Getting off Zoloft

Day 4

This has been a wild ride. I finally decided I had to take my own advice. We have a baby on the way, and I needed to be whole by the time she gets here. I was taking two different medicines (Zoloft and Lamictal) so we halved and eliminated the Lamictal first.

I honestly didn’t think the 12.5 mg of Zoloft was playing any role in my life. Man, I was wrong. It’s not completely out of my system yet, but I’m sleeping better, seeing better, and easily living in the moment. My senses are heightened. I feel more athletic. I know it was the right thing.

Always remember that there was a reason you started taking pills in the first place. Obviously, if you don’t address the fears that were plaguing you before you started your meds, you’re not going to be whole when you stop.

Weaning off is not fun or easy. I was legitimately having anxiety attacks the past couple days, but I’ve learned other ways to cope.

Zoloft effected how I felt emotion. I don’t know exactly how, but I felt a surge of emotions the past couple days. Fear, shame, guilt, and love. It masked all these for me and masked my moral compass.

I was my own god on Zoloft. There was never any ever true getting lost in the moment. I was filtering every word I said and everything I did through my own set of standards. It was exhausting, and caused a delay in my brain’s processing.

I haven’t felt as happy as I do now since I was a teenager. It’s just great. Like for the first time in years, I’m doing streaks of the right things. And for the right reasons

I’m sure there’s more to go through, but now I have the tools to cope.

Depending on the psychiatrist that saw me, I think you realistically could’ve diagnosed me with any of these conditions over different times in the past decade: bipolarism, depression, schizophrenia, ADD, ADHD, OCD, and probably others. My psychiatrist didn’t even want me to get off everything, but I knew it was what I had to do. I had to be purely me-no brain altering drugs-and be happy when the baby gets here. I knew I didn’t need another variable thrown in the mix before I started the weaning process.

So if you’re starting to think about weaning off, here’s what you need to know:

  • You’ll know when and if you’re ready. My process involved eliminating caffeine from my diet and improving my vision.
  • It’s going to be unpleasant.
  • Have coping mechanisms prepared. Prayer, meditation, whatever, you’re going to need it.
  • Lean on your friends and family. You cannot do this alone.
  • Be honest about the way you feel but make no big decisions.
  • You’re going to feel an irrational surge of emotion. Be ready.

It’s all worth it. There’s light at the end of the tunnel.

Here’s Your Brain Model

So far here’s what we have. If you only read one thing I write, let this be it. Do not take my word for it. Think critically and with an open mind.

  • You were given a perfectly functional brain.
  • Your eyes are completely capable of seeing.
  • Aging starts in the mind.
  • Your brain can be reprogrammed.
  • There is only one brain disease.
  • You are completely capable of restful sleep.
  • We can prove Intelligent Design without any math or complicated science.
  • Genetics doesn’t explain everything.
  • There is a mental ground state where you see your best, perform your best, and sleep your best.
  • The brain follows an entropy model.

  • Your brain is capable of forming new memories, and recalling old ones.

  • The brain is a logic engine, with no time component.

 

There is only one [brain] disease

I don’t know what to call it yet. But give me a chance to explain.

Here are the symptoms:

  • depression
  • obsessive compulsive behavior
  • fear
  • loss of eyesight
  • tiredness [poor sleep]
  • aging
  • anxiety
Mood
  • apathy
  • general discontent
  • guilt
  • hopelessness
  • loss of interest
  • mood swings
  • sadness
Sleep
  • early awakening
  • excess sleepiness
  • insomnia
  • restless sleep
Whole body
  • excessive hunger
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • restlessness
Behavioral
  •  agitation
  • excessive crying
  • irritability
  • social isolation
Cognitive
  • lack of concentration
  • slowness in activity
  • thoughts of suicide
Weight
  • weight gain
  • weight loss

 

Treatment:

  • Caffeine
  • Glasses
  • SSRIS
  • Stimulants
  • Illicit Drugs
  • Alcohol

Each of these loses their effect over time in the same manner. As the mind develops resistances or weaknesses, depending on how you look at it, it becomes dependent on these drugs [and devices] as their strengths need to gradually increase as the patient’s mind weakens.

Cure:

No known cures at this point. The disease typically progresses as the subject ages. The mind and the body begin to break down. The subject eventually dies of “natural causes.”

So how can I possibly lump all this together? We were all given the most perfect and complex machines to run our bodies, and some of us need to re-calibrate, or even need to relearn how to use them. Our computers catch these loops, and latch on to our treatments, and we can start downward spirals that end up killing us, sooner or later.

