Friday, June 15, 2007

I feel afraid

One side effect of risperdal is weight gain. I have dealt with that. A weirder side effect of risperdal is lactating breasts, I freaked out a little, and then dealt with that. But a very scary side effect is called Tardive Diskinesia, which is an involuntary twitching of some muscles, which is caused by the use of antipsychotic medications (this may be where the "twitch" stereotype of mentally ill people comes from.)

I have had a twitching muscle here or there since starting risperdal, but we all get a fluttery muscle now and then. However, in the last month or so my cheek did twitch a little, and a teeny teeny muscle in my lip was twitching too. This was enough that I thougt I ought to call my psychiatrist about, but today my thumb started twitching involuntarily, at like 1 PM- its almost 10 and its still doing it. I looked up TD online today and got really scared. This could be really happening to me. I need to get off of risperdal.

Oh risperdal, sweet risperdal, it has given me my life back. I am such a nearly normal person with risperdal. I have been looking at going back to school, been excited about reading a lot of books, and have started a relationship with a very handsome man. And now I am going to lose this medication that has helped me so much. I feel so sad to have to go back to feeling like I did.

I called my psychiatrist and waited for what felt like ages for him to call back. But he did and I told him my situation. He said I should come in and see him. I mentioned that I want to get off of risperdal no matter what, because I am too afraid of TD, mixed with all the other side effects. He sounded not supportive, but delighted. He made it sound like me wanting to get off of the risperdal was a great leap in my progress. I suppose if your psychiatrist thinks its "wonderful" that you want to stop taking a medication, then it must be an okay thing to do.

I am so scared. I don't want to go back to having a record player in my head saying the same things OVER and OVER, stupid things about the house not being clean enough, me not being married, me not having a degree, and people not liking me. I dont want to hear that anymore! I want to relax and read books! I want to go for leisurely walks. I want to spend time with friends without thinking about getting home and cleaning the house!

This year and a half has tought me what it feels like to be healthy. Maybe I can recognize when my thoughts arent healthy now, and learn to ignore them, I sure hope so. And there is a lot to be excited about, like losing weight, having better memory, and maybe being more emotional. Oh, and getting more of my sex drive back, without the milky boobs.

I assume I will want to write again soon.

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