Zombie, zombie, zombie-ie-ie

Zombie, zombie, zombie-ie-ie

Yesterday during my online therapy, I disclosed to my psychologist that whilst seemingly perfectly ok on the outside, I was having to use every ounce of willpower not to hang up (or whatever the online equivalent is), leg it to my bedroom and curl up into a ball in bed. She was quite surprised by this admission, as indeed I did appear to be perfectly ok.

I am a very good actor, I explained and she agreed.

I was at the time shaking (the tremor I get when I am up, agitated, excited, worried or for lots of other reasons) and wanted to leap out of my own body and scream back at myself. I can’t explain it any other way than that as this is what it feels like when I am in no man’s land between up and down.

I have been thinking about this today with some degree of bewilderment as I still felt strange; but not so much in a bad way. I had not felt like I did yesterday since starting my medication plan at the start of December. Quetiapine had completely knocked me for six after I made it up to the 400mg per day dosage, and I had been thinking for the last couple of weeks that my life was now doomed to a state of semi-consciousness for around twelve hours a day. 

From around 10am to 10pm I was compos mentis, but in-between I was good for nothing and this was presenting a little bit of a problem with work and what was left of our social life in these Covid impacted times. I’d usually manage to log on by around 9am every day and would do some administrative tasks whilst the effects of the previous night’s pills wore off, and then could start on some proper work sometime after ten. At some point I’d have to commute into my office in London which was going to involve a journey that started just before 7am and this was worrying. That point was today.

There are a few theories in play here as to why I felt odd yesterday and today. Firstly, could my state (mental and physiological) be attributed to the worry of having to commute in and see my colleagues in non-video face-to-face form after a few months hiatus? Or perhaps could the medication not be strong enough any more to stave off the mood swings?

This scares the shit out of me, as it would imply that perhaps the dosage would have to be increased at some point in the near future to keep my occasional rather mental state at bay. Sod that for a laugh – I don’t think I could tolerate feeling any more zombified than I have been of late.

My psychologist has however been starting to teach me the basics of CBT. I have also been musing over the only part of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People that I managed to read before losing the book.

So I have started to think – what if maybe everything that happens is not the end of the world? Could it be that my body was trying to overcome the side effects of the medication so that I could function again properly. Or could it just be that the medication was starting to settle in and my life could return to a more normal state?

I managed to get up early enough this morning without feeling like a sack of shit. I went into the office no problem and am now on my way home after a very productive day.

So what is it? I have to look at how I feel now in order to make that decision.

First off, I have been locking my jaw and grinding my teeth for a considerable portion of the day. I have also been very talkative and confident. The first part is a negative; but I have done this ever since I was a child and could be the equivalent of a nervous tic. The second part here could be positive or negative depending on how you look at it. I talked a lot, but was not a blithering idiot, more a voice of reason and sensibility.

For now, or until my body/mind tells me otherwise, I have come to the conclusion that the locking of the jaw was nerves of being back in the office; it was always going to be a strange old day. Being talkative and confident though is not solely the possession of a hypomanic state – I can be like that much of the time. I am naturally quite shy and am a very private person most of the time (save for this blog now which tosses that all out the window), but have managed over the years to develop a more confident public persona – my wife likes to call it “the work” me. For some reason I talk using a more American/Irish accent which is strange; although not inexplicable as I lived in the States for a while as a kid and my parents are Irish.

So there you have it – I was a little nervous about going back into the office, but went in and had a great day in the end.

The normal negative me would have concluded that the world was shortly going to end. I think I like this more informed method of thinking I am discovering.

Onward and upward.

Scully

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