For the past couple of months I’ve been fighting with myself over my use of medications. I’m in constant denial of the fact that they help me because I feel that one day I could quite possibly die from one of the many side effects that’s given to me on a 7 page print out every time I pick them up from pharmacy.
Being a veteran from the Iraq war, I struggle every single night from nightmares and cold-sweats.
I’ve been on at least 13-18 different medications just to get something that helps with my sleep. The other dozens I’ve been on are to treat anxiety and depression. In total I take 5 pills a night and 2 during the day. I’ve been doing this since getting back from Iraq in 2005.
So twelve years I’ve been off and on medications with little success. Before I had Tank suicide was always a thought in my mind, I was downing medications and still having problems with sleep.There were days that I thought I had died on the front lines; that time when mortars were landing on the roof above our heads and I blacked out. My mind was so messed up I believed I was in some sort of purgatory.
After accepting the fact that I needed help and the medications, I’ve been able to focus better and accept the fact that I’ll always be hunted by the war of my past, but I don’t have to let it get in the way of my goals and values.
I wouldn’t be able to sleep without medication, trust me I’ve tried everything from herbs to diets and nothing works. Same as the anxiety; Tank helped with it a little, but I wouldn’t be calm in public without medication. The only way I’m able to enjoy going to live sports like the Twins and the Timberwolves is if I take Clonazapam.
So if I will have to take medications my whole life, should I expect to die from some sort of side effect? I believe God will take me when it’s my time, but I also know that he respects our choices so I don’t want to shorten my life on by own accord.
The only thing I do know is I’m at the happiest point in my life than I have ever been. Since I started opening up more with my doctors, they were able to get me on meds to keep me stable, but I still have my days. I know that everyone who has to be on medications the rest of their lives feel the same way as I do.
So I wonder, is there going to be a point that I won’t need medications?
I have to remember to ask my doctors. I think this is a valid question for everyone. The pharmaceutical companies creates thousands of drugs to make us feel as though we need to be dependent on them so they can milk insurance and our pockets.
We should be champions and make it a priority to see how these drugs affect our bodies before taking them without question.