gradually habituated to. So you can't simply switch medications over a long weekend - the higher your dosage, the longer it takes to taper off, and the more uncomfortable it will be. There's a lot of information out there on the web about Paxil/paroxidine and like all medications, you need to balance the up sides with the down sides. Paxil has plenty of both, and like all such medications, what happens to you is something that really cannot be precisely predicted.

I'm utterly miserable and unfit for human company while unaccountably blessed that there are folks in my life that will tolerate me and and monitor my behavior. If that was not the case - and I cannot possibly underline this enough - it's urgent that you accomplish this in a mental hospital or clinic.

Still, six years of relative sanity and stability is worth a lot, even if it comes with a massive balloon payment at the end of the term, and I have nothing but praise for the wonderful boffins who came up with this magic pill. I just wish the ride could have lasted a little longer.

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