My holiday gift from my doctors: more meds!

Alan, how would you feel if I added to your cocktail?”

If only these words came from the mouth of a cute bartender. But they came from one of my doctors, and the cocktail she spoke of was the one designed to keep my depression and anxiety manageable.

For me, manageable means having more good days than bad days. And, as I’ve posted here, I’ve had a spell of bad days recently. My doctors think it’s my depression–and not my anxiety–that’s the culprit. After consultation, they thought it would be best to add another depression med to the one I’m already taking (at the highest dosage allowed by law), plus what I’m taking for anxiety.

Upon hearing this, I shrugged and sighed. It shouldn’t have come as a complete surprise. I had some scary moments last week, moments that I thought would land me in the hospital. I didn’t need that, thank goodness. Still, I didn’t like the idea of more meds.

I have a love-hate relationship with my meds. In the past, I tried several natural remedies to help ease my depression and anxiety. But they never worked for me. I’m hardly a big fan of the pharmaceutical industry, but I have to admit that their little pills have helped me more than anything. It’s just that now, I’m taking increasing numbers of those pills, all under doctors’ orders. To be clear, I actually like my doctors. I trust them and I think they know what they’re doing.

But if they’re honest, even the best doctors treating mental illness will tell you that there’s a lot of hit and miss along the way, and treatment involves a lot of trial and error. Read almost any medical or science magazine, and you’ll find out that doctors and scientists are just NOW really beginning to understand how the brain works. I’m not a doctor, but damn. I often want to scream “What took you so long?”

For all these reasons, I kind of feel like a lab rat when the subject of meds comes up–particularly when doctors recommend dosage increases. But yes, I’m adding this new med to my cocktail. If it doesn’t work, I just have to let my “team” know, and it will be reduced or eliminated.

All I know is, the next time I hear about a cocktail, it better be from a cute bartender.


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