Foul Balls and Grand Slams

Written in response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt:

Key Takeaway: Give your newer sisters and brothers in WordPress one piece of advice based on your experiences blogging.

————–or————–

If you’re a new blogger what’s one question you’d like to ask other bloggers?

I’m a blogging addict. At least once a week for the past year and a half I’ve pledged to quit, and yet here I am, plugging away. Pledging and plugging in an endless cycle of despair and euphoria.

If new bloggers are looking to me for advice then it’s a very sad state they inhabit. Nonetheless, here is my one piece of wisdom: 

Just write and publish something every single day. Don’t make apologies or excuses, just write.

You’ll hit a lot of easy out pop flies, but occasionally you’ll get a triple, and on that rarest of days, a grand slam home run. Those are the days that stoke the writing fire, and to continue mixing metaphors, feed the addiction. 

And because I don’t follow directions very well, here’s one more piece of advice: Read the work of a diverse mix of bloggers. Interact with them and savor their unique talents. Perhaps the best part of having begun writing has been the exposure to this great wealth of writers, poets, and photographers.

  
Peace, people!

Key Takeaway

Tunnel

i’ve been gone
for a long time
my mind
unhinged
tainted
exacerbated
by darkness and
troublesome doubt.

as the return trip
proves difficult
will i
prove
capable
sustainable
equal to the
test of wills?

light there awaits
punishment or peace
burning
bruising
controlling
welcome counter
to vapid refrain
ready or not, i come.

  

Praying for Eyebrowz Copyright 2015 by Leslie Noyes.

Cleansing

caffeine
booze
antidepressants
throw them all away
smash the bottles
discard the pills
try to find the you
that exists
without
any edges

I’ve been slowly weaning myself off of the antidepressant, Effexor. So far, so good. While I’ve had a few of the side effects that come with withdrawal (i.e. headaches, brain zaps, etc.) they’ve not yet been overwhelming. 

While I’m at it I’ve decided that I might as well stop drinking wine and coffee, too; although, I’m not quite ready to give up  my one “hoppy” beer in the evening. I think I’m doing pretty well. Let’s see what Studly has to say:

 

Studly’s frownie face.
 
Seriously, if you don’t hear from me in a few days it means I’ve gone off the deep end.

Peace, people!

Criminal Minds

I’ve shared glimpses of my mild addiction to the television drama, Criminal Minds, on a couple of occasions. 

By “mild” I mean that I’m ok if I go a day, even two without watching an episode. By “addiction” I mean that if I’m home and an episode of Criminal Minds is playing on any channel, regardless of the number of times I’ve already seen said episode, I will stop whatever I’m doing and watch it again.

And if I’m lucky enough to catch a re-airing of an episode I’ve never watched before, a feeling of euphoria sets in–it’s a high, I admit it. 

I wouldn’t call this a disabling addiction; I mean I function fairly well in my normal life except when CM is on the telly. The problem is, one can pretty much find an episode playing anytime, day or night. So, if the dishes stack up in the sink, or if the beds go unmade, Criminal Minds is most likely the culprit.

Now, if you’ll excuse me I have housework to do, but first I might need to check the TV listings.
Peace, people!

  

Effexor and Me: Not Qute a Love Story

A few days ago I shared a post called “Paranoia” about my crazy night of attempting  to ambush an imaginary intruder due to a temporary imbalance in my chemical makeup.

This imbalance, caused by an unintentional withdrawal from the antidepressant Effexor, led me to act in an erratic manner and resulted in a sleepless night. Once I had the drug back in my system all was right with the world. No harm, no foul.

Except that it’s not all right. This wasn’t my first experience with Effexor withdrawal. Several years ago I suffered a similar reaction after a bout with the stomach flu. For three days I kept throwing up my meds along with everything else in my system. 

The withdrawal was a terrifying experience. I had violent night terrors involving vivid decapitations and stabbings. In one savage dream I watched as Charlie Sheen had a leg brutally removed with a chain saw. Reality and imagination merged in my brain until I couldn’t discern one from the other. When I was awake, I experienced brain shivers, a sensation that’s difficult to describe but is vaguely similar to the feeling one gets when one has an inner ear infection. And the paranoia was off the charts. 

Studly was out of town on business, and had no idea how sick I was. I called him frantically insisting that I was near death. He cut his meetings short and rushed home to find me a mess. I had a migraine that had me cowering in our darkened closet and I was certain a tornado was imminent.

He rushed me to convenient care where I was fortunate to be able to see my former general practitioner. Thank goodness he was familiar with my medical history. He immediately asked how long it had been since I’d taken Effexor and got me started on an I.V. Within an hour I was back to being me.

The ironic part of this whole thing is that I don’t take Effexor for depression. My oncologist prescribed it to help ameliorate the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes and night sweats. Since I cannot take a hormone replacement, she believed Effexor would provide some relief. And it does.

But I worry about the future. What happens when I’m an elderly woman and cannot control my own medical care? What happens if at some time I do not have access to the drug and go bonkers? 

