Some of you may have been wondering where I have been since my blog abruptly stopped back in August 2013. Let me assure you, I was not having a good time and this post is likely to be a rather harrowing read.
In order to explain where I’ve been, it’s necessary for me to provide a little background.
Almost 15 summers ago, I gave birth to a beautiful son. It was a traumatic delivery that culminated with my losing nearly 70% of my blood when my uterus didn’t contract. At that time, I was rushed into surgery for an emergency procedure. I should’ve know I was in trouble when I was still in the hospital after a week. I should have known I was in even bigger trouble when my insurance company agreed to reimburse for a personal care aide. My husband returned to work while I was still in the hospital, assuming I was perfectly fine with the assistance of the aide.
After 3 months, my blood was tested and it was determined that I was fine.
The reality was that I wasn’t fine at all.
My crippling insomnia was coupled with a horrible tightness in my throat that felt like I’d swallowed a pebble.
After years of struggling with little sleep and the feeling that my throat was going to close up, I finally went to see my primary care physician. We tried several antidepressants, each one revving me up more than the last. (I now know that some people have a paradoxical reaction to antidepressants; instead of calming me down, they made me even more anxious.) Eventually, my primary care doctor wrote me a prescription for a few little yellow pills.
All my symptoms magically disappeared with that first pill. Suddenly, I could sleep again. And I could breathe.
I was referred to a psychiatrist who asked me what hadn’t worked and what had.
“The last stuff I took was amazing,” I said. “I think it was called Klonopin.”
The psychiatrist opened the top drawer of his desk to retrieve his prescription pad. “Good choice,” he said.
Over the next seven years, no doctor ever suggested I should discontinue using clonazepam, that it is actually a medication recommended for short-term use only.
That the stuff does terrible things to one’s neurotransmitters.
Everyone was so casual about my clonazepam use, I never questioned its safety. I should have known not to trust anyone who promised Paradise in a pill, but I’d always trusted my doctors. There was no reason to think that he was prescribing something that could hurt me.
I couldn’t have been more wrong.
(NOTE: I’m so glad to be writing again. More about where I’ve been for the last 7 months to come. I’m doing this very slowly. In installments. With a lot of time to breathe in between because it’s all still very fresh. Much gratitude to bloggers Misty’s Laws, Molly Field, Lisha Fink, Nina Badzin, Rivki Silver, David Walker, Kitt Crescendo, Ruchi Koval & Erin Margolin for their steadfast support over the last 7 months. Appreciation for my real life friends & family will be given in an ongoing way, for the rest of my days on this planet.)