Friday, March 4, 2011

I'm on Crazy Pills

Before I get into this story, let me just put in a serious aside here. I am in no way making fun of anyone, I’m not putting anyone down, I’m not casting judgment on anyone who uses antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication. Miley over at Musings of a Confused Woman wrote an excellent blog post on the subject of mental health, as did Midwestern Mama. Everyone at some time or another struggles and if you or someone you know needs help there is absolutely no shame in getting help. It’s a taboo subject though, and one most people are sensitive about, including myself, which is what led to this exchange.

Some background information: When I was 17 I was in a car accident. It wasn’t a very bad accident but I did bite a chunk out of my cheek and butterflied my tongue on the left side. It hangs over my teeth now and if I ever get hit the jaw again I’m going to bite it off.

Gross, huh?

Anyway, like I said - it wasn’t a bad accident, but it made me realize that I was not in fact indestructible and was capable of wrecking my car and injuring myself. Cue the panic attacks. I would get them every so often if I was driving in an unfamiliar area or driving in really bad weather. Panic attacks are probably a little different for everyone but mine involve going from fine to freaking out in the snap of a finger. It feels like that moment in a scary movie when you know something terrible is about to happen any second and you're absolutely powerless to do anything about it. I feel like my vision is messed up, or like I’m not registering what I’m seeing correctly and am about to be in an accident.

I go from this:

To this:



It’s not fun. Slowly over the course of eight years it got better and then pretty much stopped.

Until I moved to Columbus in 2009. It was probably a variety of stresses and other issues piling up, but I started getting panic attacks more frequently and in places I had never gotten them before; at work, at home, on the bus at school, driving on familiar roads. A helicopter hovering over my house last fall nearly sent me into a meltdown (I'm afraid of hovering helicopters - too many nightmares with them in it). To make a long story short I finally had to do something because I couldn’t handle the attacks and I was suffering from general anxiety almost all day. 

So I made an appointment with my doctor. On February 14th.

I made an appointment to get myself crazy pills on Valentine’s day. Oh the things they must have thought about me picking that day to get on medication.

I don’t know what I was expecting when I went in but I thought I would say, “Hi, I have panic attacks and general anxiety, can I have some drugs to help me cope until I can manage it?” And then the doctor would say, “SHORE!” And write me a script.

That isn’t exactly what happened. I sat in his office answering questions about whether I was depressed, if I thought about suicide, what kind of sexual activity I had, what was stressful in life, so on and so forth - FOR AN HOUR. I should be grateful that he cares so much and wanted to make sure I was okay and was getting the right medication but after an hour of talking about my personal life and my feeeeeeeeelings (not a fan of this unless I'm bitching about something) I was ready to go.


FINALLY he told me he was going to write me a prescription for Prozac. Before he left the room he gave me a hug. I'm all about hugs, I have no problem getting them or giving them, but getting a hug from your doctor after spending an hour talking about your intimate thoughts and problems made me feel like he thought my ship was sinking and sinking fast.

So, prescription in hand I drive over to the pharmacy with the biggest I AM NOT CRAZY smile on my face I can muster. "BE COOL!" I thought to myself as I drove up to the window. "IF YOU ACT COOL HE WILL NOT THINK YOU'RE A PSYCHO." I drop off my prescription and am told to come back in 30 minutes.


At some point while I was wasting 30 minutes I managed to rub my eyes and smear my eyeliner so it appeared as though I had been crying or having some kind of nervous breakdown. I didn't realize this.

I pulled back in and told the guy in the drive-through window my name. He was very blasé. He walked away and came back and said, "I don't have a current copy of your insurance on file. This is going to be three ninety nine."

I start freaking out. There is no way I can afford that without insurance! Kaiser's surgery plus my credit card bill from Christmas had just wiped my bank account clean. I tell him that my mom's card is on file there and that we're on the same insurance. Can he look me up with that? He goes away and comes back a few minutes later.

"I added your insurance, but this is still three ninety nine."


