Friday, October 15, 2010

There's "nothing" wrong with me... prescriber is trying to get rid of me.

Let me just...okay first, I don't think he's a terrible prescriber (it's about to sound like I think that, so consider the record pre-emptively cleared).

That's pretty frustrating to see your prescriber once every 4-6 weeks...have awkward to bad reactions to most of the meds you try...have your prescriber argue with you about what you need (Ex: he thinks I need a long acting med for ADHD...I prefer shorter spurts because I simply can't be that focused all the time with the way my life operates...he kept prescribing the long acting ones...)...and then...after a billion trials of different meds and combos...have him say things like "I'm not convinced you have an anxiety disorder. I think you would have been fine without any treatment at all. I think we're just chasing a dragon here. You would have been fine if you'd never walked into this office. You cope just fine.".


Way to minimize my difficulty, dude. Way to make it sound like "coping" is a great way to live. You seem like a nice guy and you seem smart. But my appointments are 20 minutes long...every 4-6 weeks. We don't really get into a lot of substance. And luckily for YOU, I'm able to be really articulate about my mental health experiences, for the most part. I also spent 33 years coping my ass off to learn ways to "do" life and get things done and it was stressful to the point that it probably shortened my life span, and certainly affected my health (let us all recall the bizarre migraine incident).

I think he's mistaken my articulation and ability to "pass" for lack of impairment. Aw...that's cute. Wait...not, it's not.

I know I'm not the most impaired person around...but is it "normal" for it to take a person with exceptional reading ability 12 hours to get through an article that should take an hour to read? That trivial little impairment made grad school AWESOME times, like 1000.

I'm feeling shy about some of my other impairments right now so I'm not going there. get the idea. It felt pretty crappy to be told that he thought I was normal...HAHA...which sounds all wrong. I assure you, I'm very interested in improvement, and in mental healthiness. My therapist certainly agrees.

But what the hell was he thinking?! He seems to be thinking that I'm a waste of his time. And so, we are in agreement...I will likely be switching my prescription care over to my GP after my next appt. We are in agreement on this switch, but for totally different reasons.

He acts like I'm a waste of his a polite way...but really, I wonder if he isn't just frustrated with how difficult it has been to find meds that work for me. Incidentally, we finally seem to have hit on a good combo and it happily treats my migraine issue as well. But...I think sometimes that maybe he's taking this all a little personally. I might represent failure to him in a way that he may not even notice in the front of his mind. Maybe that's a strange thing to think...but I've learned over the years that I'm generally more perceptive about people than I think I am.

For me...the switch will be less precarious than it would be for many people getting psych meds from a GP...because I have busted ass to educate myself about what all the meds are and what they do and what their side-effects are. Unfortunately I also learned a lot of it the hard way, through first-hand experience. I've also learned a lot about what DOES NOT work for me and I know what questions to I'll be pretty well equipped to shoot down insane suggestions from my GP if I'm not feeling okay about them. And I can request a referral if I need one...

So...the switch might be good. I like him as a person, in the short spurts we've spent together, but he might not be the best fit for me as a provider.

I shouldn't have had to fight for a year to simply be prescribed 5 mg of Ritalin to use at my discretion depending on my activities. For the record, it seems that for me, 25 mg of nortriptyline a day and 5 mg of Ritalin for days when I'm desk-bound are about all I need. Seems like not a lot, but my med sensitivity means that for me...these tiny doses make a huge difference. (For some reason, now that I take the nortriptyline at a higher dose, the Concerta is just too much, even at 18mg...though in general, in my experience, I think it's a GREAT, and subtle drug.... The nortriptyline itself makes me feel a little calmer and more that the Ritalin booster is just the right amount to put me in a subtly quiet and focused mood. I officially cannot even believe that at one point I was taking 70mg of Vyvanse...what the frigoriffico!? I'll own that though...I just knew something wasn't I thought I needed more...not of us should have figured it out...!)

Change...I have complained a lot about it this year (on and offline) but I feel like this change will be good. What do I say on this occasion..."Thanks for finding me annoying because I'm not a quick-fix patient?" or "Thanks for minimizing my relative difficulties because I'm not actually mentally ill?".

I think I'll just go with "Thanks..." and "...later!".

I've been a little quiet...

...and it's basically because life is REALLY objectively stressful right now. It's easy to lose sight of the many good things when a handful seem to be coming apart at the seams or burning to the ground, but I've been practicing EXTRA HARD.

I make lists of things that make me happy lately, when it all feels like too much (and lately that is a frequent feeling).

I've had three panic attacks in two weeks and I honestly haven't really and truly had one for about 9 years...this says something about how stressful things have been. But...I am soooo much better at managing them that I used to be. The best first step is acknowledging what's going on.

My therapist also gave me a tool that is AMAZING. She says that when I feel anxious I should talk to the anxiety. sounds like typical therapist googoogaga but it works...when I feel my anxiety level rising, I start to talk to the anxiety. I ask it questions. And as I do so, something awesome happens...the anxiety takes on its own starts to evolve as a being separate from myself. This process encapsulates the anxiety into a tangible form that no longer seems threatening and no longer feels attached to me. I don't know if this works this way for everyone, but for me, it's the best new magic tool in my toolbox.

So...I guess I've needed more of my energy for me, and less for blogging...learning to ration my energy when necessary? Well then I guess this is all progress...wrapped in a funny, awkward little package.

I'm a soldier armed for battle...and battle seems less scary (and less like a battle) when you're prepared to face it.