Wednesday, August 24, 2011

That Song I Mentioned Once

I found it! It's by Third Eye Blind, called "Narcolepsy".

I'm on a train, but there's no one at the helm
And there's a demon in my brain
Who starts to overwhelm whelm whelm whelm whelm
And there it goes, my last chance for peace
You lay me down, but I get no release
And I say I, I try to keep awake
I try to swim beneath
I try to keep awake
But I, I can feel this narcolepsy slide
Into another nightmare
And there's a demon in my head who starts to play
A nightmare tape loop of what went wrong yesterday
And I hold my breath till it's more than I can take
And I close my eyes and dream that I'm awake
I try to keep awake
I try to keep awake
I try to keep awake
But I, I can feel this narcolepsy slide
Into another nightmare
I read dead Russian authors volumes at a time
I write everything down except what's on my mind
Cause my greatest fear is that sucking sound
And then I know that I'll never get back out
And there's a bone in my hand that connects to a drink
In a crowded room where the glasses clink
And I'll buy you a beer and we'll drink it deep
Because that keeps me from falling asleep I said
How'd you like to be alone and drowning
How'd you like to be alone and drowning
How'd you like to be alone and drowning
How'd you like to be alone and drowning
Still I find this narcolepsy slide slide
Into another nightmare
Keep awake, keep awake, keep awake
And I can feel this narcolepsy slide

Link to video:

I really like what she did with this video. Totally fits what happens to me a lot. :D

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

On Remeron for a Reason

I don't think I've written a whole lot about Remeron (my anti-depressant) on here. The thing goes somewhat unappreciated, maybe because there isn't anything to complain about. It doesn't give me any side effects so I mostly stopped noticing it was there. Or, maybe, my memory is simply bad enough that I've forgotten I'm on any meds anymore. But every time I manage to run out of it, I realize just how much help it is.

A neurologist several years ago put me on it because I was both depressed (had been for years) and needed extra help getting to sleep (as you all understand). I tried the generic first and it worked awesome. I felt like a new person. I was suddenly able to have hope for the future again and became usefully optimistic. I figured out how to smile. But then the side effects started- my muscles started to hurt. At first I thought I'd just pulled something, until I noticed it was happening to a bunch of muscles and would rotate around and change which ones it affected for no apparent reason. I tried staying on it but by the end of a month I was in constant pain. I felt so good otherwise that my doctor put me on the brand name instead and, just like we were hoping, it worked- no muscle pain, but all the good effects were still there.

When I got off of Xyrem a year ago, I stayed on Remeron, and I was glad I did. I didn't know how glad until the first time I ran out. I switched from the mail order system to picking it up from pharmacies because we kept moving, and with my memory you can imagine what would happen literally every month. I would get down to five tablets and start thinking I should refill it. I'd remember every night since I take it before bed, but forget by the morning. I wouldn't write myself a note until I was down to two, then finally make it to a pharmacy in the middle of nowhere, where they would have the generic or nothing at all and have to order it, and this would always happen to fall on a Friday somehow, so then I would have to wait until Monday and not take it for one or two nights.

The first time this happened, I was expecting to feel depressed. Instead, sleeping just got ten times harder. My dreams got more persistent, intense and disturbing. I did notice a drop in my mood but I was more concerned about the lack of sleep. On a good day I'm petty discombobulated, but without Remeron I get even more out of it and confused.

You would think, with such a big difference, I would learn after the first few times, but no. I keep running out. I think I've remembered twice out of the last ten or so times. I finally (now that we're settled again) switched it back to mail order, three months at a time, so it will no longer be up to my extremely efficient brain. But not in time to avoid it happening again this past weekend, of course. The first night I didn't have any, I just stayed up. My husband and I drank lots of caffeine, ate tons of cookies (Uqi's chocolate chip!!) and watched Stargate Atlantis. Between that and playing cards we managed to stay awake until around 2AM. My ploy sort of worked that night. I got up around 8 or 9 as usual so that I mostly skipped the dreaming phase that gets so much worse without Remeron.

I was feeling pretty smug (though more sleep deprived than usual) when I went to pick up my Remeron yesterday, until they told me that it hadn't come in and they couldn't get it until today. Feeling exasperated with myself for getting in this situation to begin with, I didn't try anything fancy last night, just got in bed and really wished that I hadn't.

I was looking at star charts like in Stargate SG-1 (which we started rewatching yesterday) when somebody came in with some fried chicken in a plastic bag and told me I was supposed to deliver it to this Buddhist monk. Apparently she lived at the top of this really steep hill even though we were supposedly in my extremely flat hometown. Actually it was more like a small mountain, with these crazy round boulders making it up. So I'm really hungry, climbing this weird mountain, sort of light-headed and trying to determine if a) the chicken is gluten-free and b) if it's okay to eat somebody else's lunch. I poke at the chicken and it seems GF so I try a piece. It's not tasty but it isn't poisonous either, so I keep eating it. I get up to this temple on this mountain and deliver the chicken and this monk lady is asking me all these really philosophical questions about stuff. I'm mostly just confused but sort of happy because the stuff she's talking about is interesting, but in the course of that I forget to deliver the chicken and just keep eating it. Then she sends me on my way and I'm wandering around my aunt's house seeing everything she's recently remodeled. Then a bunch of my cousins are there and we're taking my great aunt to see a newly flooded area of the city. It was clearly a highway before, but now the ocean is there, and a couple of highway bridges are acting like piers. We walk out on them, talking, and I'm telling them the whole city is going to be flooded soon.

