How Quickly We Forget.

I lay waiting on the couch, semi-conscious, my eyelids flitting faster than I could control. The bottle of pills I had neatly organized on my coffee table seemed to be countless, but there were seven. Seven bottles of medication to stifle my anxiety, bi-polar disorder, chronic insomnia, and ever shifting moods. It's hard to recall what happened after I called 911 as my head lay in my son's lap, praying for the ambulance to come. All I know is those seven bottles I left on the table turned from panicked organization to a suspected suicide attempt once the paramedics arrived.

I remember so many people entering my house that night that I felt like the walls would explode. I couldn't think straight and the light switch by the front door began to spark and pop once an officer turned it on to get a better look at the scene- or so I thought, and began to yell at him for.  My kids were taken to another room where someone sat with them as not only I was questioned, but they were too. I had no clue what was going on. My body was twitching uncontrollably, my teeth chattered as I tried to form words and my eyes kept rolling in the back of my head. I wanted to tell them over and over I had not tried to commit suicide, I wanted to tell them those seven bottles were what my doctor prescribed to me, I wanted to tell them the added medication from just a few days ago was making me feel weird- I wanted to tell them anything, but I couldn't speak. I was placed on a stretcher and sent off to the emergency room.

An eternity seemed to pass before we arrived at the hospital, my body began convulsing but I was still conscious and exceptionally confused. I had witnessed my mother have seizures and this mimicked her symptoms entirely. I was panicked brain with no control over my body. I felt as if I was watching myself heave and choke on my own saliva from outside my body. I kept telling myself to reach for the button near my bed to call for help, but my arms felt like dead weight next to me. I am not sure how much time went by but eventually my body calmed. 
I was alone, I was freezing cold, and I was trying not to think about crying. 
Where were the doctors? Where were the nurses? Why was no one checking on me? 
Eventually someone did come, she checked my heart rate, my pulse, my eyes, asked me a few questions before hurriedly remarking, "Well, this is what happens when you take too many psych meds..." as she walked out the room. 

This is what happens when you take too many psych meds....

I was confused. I had done exactly as I was told by my doctor. Each month I checked in with my doctor. Each month, my weight was monitored.  Each month it steadily dropped. I was in fact, not eating. At all. My medication had not only effected my appetite but it triggered my eating disorder.  I told my doctor this, she added another pill. My medication was also causing hallucinations and issues with vision. So I told my doctor. She added another pill. Month by month went by. My weight continued to decrease, yet, according to her, I was "fine". I dutifully took my pills like breakfast, lunch and dinner and kept on keeping on. I was deteriorating before my own eyes, and my eating disorder blurred this enough to where I loved it. I loved the way my skin stuck to my bones, and I fed on more pills any time I began to feel shame for the way I looked. 

The next morning, I was home from the hospital and woke groggily to fix myself a cup of coffee. My memory around this time is exceptionally foggy but I know that I found myself on the kitchen floor next to the oven, where I had not been a second ago. The coffee was across the room on  a counter.... I couldn't even remember making it, let alone putting it down. I brushed off the incident, told myself I was fine, and carried about the morning feeling exceptionally dizzy and confused. Later that day I found myself feeling as if another seizure like episode was coming on. I laid on the couch and my body shook ferociously as my head cocked back without control. I remember choking, gagging, telling myself I needed to roll to my side, but I couldn't. After each episode, and there were many, for days and days on end, I came out of my stupor in a complete fog. I soon began to FaceTime my friends in other states so they could watch me during my episodes in case something happened. I was terrified I would die and my kids would be left alone in my house. I prepared Trace with all of our information in case he had to call 911 again, I gave them pep talks and encouraged them to be brave, all while I convulsed and threw up and passed out in between. For days. It was an absolute nightmare. No one knew what to do or how to help and the doctors continually told me to wait for my scheduled appointments. No one had answers and I felt so alone. 

I couldn't get the nurses words out of my head, even after the brain scans and multiple follow up appointments and reassurances that "It was late that night."  "She must have been tired."  "It was wrong of her to say." Apparently I was fine, apparently she was right, I am still unsure.

Eventually the medications found their way out of my system, the episodes passed and I began to find myself again. The hell I was experiencing faded quicker than I thought it would. A year later and a much needed break from chemicals, I am here with a few days left before my initial appointment with a new psychiatrist. I am hoping things go better than last year. I am terrified of starting any medication again for fear of repeating the same issues but I have hope. Things will be different this time and I will keep myself in check. Life has thrown so many curve balls my way and has taught me so much about my courage and inner fortitude. I thought living with mental illness was a death sentence, but what I've found to be true is not dealing with it in a healthy and conscious way is the real killer. I am not ashamed of who I am and what I need to do to be my best possible self in this lifetime. I simply want the chance to keep fighting, and last year pushed me past the brink of my breaking point on so many levels. 

I am here for more than a simple battle with my mind. 

This time will be better...

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