Monday, March 02, 2009

Chasing rabbits? Headfirst down the rabbit hole...

I finished a delicious book last night.

It was Rebel Giants: the revolutionary lives of Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin by David R. Contosta. A lot of fun. I have read perhaps 5 or 6 Darwin biographies but scratching my head, no reading of a Lincoln bio that I can remember. Just absorbed the Lincoln mythos via osmosis. Must find one -- he was awesome! I am smitten, what a truly amazing man.

Especially taken by his darkness, a lifelong depression that he actually fully acknowledged, perhaps even at times reveled in -- at any rate, President Lincoln had no shame in claiming his melancholia.

Have been feeling kind of low, myself, lately.

This is not new.

In fact it is old and wearisome.

Things had gone on long enough that very many months ago I sought help and got a dandy prescription for an antidepressant.

This is not unusual, lots of people are doing well and getting better with chemical assistance.

But the antidepressant exacerbated insomnia and somehow the insomnia increased the asthma and the asthma medicine created more insomnia and then both treatments made me more anxious and before I knew it, I had drugs to compensate for the side effects, sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medication and new, better asthma medicines and pretty soon things began to go...

out of control.

Too many drugs and not a clue how I was really doing. Not to mention a few evenings of being totally out of my head. Add a couple glasses of wine to the mix every few days (and once, a recent totally lost evening that involved half a bottle of champagne) and well... disaster.

Quit everything.

Haven't crashed yet.

Image above is from an illustrated book called Living with a Black Dog by Matthew Johnstone. Honestly, for the most part, Churchill's black dog has been beaten to death by every gloomy blogger out there. But I found this book (well, at least the bit of it posted on The Guardian's website) enchanting.

Sorry, rather another non-post.

Next up: a juicy expose of my EXTREME crush on Stevie Smith. Fasten your seat belts. Apologies for this one.

Your contrite, morose, sorry old laundress.

16 comments:

mary said...

No wonder you didn't post for a while! I'm now drinking hops tea to help me sleep. Tastes like green dark beer, smells awful, but seems to work. Found out the licorice root tea I was drinking contains prednisone, which contributes to insomnia. Hope things get back on track for you real soon.
Reading Sorcery and Science POISON Friend and Foe, Dieter Martinetz/Karlheinz Lohs ISBN 3-361-00137-4
All kinds of information in this book from Germany. I wanted to read it for plant information, which is there, but also so much more!

Awesome Mom said...

It is not unusual for side effect cascades to happen. I was reading a fascinating book the other day titled "Against Medical Advice" about a boy that was struggling with OCD and Tourette's Syndrome. All the medications that his doctors were giving him ended up only making things a lot worse and life was hellish for him. Eventually he had enough and went on a program of no medication and behavioral therapy. I am not sure why the doctors did not at least try a combination of therapy and medication in the first place. It was in interesting read.

Citizen Reader said...

Dearest Laundress,
You didn't say ANYTHING about this today. Shame! Of course I most likely couldn't have been of any help but I would have liked to say, hang in there baby. If we would ever get some SUN one of these days perhaps the Vitamin D you would get naturally on your walks would help too. It's kind of a tough time of year, March, I always think.

I do so hope you feel better and can find your right solution with or without the drugs. I hear you on the insomnia--I'm still on enforced 6-months menopause which is similarly affecting my sleep and really pissing me off. But hopefully that will wear off soon....

And of course a nice night in the next couple of weeks to chat over books and the possibility of summer and other good things would do us both good, I think (hope).

Know I am over here thinking good thoughts for you--

The Laundress said...

Hullo Mary and Awesome and CR,

Interesting reading that you women are doing.

I am a huge pots 'n pots of tea drinker, but not sure I could handle smelly hops tea. Sounds awful, how do you do it, Mary? I am drinking ginger tea from the Asian food mart by the gallon, maybe that is too stimulating? Sure tastes good.

Awesome, did you know both Tourette's and OCD are closely tied to thalamic issues? That is curious, I will check my libraries for your book. Thanks!

Looking forward to a night out, CR. Aw, 6 months of artificial menopause sounds rough. I think I am wandering through 6 years of some sort of unnatural one myself...

Bookish evening will be grand, thanks for the invite! yep, the sun will shine tomorrow...

Bankerchick said...

Well I am on permanent forced Menopause *i'm 62* I had insomnia after my Mom passed with odd dreams when I did sleep...They put me on Paxil and luckily did not have such problems. But i have taken pills to counteract other pills as had mr BC and that is tough to get around. Good for you. I am going to suggest you book to mr BC as he is a great Lincoln fan.

mary said...

Doctors pour medicaments, of which they know little, in order to cure diseases of which they know even less, into people, of whom they know nothing at all.
Voltaire (from the Poison book)

Norma said...

Poor Laundress. I'm so sorry!

Maddy said...

Well if it's any consolation [which it probably isn't] my mum recently started anti-depressants at the age of 70 plus as she finally admitted that there was just a chance that they might help. They have probably due to luck or a doctor who could have a god stab at the right medication. Hope you get there sooner.
Best wishes

ThePreemie Experiment said...

Hugs to you dearest Laundress! Hope you are feeling better now that the snow has melted and the earth is warming once again.

If not, come here for a visit and we'll be insomniacs together. At least we'll be able to keep each other company.

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Jaymz said...

Licorice root tea huh? I've been on that in the past and it definatly caused insomnia... Been off it for six months and the insomnia hasn't loosened it's grip. I have exima (or however it's spelt) and would like to get my hands on some of that licorice root tea. I'm trying to avoid taking the over the counter stuff on account of the nasty side affects. If you (anyone) feels like it I can be reached at jaymzc6@yahoo.com I doubt I'll find my way back to this site, being a dude and all : ) insomnia will take you to strange places at times!

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