Thursday, April 5, 2007

Time and again

Time and again, I wonder through life thinking much has been moving forwarded--- only to realize that back to the ground zero again…

After my last posting… up lifting and so forth…

The reduction of Zoloft had its effects kicked in.

I did not realized it until the full-blown episode of the depression manifested itself in the form of anger etc…

It was only until then did I realize that I had wasted away a whole week of my life unmotivated and allowed myself accomplishing nothing.

After the meeting with the psychiatrist, I came straight home and took the dosage that was missing in my system.

The effect kicked in immediately.

With exercises, I was able to get on with my everyday life and continue with lab-rat kind of inquisitive explorations.

The whole week of slacking did not help in the need of meeting deadline.

I was supposed to send in an assignment for this course I am taking.

In an email, I explained to the professor, “I have been sort of under the weather” and will have to hand things in a bit later.

Another week went by.

I gradually came to notice the growing sense of detachment from the world and, thereafter, the loss of ability for me to concentrate.

It occurred to me that… possibly, what the feeling of the world is not real might have something to do with my inability to concentrate….

I shouldn’t have waited another 3 days before the adjustment in the meds to take place.

However, I thought to myself… I should be able to hold it till my Monday meeting with the doctor and to show this other state of my routine life.

Ended up, it was a bad judgment call on my part because, by Monday, my short term memory had shrunken a few digits and my reading comprehension was gone.

Walking down the street from my day job to my night job, I looked around the detached surrounding, only to realize that, the last time I felt this way, in the coo-coo’s nest I was on the 8th floor.

On Tuesday, after the minor decrease of my dosage, I sensed an increase in the motivation level although, still, despite conscious efforts, my attention span only allowed me to read 5-6 words each “span,” which did not really help me in comprehending the texts I was attempting to read.

To compensate for my reading disability, I eventually came up with the coping mechanism of switching from concept grapping to key word scanning when making my attempts to read. After trying for God-Knows-How-Long to beat my shortened attention span, I found out that, although I have difficulties holding on to external inputs, I have no problem accessing my long term memory. In response, I started to force myself to divide sentences into chunks of 4-5 words, scan for key words and use the key words to for force out some relevant prior knowledge.

Assimilation and accommodation--- Never knew before how synchronously these two processes play out in my everyday life until then.

In retrospective, it just occurred to me that such must be what starting and/or struggling readers experience in their everyday life and I am blessed to not having to be stuck in that state of frustration--- I guess.

That day, I considered all options, reflected on my progression so far, and felt that I was still too much drugged out. Yet, my doctor’s worries don’t seem to be too aligned with my anal retentiveness about keeping my cognitive capacity (and that’s what I said to the doctor at the emergency room the very first time I got myself admitted into the hospital).

For the first time in my life, I turned myself into a patient, non-compliant.

I had the dosage lowered by another 25 mg that night, waking up still feeling all drugged out-- yet, with reading disability of lesser degree of severity.

Overnight, I found myself transformed from a chicken without a head to a headless chicken (with higher degree of energy or one might pathologize it as hyperactivity).

Today is Thursday.

On my way home, I found myself still stuck in a sense of disassociation from the external world.

I got home at 7:00 and felt I was gonna go directly to bed to take a good nap.

Yet, I knew that I have a choice that patients in the psychiatric ward do not have.

I could go to the gym and I know, on the exercise machine, my head could focus and I will be able to read.

And, I went to reclaim my cognitive capacity—temporarily—Yet, I got it.

On my way home, it snowed… or flurry, what you might call.

I looked into the light and watched the flurries coming down.

With the contribution of endorphins, I stood there—realizing that, it has been a while, since I felt, in this world, I am alive.

Earlier in the day, I went to a talk where the speaker referenced to a poem by W.H. Auden regarding the merciful mechanism in the human mind.

For me, I would rather deconstruct that mechanism of mercy in search a state of living.

I do not live to be shortened on my cognitive capacities—be it the result of psychiatric problems or the side effects of medications.

So, it was yesterday, on my way home. It occurred to me that—what a waste of my life… all these attempts and slacks put forth to cope and to survive. It was also yesterday when I had to send the same professor, again, another email, “It is going to sound like the dog ate my homework again…. But I have been sort of under the weather again this past week or so and will try to get the homework out asap.”

Why can’t I be like anyone else?

How could I be under the weather while I am healthy like a cow?

Then, the thought came up reminding me that, no matter what I do not have, I have my blog.

I don’t know what good my blog could do. I could only wish for some good for the collective.

And, I guess, that would be the only way for me to make sense of my life so far—the tearing from drug withdraw, the amotivation, the decapacitated cognitive ability, and the whole 9 yards.

This is, I guess, the only thing I could hold on to, when it snows in April—it is ground zero again and, based on the progression so far, the cycle will, very likely, never end (at least until I stop kicking)…


Well, not too depressed. Just a bit of sentimental in my reflection in action. lol

The selfish me, also, beg you to live your life, for, your life-- I shall hold it as mine (and that shall be taking vicarious learning, collective cognition, extended cognition, relational self, interdependent self, and the collective cultural values to the highest degree 8-O lol)

Also, the inability to identify the problems earlier on tells me to be humble-- before the mental God... lol