Recently I read a novel with a post-apocalyptic theme. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. In the novel a virulent flu has decimated the world’s population, and a group of survivors has sought refuge in an airline terminal. The group has enough food and other provisions, but one character who takes Effexor, soon runs out of her prescription and the group is unable to secure more. That character does not do well and ends up wandering off into the unknown. I think about her often.

Well, this was a cheery post. I highly recommend the book.

Peace, People.

Edit

The kitty is too cute to be a symbol of Effexor withdrawal.

Paranoia

Several nights ago before I went to bed I tied a rope around the knob of my closet door and attached the other end of the rope to the linen closet door. It actually wasn’t a rope so much as a cat toy that had a stick with a mouse dangling from it. Then, I placed a metal belt with a tinkly bell on it to the cat toy. 

In front of the closet door I placed a piano bench, a laundry hamper, and a large box of cat litter. Then I went to bed, but not to sleep.

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That night was the longest of my entire life. Studly was out of town, so I enjoyed the luxury of staying up a little later than his normally prescribed bedtime of 8:45. I realize that’s the bedtime of a ten-year-old, but I’ve learned to live with it. 

I watched my accumulated recordings of Criminal Minds until eleven, then began making preparations for bed. The cats needed bedtime treats and water. There were a few dishes I loaded into the dishwasher, then I made the rounds switching off lights and checking door locks. 

When I came to the front door I found it unlocked, and my heart stopped beating for the briefest of moments. No one goes in or out of that door. The only time it’s opened is when a package is left on the front porch. As far as I could remember, we’d received no deliveries in awhile.

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After locking the door, I went into full ninja mode. Studly and I have several beautiful walking sticks that his brother made. I grabbed the nearest one and began methodically searching room to room, under beds, behind furniture, every nook and cranny.

We have a large, open floor plan, so there aren’t a great many hiding places. Even so, it took me a half hour or so to make a complete search.

At this point I think it’s important that my readers know I take a prescribed anti-depressant–Effexor, and that for two consecutive nights I had forgotten to take my prescribed dosage. Forgotten isn’t exactly the correct word, you see I’d taken so much cold medicine last week that I’d get into bed and couldn’t remember if I’d taken the Effexor or not, so rather than take an extra dose, I’d erred on the side of caution and not taken what might be a second dose.

There are several awful consequences of Effexor withdrawal. One is extreme paranoia. Even after making a thorough search of the house I was certain someone was in there with me. But where?  Finally I decided there was no place anyone could be hiding, so I closed my bedroom door and began my nightly ablutions.

We have a large walk-in closet adjacent to our bathroom with a pull down door to access the attic. As I washed my face, my eyes were drawn to the rope attached to that attic door. I walk underneath that door every day without noticing it, but in my Effexor withdrawal paranoia I instantly knew that someone lurked above me, just waiting for the lights to go out and for me to fall asleep.

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And that’s why I had tied a cat toy to the door knob of my closet door. Now, my readers are not stupid people and have probably foreseen a problem related to hanging a cat toy on a door knob in a household of cats. Yes, the cats wanted to play with it, and did so throughout the night. 

Just as I’d doze off, a ding-a-ling would sound. I’d jump up, heart racing, walking stick in one hand, a can of hairspray in the other, looking to ambush whoever had dared hide in my attic.

I watched every hour click into existence on Studly’s digital clock. As my Effexor kicked in my paranoia slowly faded, but I still had some residual withdrawal effects, the worst one being brain shivers, so any time I turned my head I thought I caught a movement in my peripheral vision.

That’s why I put the piano bench, the clothes hamper, and the large box of cat litter in front of the closet door. If my early warning system didn’t work, then maybe they’d buy me some time.

Everything made sense in the middle of a long sleepless night.

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Now some would say, “Girl, get yourself a gun.” To which I’d reply, “Did you actually READ this post?” Who in their right mind would put a gun in the hands of a crazy woman?

Peace, People.

Candy Crush Withdrawal

Twelve step programs
Always say, first one must
Admit one has a problem.
I have a problem.

Bidding adieu to the
Crush Sisters:
Candy and Soda
Piece of cake.

Too many hours spent
Bringing fruit all the
Way to the bottom
Or eliminating bombs.

Chocolate and bears.
Candy of all colors.
Deceptively innocent
Addictive as hell.

Then, the tremors
Began. My fingers
Beat staccato trying
To find bears.

Today I searched in
Vain for the icons
Deleted two days past.
Lord, give me strength.

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Blogging Junkie

Psssst. Hey, you, yea you.
You got any good ideas?
C’mon man, I just need one.
That’s all I need.
Just a little hit and then I’ll give it up for good.

Oh?
I told you that yesterday?
My bad.
But, I picked up two more followers, man,
and they’re gonna want the good stuff.

I’m jonesin’ dude.
Yeah, I can stop writing anytime I want,
but you know, this ain’t the right time.
I’ll just write one more post.
I promise.

What’s that?
I should write about wine?
No dude.
I already did that like three times already.
Maybe I should find a new supplier.
You keep peddling that same old sh*t.

Pssssst. Hey you.

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