Your eyes are the way in. They can change your mind. They are your treatment. You brain is perfectly capable of doing everything that you need it to on its own. Your fears are slowing it down. Fears about the present, the past, or the future. Maybe your dysfunction has the same name as mine, or maybe not.

You were made for happiness. Your mind is a perfect tool that you need to relearn how to use. Fix your vision and fix your mind.

 

Eye Twitches

I’m sure you’ve seen one of your friend or coworkers struggle with a twitchy eye. I’m sure you’ve struggled with one at least once or twice before. Actually, if you’re reading this, chances are great that you have some refraction errors, some I’m guessing you’ve had more than just a little eye twitching over the years.

Here are some reasons that we say that your eyes twitch:

Wow. Those all seem like negative things. They all seem like things that we’ve either discussed before or will in the future. All of these things effect your vision and your brain. Whatever is causing your your eye twitch, stop it. It’s not good for your brain.

Consider this for a moment. When were you your happiest? Have you ever seen a kid stressed out, smoking, or with alcohol or caffeine problems? Of course not. If you’re like me, you had a happy childhood. You were pretty carefree and never had to deal with much stress, fatigue, medication and definitely not glasses. So what changed? What would you have to change to find your true self, the past you that was perfect?

If all of these items affect your vision and your brain, how deep does our cycle go. If my sleep and caffeine intake and Zoloft affect my vision, but my vision gradually gets worse, and my SSRIs lose their effect over time, what is happening? This is what they call in the medical profession as aging, but really you’re stuck in a cycle of misery. There is a way out: the entry point is the eyes.

The Nerd

Enter the nerd. Five foot eight, rail thin, with braces, and coke-bottle lenses. He’s as awkward as they come. He looks as smart as he is unathletic. He talks nasally and seems to constantly struggle with the sniffles. He looks at home behind his laptop, but may never carry on a conversation with a real woman. His hand has a callous from his grip on his inhaler. He wouldn’t be caught dead on a dance floor.

I get to say these things, because I’ve been there. Look at this guy [insert picture eventually]. I know what every bit of that feels like. My only saving grace is that I always had a knack for sports. You name it, I could play it, and well for the most part. And I never had an inhaler.

What if this is all preventable? What if nerdom is a choice? I say choice. The guy was doomed from the moment he sat in with the optometrist. adult-beard-boy-220453.jpg

He’s probably underweight, and battling with anxiety, not caused by, but certainly not helped by his corrective lenses. The level of anxiety is essentially trapped from that moment onward, because if he relaxes from that point onward, he will not be able to focus in his lenses. You can go ahead and call these “quirks” of his personality. He wasn’t born like this. He wasn’t meant to be like this. He was meant to be calm. He was mean to be happy. 

Don’t mistake this as me saying that I think every skinny white kid could play in the NBA. Because I’m not. What I am saying though, is that there is an optimal self, some sort of athlete, in there somewhere.

If you haven’t found it yet, it’s not too late. 

 

 

Avengers, Anxiety, and Aging

We went to a movie tonight, and I had several panic attacks. Not because the movie stressed me out, but because I feel like I am starting to learn my role in all this, and I’m absolutely terrified. The more I learn and better I see, the clearer all my distractions are.

The trickiest part for me is how to convince anyone that this ridiculous theory is true, and how to get it out to the masses. There have been a bunch of books along these lines, without the same theories. But that essentially said that vision is all in the mind. Those theories didn’t take to mainstream, and there’s no way that these will.

I’m at peace and am easing my anxiety by meditation of sorts. Maybe more of eye exercises. But if the eyes are the keys to the soul, and our eyes are worse than ever, are our souls worse than ever?

The mission to be a better athlete somehow took me to this point. To play better tennis. To run faster. To look better. To age slower. The answer is easy: the mind. The solution is not always as simple. And there’s no possible way that I can promise immediate results, but I know that I can help people.

aged-alarm-clock-antique-552774

Some ideas to consider: why are black people better athletes? I always thought that this class of people was bread through slavery to be superior to other races. What if their demographics, diet, and culture are responsible for this? What if we are in fact created equal?

What if the first thing that ages is the mind? Then the body ages. The eyes are the first signs of the brain aging.

Obviously, these are all theories at this point. I was hoping to find some pools of data to pull from and just make some correlations. No luck so far. And I don’t know that I have the time, the energy, or the resources to see this thing through.