I saw my shrink again the other day. It went pretty much as I expected it to, which in many ways is a good thing. I explained that the combination of adding Chantix and then quitting smoking changed my med levels dramatically. I “backed up” my theory by explaining the over-sleeping, chronic fatigue, and inability to lose weight. I handed him the lab reports — all normal — that my primary doctor ran, just to rule out a physical cause.
Dr. O not only agreed with me, he said he is actually surprised I haven’t gained more weight. It turns out, the medicine I take to help with my sleep problems is also prescribed for anorexia. No f***ing wonder my pants aren’t any looser! He then went on to say that he wanted to keep all of my meds the same, despite everything. I wasn’t at all surprised. Chantix is notorious for causing severe mood problems, so the fact that my mood has been (mostly) stable is a small miracle.
I walked out of the clinic lost in thought and retrospection. I’m bummed yet slightly proud of myself. I have another 4 months of Chantix — creative block and sexual side effects to boot. I most likely won’t be able to wear my “skinny clothes” this summer. I will probably spend a lot of beautiful days sleeping late and going to bed early, and I won’t be the most pleasurable company to keep. Yet, what a difference three years of experience can make! The “old me” wouldn’t have been able to handle feeling crappy for a few months. I would have argued with Dr. O in vain, only to make my own med changes… and the bricks would have come tumbling down.
Instead, I feel like the last-place runner in a marathon — the tortoise that wins the race. Even as I struggle to think positive and all the happy stuff I learned in therapy, I feel an inner drive that keeps pulling me back on track. Perhaps all those years of struggling — the vicious mood swings and frequent hospital stays — were worth it in the end.