Four Pills a Day

I take four pills in the evening. My alarm goes off every night at 10 PM but it takes about an hour and half before I muster enough energy to roll off the bed. Tonight it’s about 11:50 PM when I get around to it.

The first two are just my daily hair, skin, and nails vitamins. They legitimately taste like French vanilla and I give them mad props for that. They’re large and shimmery, reminding me of an oversized fish scale.

The small is the Topamax or topiramate (for generic). They taste pretty bitter and generally go down quite easily without much encouragement. I used to only take just 25 mg but it’s been upped recently so each one is 50 mg now. The Topamax keeps what I call the Mother-of-all-Migraines (MOAM) away and also treats seizures (that I luckily don’t suffer from). It’s not one of those my head hurts, it’s throbbing, I need a nap, I’m dizzy, Oh the lights. It’s the, Fuck! Why is my bedroom sideways? Why is everything spinning but it’s not? I can’t even leave my fucking bed. And repeat this for seven days straight. It’s like that. 50 mg for chronic migraines compared to other peoples’ cocktails is nothing. They’re on 200 mg twice a day, morning and night. They’re dropping 80lbs. in a three months and shit. I wish I could drop 15.

That’s what the Topamax is supposed to also do as a side effect – make you lose weight. It’s also a mood stabilizer, too. Doctors seem to like prescribing it for people with bipolarity. I seem to be more mellow overall. But the side effects are what’s really killing me.

Topamax makes you into a fucking zombie. If you’ve been around long enough, you’ll know what I’m talking about when I’m referring to this pill turning your thought process from Google Fiber to AOL Dial Up at 56 kbps. It stupefies you. It doesn’t make you complacent or anything, but I guess if it stabilizes your highs and lows of your moods it might as well, right?

I call it the brain fog.

It’s like you’re running around on a semi-high all day except it’s not one of those pleasurable highs. It’s more like being drunk and unaware in the forest from the Blair Witch Project. It’s more like passively flowing through life in an “obtusified” state. And being a writer, the brain fog essentially slows me down to the point where it’s so hard for me to write or read as fast and efficient as I can. It’s some kind of cosmic joke. For a writer, being in the moment with my thoughts is everything to me but so is keeping MOAM away as well. It makes me want to sleep all day and nap. I never fucking nap. It honestly makes me feel like a dumbass.

Ultimately, I’m left with only a few options where I can either give up the Topamax and risk the migraine hitting me one day (hopefully limited to one MOAM episode a year), switching to another script, or just finding a way to cope with the side effects and still write in this state.

I don’t know. Hopefully, I’ll figure this out. I’m getting a bit tired and I guess I’ll go ahead and call it a night.

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