Thursday, February 17, 2011

All is Forlorn for I've Lost My Mind

My New Year started off with a thud in the form of a ridiculously strong sinus infection. I, being stubborn and having studied holistic health, refuse to take medication. I mean refuse. I will do absolutely everything else until the time comes when I have no choice, like this time, when I was about to leave the country for 9 days to go to India. I figured I should be as well as possible since I could very possibly get sick from something there. Go figure.

Time was running out so I decided to go for the meds. The first thing they gave me was a Z Pack which did nothing except irritate me for having just put all kinds of chemicals in my body with no actual benefit. Then they gave me something called Levaquin or Leviton. Whatever the real name is I highly suggest they rename it Levitate because that is what happened to me. 

Now, there is something you should know about me...I can't handle caffeine, anesthetic or most cold and flu meds.  Not because they don't work on me, but because they work too well, they turn me into a crazy fruitloop.

For example, when I had my wisdom teeth pulled out they put me under and when I woke up I was bawling. I mean my dog just died, boyfriend broke up with me, and my house burned down, kind of crying. They escorted me out the back door, yes, the back door, so as to not alarm the other patients. In the car my boyfriend asked me why I was crying and I stopped, briefly, to think about that. I responded with a hysterical "I don't know!?!?!" and then began to cry even more because I had not a clue as to why I was losing it.

For that same special occasion they gave me pain pills and later than night, after I had taken one, I decided to take a shower. Everything was fine until I tried to turn off the water and realized I had no idea how to do that. At all. Not the faintest idea how the faucet worked. I tried, repeatedly, but no amount of finger snapping, clapping, or trying various voice commands worked. I panicked as visions of my house flooding filled my mind. I eventually screamed and my boyfriend came in, laughed at me for several minutes as I explained my dilemma, and then showed me in a learn-to-tie-your-shoe kind of way how to work a faucet.

These are very good reasons why, above and beyond my school lessons, I am not a fan of things that are unnatural. I debated for an entire day on whether or not I was going to take this Levilor stuff. The side effects weren't too terrifying, so I eventually gave in. This is the account of what followed:

It's my day to work from home, so I'm preparing myself for conference calls, PowerPoints, and other work like things. I take the one recommended pill. Everything is fine and dandy. Then, I suddenly start to feel...awesome. Like Spiderman awesome, where I can detect things better than I could before. As I am pulling out Kleenex I realize how fascinating the sound of the Kleenex leaving the box is. It reminds me of a train going through a tunnel only on a much smaller, softer scale. I pull tissue after tissue out of the box, placing my ear close to it to try and fully absorb this awesomely awesome sound. Then...I discover my arms. I hold them up and just stare at them. This. Is. Fascinating. The way they're connected to me, but so free, able to move and do things...amazing. Reality kicks back in for a few minutes and I start to realize just how wacky I am. I also have a conference call coming up. Excellent.

I make it through the call successfully, only to start feeling the effects of the medicine again. I email my friend at work and tell her I'm losing it. She responds with a very supportive "I just laughed out loud and no one knows why, so now I look crazy!" I then pass out. One minute I'm trying to figure out why my computer screen is so shiny and beautiful and the next I'm waking up in a most uncomfortable position with my dog staring at me. Thank goodness it was my lunch break (seriously), but still, not the impression I'm going for. I don't recall the rest of the day which is a good thing, I'm sure.

Now to my point: I'm not opposed to Western medicine at all. If I were to break a leg right this second I would not call my very talented school friends up, have them burn some sage and chant over my leg, willing it to heal. No, I would head straight to the ER and get myself all fixed up, pronto.  I just happen to favor Eastern medicine and practices. No Chinese herbal meds or regular ol' foods have ever made me want to act like a puppy with a roll of toilet paper or above mentioned Kleenex box. I tend to believe that we over medicate. Life is hard, we're in a hurry and we don't have time to heal slowly. It's hard to find time to do what we do as it is, let alone to pay attention to the real reason we're feeling bad. When I used to get sore throats I'd take whatever over the counter stuff was recommended. Now I drink pure POM juice, eat some pears, cherries, and fresh pomegranates if they're available. I'm usually back to normal within a day.  It does require time. It is a little bit of work going at it the old fashioned way, but it comes easier and easier, the more you practice. One thing I know for sure, my body appreciates it the more I do it.

I find the medical commercials on TV odd and amusing. I mean think about how hard those companies work to try and make you want to go straight to your doctors office and ask for meds. First, it makes no sense to have medicine ads on TV. We are not doctors, we can't prescribe the drugs to ourselves, yet that's the goal of those ads. They want to make us think "Yes, I suffer from headaches, and yes, I have back pain, so maybe that med will work...I'll go ask my doctor." In all honestly, that really is their goal. Why do any commercials do what they do? To entice us. To make us want what they've got. The same goes for the medical ads. I say let the doctors do their jobs and let us just watch TV, plain and simple. Heck, even their own ads warn us about their products. The commercial starts with a loud, booming voice... "For severe headaches take the new and improved Thingawatchamadoodle"...then in a hushed, quiet voice..."May cause blindness, heart attacks, disembowelment, dizziness and insanity."  Excellent! I'll take five of those, thank you!

My thought is this: Do what you can, when you can, the most natural way you can. Try it out. Give it time. See how your body reacts. Treat your body like a good mystery book: get sucked into it, pay attention to each chapter and how it unwinds, and try and solve the puzzle. You might just surprise yourself. If you still need to watch the movie instead, go for it. You tried and that counts. Try again next time. Trying and not succeeding immediately is not failing, ever. It's giving yourself a chance as many times as you need. When all else fails, buy yourself a Kleenex box and have at it. I guarantee that will make you feel better.

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