I had tried to beat my addiction to Gabapentin before. Over several months I slowly reduced my intake, but I couldn’t get down to zero. 100mg in the morning and 100mg at night and my brain was on fire.
I decided to stay at that dose, and sure enough over time, I started to settle. My brain didn’t seem to be on fire and running on overdrive all the time. My constant dreamlike state that seems to be how my hallucinations get to me became bearable and manageable again. The noises in my head eased. So, I decided it is time to try again!
The morning tablet was where I had decided to start. I knew that sleep was severely affected, so leaving the night dose to last, seemed a better option. Within the first day, I could feel this thing stirring inside.
It wasn’t as bad, but it was taking control of me, and I had to do something to fight this, or I would only end up back where I started. Everything about my day was 100% Gabapentin driven. My brain was getting faster and faster. It is hard to explain, but I’m sure you have known those moments when your computer is trying to do too much all at once, and you get the horrible moment when it stalls. It hangs there, and that, Spinning Wheel of Death, going around and around and getting nowhere. The only thing you can do is turn it off and reboot to start it up again and try again until next time. It is this what was happening in my head all the time. My brain would seem to get more energised, and it felt as if every brain cell was trying to work all at the same time. All my life was a flash of now and the next moment. Was it real, or a dream? Was I here? I was aware that my body was locked, unable to move and then nothing. It would get to a point where I would come back from black. Like with the computer analogy, this is where I think my brain had that spinning wheel of death. My entire being was stalling, and it could only reboot to start again. This moment was quite cathartic. I would feel fresh, bright, but void of any feeling; then the pace would start to build again. It is strange, but this felt very similar to how I feel when I come around from a significant seizure, so there must be some similarities.
The only thing that I seem to be able to do was more. What I mean is, trying to keep my brain engaged, or sidetracked, forcing it to work at something else. I know this may seem strange, but it worked. It did have its downside, and I’m struggling with it still. I go out exercising in my wheelchair three, or four times a week. I usually do about 26 miles in a week, but now I was doing more, much more. I couldn’t stop. The effort involved seemed to help and quell my brain. I suppose this must be the high you hear about when people exercise to the extreme. However, exercise is not the only thing I seem to be obsessive about; it is when I start something, like gardening, I can not stop.
The Gabapentin, or more the withdrawal, leaves me struggling to start anything, but then struggling just as much to stop!
It has been well over a month now since trying for the second time, and I’m off Gabapentin completely. I’m not there yet, but I know I’m not going back.
I think it comes down to the same for all things; It is about the strength of self-control rather than letting any monster be the master of you!
You see it all the time, puppet people willingly being controlled by something or someone else and confessing it’s not their fault, they can not do anything about it! But all the time, everyone knows, that is not true, it is all about you and only you!
There used to be a dark dream I had a lot. You may have had the same thing happen to you. I’m stuck in a dark, unknown place and I can feel something trying to get to me, something wants to hurt me, something evil. The closer it gets, the harder the struggle becomes. The muscles hurt; it feels as if the ground is swallowing you, making the movement forward, harder and harder. The tension builds that heart bounding fear of the unknown; every sinew in your body is screaming, and the inevitable seems obvious! That total ending screams as you burst into awakeness, but the fear, the fear is still there!
It all changed that night when I had the strength to stop, turn around and face it! Yes, I did this in my dream! I’ve never had that dream since and I now seem to have an inner strength to face any demon!
My next demon is Citalopram!
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