There is no way I can afford this. I tell him so. Actually, I was so thrown by the whole exchange and already rattled about being embarrassed to be getting pills to regulate my mental instability and having this guy be such a dick to me I said, "Well, that's not gonna happen!"

He stares at me for at least a full thirty seconds and then says

OH.


"OH GOD, OKAY!" - nervous laughter - "I thought you meant three hundred and ninety nine dollars."


More nervous laughter. He doesn't say anything. The silence is more than I can bear.

"You probably thought I was super cheap!"


Without saying a word he filled my prescription and sent me on my way with my crazy pills, probably thinking that I was going to need a much stronger dosage than what he had given me.

I had totally gone into that thinking I'd be charming and happy and he would not think I was insane. I obviously failed.

BUT the silver lining is that I think they are working and I also didn't realize how anxious I actually was. I think I've even lost a little bit of weight already because I'm not cramming food in my face in an attempt to self medicate. I'm probably also drunk a little less but I totally plan to remedy that tonight.

Have a good weekend!!


40 comments:

  1. Haha. Yes, I think it's awkward that your doctor gave you a hug...for real.

    And, this reminds me, I blew up at a gas station employee a few weeks ago, because the stupid dang cars weren't moving forward in the line, so I cut in front of 'em. He then came over to me and said, "Uh, you just cut those 2 cars off." To which I yelled at him at how stupid Utah drivers are. I've never done that before--but I bet he thought I was crazy.

    And, to answer your question, yes, that story in my post really did take place. It was a church activity.

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  2. Um... you're awesome. That is all.

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  3. Love your story! The pictures crack me up! In my house we call all of this "better living through chemistry." It's all in how you look at it!

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  4. Shanimal - Yeah it was sweet but still awkward. And that's hilarious, the guy was probably like WTF IS WRONG WITH HER??
    Goofy Girl - So are you my dear.
    Laughingmom - I love it! I'm chemically enhanced!

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  5. Oh that was hilarious. When I was on the crazy pills they were free with our insurance. Pretty convenient.

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  6. Oh, my god. I would have done exactly the same thing. I think I need to be medicated just to go to the doctor because I'm always freaked out that it's going to cost a small fortune.

    Glad you're feeling better!

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  7. Rachel - Well $3.99 isn't bad. I can afford that :-D
    Chi-town - We'll all be in a medicated stupor! Thanks! :-)

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  8. UGH! I had written this very long detailed comment,and then my internet connection conked out!
    Ok, suffice it to say: I loved this post, from your witty writing to your cartoons. I loved how even the sunshine has a "I'm not crazy!" smile, and you've managed to draw the drive-thru pharmacy guy looking like he really doesn't give a shit about how crazy you may or may not be.
    I really like coming here! You are very talented!

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  9. Well, the hug thing was kind of weird, but you got a 'scrip out of it!

    $3.99? That's it? I need to move to your part of the world.

    Hey, pills are there for a reason. This sounds like a good one to me. :-)

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  10. Oilfield - The "We're all gonna fucking die" picture is my favorite. It makes me giggle. But thanks!
    Sandra - Doesn't that make you want to break things? I hate it when that happens. But thanks so much for nice comment!! I'm glad you like it :-)
    On my Soapbox - I guess that's the going rate here but I had no idea they were cheap which is why I was freaking out.

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  11. Oh Man!!! That was funny. The look on the guys face after you told him that he must have thought you were super cheap is CLASSIC!!!

    You're drunk a little less? Hey, alcohol "may intensify the effect!"

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  12. cRAZY pILLS? bEING IN nEDICINE FOR 30 YEARS, AND TAKING IT LONGER THAN THAT--i THOUGHT THATWAS PERFECTLY normal--UNTIL YOU SAID 3.99!!!!

    3.99?????--- yOU'RE CRAZY!!!!

    hUGS---awkward!

    lol

    j

    Whoops-- CLA! Caps Lock Affliction: cannot be cured!

