I don’t know if the amount of medication I’m on is considered a lot, a little or just right. I take Abilify, Effexor, Topamax and, most recently, was put on Wellbutrin. The doctor said the Wellbutrin is supposed to make me want to get up and get stuff done. But here’s the thing: I used to take a lot of drugs. You know what makes you want to get up and get stuff done? A handful of Ritalin or a fat line of Cocaine.
For someone who’s accustomed to the instant and reliable effects of drugs, the slow and unsure results of medication can be frustrating. What I don’t understand is if something like Adderall works and makes me feel like a human being, why I can’t just be prescribed that and be on my merry way?
I suppose it has something to do with being a drug addict and an alcoholic and the fact that I’d inevitably abuse and misuse whatever I was given that actually worked. I guess that’s what you’d call a catch-22 … there’s a way to feel better, but the way is either illegal or would lead me back down a dark path that took me to bad places, so the cure could be worse than the illness.
I got my second DUI about four years ago and that’s when I gave up all of my illicit hobbies, but I’d obviously be lying if I said I didn’t miss them. I miss the drinking least of all, but I do crave a beer or a glass of wine from time to time. Which is weird, because my drink of choice was Jack Daniels.
I’m in no hurry to get another DUI because I’m pretty sure the third one is a felony and would mean mandatory jail time. The 24 hours I spent in jail on the second one was enough to know that I’m not the type of person who would do well with incarceration. In fact, I opted for 90 days of house arrest with and ankle monitor rather than spend just 30 days (which probably would have turned out to be only two weeks) in county lock up.
I found that the other women were, for the most part, welcoming and not at all scary. No one wanted to beat me up or steal my shoes. But the lack of privacy, constant cacophony and terrible treatment by the deputies was more than I was willing or able to deal with. Being locked in my own home for three months was far more appealing.
But were I to get caught driving under the influence again … and I have no doubt that I would get caught … I doubt that house arrest would be an option. I also watched my alcoholism progress from blackouts to trips to the ER to stays in psych units to DUIs and I’m legitimately afraid that if I were to drink again I would hurt or kill someone else. It’s a good fear to have and it keeps me sober.
But the drugs … they gave me the energy and motivation to do things, to live my life. They let me feel things that I no longer feel. I’m not saying I’m dead set on finding a way back to taking Ritalin or Vicodin or any of the other drugs that worked for me. I just wish there was a legitimate medication that would have the same effect, that would make the clouds part and the sun shine through. I just wish there was something that would let me feel alive again.