So, this dream's not too bad, you're probably thinking. Well, then I feel pain in my mouth on the inside of my bottom lip. I get all annoyed thinking it's probably just something I accidentally bit as I was eating all the GF fried chicken. It's bleeding a lot and the blood tastes metallic like blood does. I start trying to find somewhere to spit it out because it tastes disgusting. It starts welling up more and more and gets all over my hands as I try to hold it inside my mouth. I find a dirty sink in an art class and spit the blood out into it, but it keeps coming and the texture turns really globby and clotted. The texture disgusts me even more and I just keep spitting it out, hoping it will stop. It tastes horrible and I feel nauseous.

It slows down a little, thankfully, but it tastes worse and worse, almost like rotting. In the sink, blood is mixed with old acrylic paint that many students have washed off of brushes. It makes a horrible, bloodstained rainbow.

Needless to say, I got up right away and went for the caffeine. I'm never under-appreciating my antidepressant again (until, you know, I forget about this whole thing in the next five minutes).

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Confusing the Heck Out of Normal People

Well, our wedding went great, lots of people showed up and it was generally awesome. (Apparently the disasters stayed in the planning and once we got to Omaha, it was all fine.) Then, for our honeymoon we drove down to visit my hometown and then back up, slowly. All in all, it was a good break from real life, except for all the people thinking my husband is my wife because we hadn't told them about the whole trans thing yet. But we survived and even had a good time, talking or just being for all those hours of driving.

Some time on the last day, as we were heading up Illinois for five hours, we started tallying up everything we have to change our names on. The list ended up somewhat overwhelming. I had changed my last name and J had changed his first and middle via the marriage, and between us, all sorts of IDs, insurance things, and bank accounts were now outdated. So, as soon as we got home and minorly settled (as in, boxes piled everywhere in the downstairs of my in-laws' house instead of in the car and basement) we set out to start the process.

Our first stop was the DMV to update J's drivers' license and get me a non-driver ID to replace mine. The first person we managed to confuse was the information desk guy. We explained how we had changed our names due to marriage and needed new licenses in this state since we had moved. He was like, sure, and then we handed him our shiny marriage certificate. He blinked at it multiple times to make sure he was reading it right. Then he looked at J and back down at the proof that my husband has changed his name from a very feminine name to a male name. He asked us again just to make sure, then shrugged it off and got it set up.

Then desk guy explained that I need proof of residency in the state to get my new license, and I asked if it was the same for a non-driver ID. He said it was and then said quickly, "...but then you won't be able to drive!" And I was like, "yeah." And he was like, "You know you can't keep the license from the previous state if you do that, and you'll give up the right to drive." He went from skeptical to really confused when I said lightly, "yeah, I know." I didn't explain to him that I hadn't driven in two years and if I did, that it would be really dangerous and not worth the energy required anyhow. I mean, I look perfectly normal and I'm only 25.

So with that desk guy, we started our official Body Count, aka how many government officials we had confused so far: Me: 1, J: 1. We decided to keep score because really, how is it not hilarious? Plus, we're interested in who can raise the most eyebrows: the 25-year-old disabled girl or the guy getting a sex change. Who will win??

Next it was getting J's new photo, which I sadly missed because I was in the bathroom, but apparently it was really funny. The guy doing the photos for people was this really outgoing, chatty fellow who looked like somebody's friendly grandfather. Apparently he was super awkward trying to figure out how to address J, who hasn't yet started testosterone (next week!) and has a feminine-looking face, but dresses, talks and acts very male. So I missed that, and didn't get a shot at confusing that guy since I have to wait on my ID until I bring in proof of my address. That made the Body Count J: 2.

We sat and waited until we got called to finish the process, which was done by a strict-sounding and annoyed woman who decided to be suspicious at first rather than confused. She triple-checked that J wanted his whole name changed and was pretty short with us, but it was most likely just the long line. Then we were just waiting on it to get printed out, now with the score as J: 3, Me: 1. Finally, photo dude waves us over to avoid calling out J's new name which obviously weirds him out, lol. Sniggering, we left.

Our other stop of the day was the closest social security office. This time, we only spoke to one person who did both of ours. He was younger than the DMV people, or maybe just less easily ruffled, because when he saw J's old and new names, he only paused for slightly longer than normal in between sentences. We decided that didn't count, though, because it didn't even make him awkward. I got my second score of the day, however, when he asked me for my social security number and it took me ten minutes of close-eyed concentration to come up with this number I know very well and use pretty often. It probably didn't help that I was swaying off balance and speaking really vaguely since I had forgotten to bring a snack and was looking and feeling light-headed. He looked really worried about me and surprised, even after I came up with the number and managed to actually remember my mom's maiden name, etc, without missing a beat. So after those two stops, the score stands as Me: 2, J: 3. I'm optimistic, though, since I haven't gotten a chance at two of the three DMV counter people yet, that I may win. It's not every day a perfectly ordinary-looking young person trades in their right to drive, after all. But who knows. The sex change may win in the end. XD