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  13. Pat - OMG I JUST FOUND THAT OUT! I went out Friday night and had four beers and was absolutely loopy. I didn't find out until Saturday that it's like drinking 8 beers!! Hahaha!
    John - I think being crazy IS a state of normal now! :-D

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  14. Don't you just HATE it when that happens? I would have thought the same thing. I mean, have you ever bought a prescription for under $10???

    No, me neither. Cool!

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  15. Nikki - That's the first time it happened so next time I'll be more careful! Lol. My BC is $40/mo so I thought for sure it would be somewhere around that price. Sigh.

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  16. Bwahahaha you are already officially the funniest (un)psychopath at humorbloggers.com! Believe me, you deserve a crown or something for that acheivment. :)

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  17. Offended - Hells ya! Bring on the crown! :-D

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  18. I feel like I shouldn't have laughed at any of that, but I couldn't help it. Hope the happy pills work for you.

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  19. M Pax - It's okay to laugh at me, that's the whole reason I wrote it :-)

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  20. I totally thought it was $399 too. I mean, I can't get a hot dog for less than five bucks. And they're selling you mental stability for that? Awesome!

    (And congrats for real! Anxiety sucks.)

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  21. I'd say that was one crazy post, but you're not crazy. :)

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  22. FreeFlying - RIGHT? There was no possible way that it could have been three DOLLARS and ninety nine cents. My morning coffee costs me almost FIVE!
    Copyboy - Thanks Copyboy! :-)

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  23. I think more people *ahem* than we know have been on the crazy pill. I love your sense of humour about it. One of the myths about mental health issues is that "people going through it suddenly lose their sense of humour." I think it is more about the people around them being afraid of being unPC. If we can't laugh at our own awkward moments, then what's what's left? Thanks for sharing your story and your OMGROTFLMAO drawing! You rock! - G

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  24. Georgina Dollface - I know, I find that it's actually pretty fun to make fun of myself. And thanks!! I'm glad you laughed :-)

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  25. Great post, good luck with your anxiety, writing about it will probbaly help.

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  26. Laughing Vault - What, the tongue? I hope you're talking about my tongue and not me :-D
    Lazarus - Thanks! It'll either help or be the cause of, who knows!

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  27. Yeah, hugs from doctors = awkwardddddd. And I know what you mean about the anxiety--I've just now got to where I can go to school and stuff without totally freaking out. Stay strong, lady!

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  28. Was there a boob-grab with the hug? Cuz that would be totes worth it.

    I hear Prozac makes you a little... crazy. Oddly, my grandma who is 82 and is slipping her clutch takes it every day and she seems just fine. Sort of.

    Nice drawrings!

    Caleb

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  29. greengeekgirl - Yeah, totally. I got one when I went to the follow up appointment too!
    Caleb - There was not. Or do you mean did I grab his boob? Because I totally did. Thanks!

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  30. I feel so awkward getting my medicine at the pharmacy! These pictures are freaking insane-love it

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  31. Chelsey - I know right? I know someone who works in a pharmacy and they TOTALLY judge you on what pills you're getting! Haha

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  32. So freaking hilarious!!!!! I am in love with your blog. :) Keep it up!

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  33. Korey - Why thank you! My blog loves you too :-)

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  34. There's no such thing as crazy- just medicated and unmedicated.....and let's face it, the majority of the unmedicated ones are very unhappy.

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  35. ♥α§ђ£ε¥™♥ - LOL. I USED to be a happy non-medicated one. I was just fine running on my own dopamine. I guess those days are bygone now.

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  36. oh,how did I miss this one......hilarious.love the pics.....the pharmacy guys face ...hahaha. and the we're all gonna die,lol, I can relate....i taught two of my kids to drive while having passenger anxiety of your variety ............

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  37. IWASNTBLOGGEDYESTERDAY - Hahahaha I've thought about that - how am I ever going to teach my kids (assuming I have any) to drive a car? That sounds like the worst torture ever, especially if they're anything like I was when I was learning. I guess I'll just have to up my meds when that time comes :-D

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  38. I enjoyed reading your blog.

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Talk to the Cake Betch - I'll always respond. Unless you're a dick, then I'll just be mad.