Day 44 – Fisher Wallace CES Report.

I was still pretty beat up from the 22nd and when that occurs I begin to ruminate…and so I ruminated into the 23rd. Eventually I’d watch some TV and take clonazepam…I finally fell asleep at 4 am.

The morning started off fairly well, around 10 am I received a call from my psychiatrist’s office. I had an appointment for that evening but could I come in this morning and I’d be seeing a different psychiatrist. What happened to my psychiatrist? He was no longer with them, the end.

I saw the psychiatrist around 11:15 am. My former psychiatrist was Russian (with a notable accent); this psychiatrist was Indian (with a minor accent). I was surprised. The office I go to traditionally has been almost entirely Russian and they oftentimes spoke Russian to one another…in fact, much of the clientele was Russian as well. I always found it funny, figuring I must stick out like a sore thumb. But over time, I suppose the clientele has diversified – though staff is still a Russian majority.

Anyways, my new psychiatrist seemed pleasant and knowledgeable enough. But then he said that he does not prescribe Adderall. Now, that is well and good, but not (imho) if you have been prescribed Adderall for the last five or six years and only get a call that morning informing you that you’ll be seeing a new psychiatrist.

Adderall has worked well for me (at a relatively low dosage) and I’m hesitant to be moved to something else, especially at this unstable juncture in my life. But I decided to stick with it – if I find that my ADD gets a lot worse down the road, I’ll go to another psychiatrist who will prescribe Adderall.1Adderall is abused frequently by students and by various types of geeks. It is utilized to increase performance in tasks and to allow for extended study/programming/etc. sessions. As I understand it, it is not easily utilized for “getting high” since the formulation is such that if snorted the component portions are very sharp and will rip your nose apart.

So, the new psychiatrist took me off Adderall, kept my Fluoxetine (Prozac) at 60 mg, and tripled my Bupropion dosage (Wellbutrin) from 100 mg to 300 mg. I might have put up stiffer resistance, but I knew that the Bupropion had a significant positive effect on me (and I only began taking it perhaps 1 year ago) AND perhaps more importantly, I knew that Bupropion is available as a generic (thus inexpensive) whereas Adderall had been costing me $150/mo. (No, I do not currently have medical insurance. B/c of preexisting conditions my monthly insurance costs would be around $650/mo.)2I can buy all my medications for around $200 (now significantly less w/out Adderall) and pay the $75 co-pay to see the psychiatrist out of pocket (I know, they are pretty inexpensive for a specialist right?) and still spend less than half of what health insurance would cost me…just pray I don’t have any major medical issues…

I won’t be starting on the changed dosages for a little bit yet b/c I still have some of the current dosages…so we’ll see what happens eventually…but I’m optimistic that Bupropion will successfully replace the Adderall3Which is also a restricted drug, meaning you have to go see the psychiatrist for a new script all the time…as opposed to Bupropion and Fluoxetine which can be renewed via phone, etc. by the doctor and maybe even help stabilize my mood more4that was the largest effect I found from taking Bupropion initially…It seemed to help me not take as big of dives into depression…but all the benefits of my medications became significantly less once the current crisis beset me.

The cats had run out of food, so I stopped by ShopRite and picked up some more food for them. Then I changed their litter boxes. I’ve been giving them some natural goop in their food that is supposed to calm their stomachs down and make the diarrhea go away – I think it may be working…We’ll see how things continue to go over the next few days5But that would eliminate one of my largest frustrations with the cats right now (I really hate bad smells – no, I don’t mean like all people do, I mean I REALLY hate bad smells…I think it is an OCD thing).

Josh Hostetter gave me a call and demonstrated his counseling listening skills and was a real encouragement to me.

In the afternoon I was able to meet up with Tom Allen and he was a real encouragement to me regarding my continuing ministry at CCC. I don’t have the opportunity to meet with Tom frequently, but every time I do it is a real blessing and encouragement.

I was buoyed by these conversations and so my mood continued to be positive as the afternoon passed. In the evening I made some forward progress with CCC’s website – I’ve moved it to a new (faster) server. Believe it or not, a decent number of folks find CCC via the website…

Then it was time for IT Consulting. I’d spend over 3 hours working for a client…there is still more to do, but made a lot of progress and had no significant hangups. Things were clicking along.

I used the CES again in the evening – still feeling fairly well. I watched some TV, read news stories on Feedly, read up on attachment theory, and so on…then it was midnight and the 24th began (though I didn’t go to sleep).

I’ll write about the 24th tomorrow, but for now, I’ll just note that it was another positive day. With both of these days I don’t mean, “boy, I’m doing great, I’m happy as a clam” – but I do mean “hey, I’m not in the pits of despair and I can get stuff done…”

I hope (cross my fingers AND pray) that this is the start of a new stable for me. I would like that very much. Amen.

Footnotes

1 Adderall is abused frequently by students and by various types of geeks. It is utilized to increase performance in tasks and to allow for extended study/programming/etc. sessions. As I understand it, it is not easily utilized for “getting high” since the formulation is such that if snorted the component portions are very sharp and will rip your nose apart.
2 I can buy all my medications for around $200 (now significantly less w/out Adderall) and pay the $75 co-pay to see the psychiatrist out of pocket (I know, they are pretty inexpensive for a specialist right?) and still spend less than half of what health insurance would cost me…just pray I don’t have any major medical issues…
3 Which is also a restricted drug, meaning you have to go see the psychiatrist for a new script all the time…as opposed to Bupropion and Fluoxetine which can be renewed via phone, etc. by the doctor
4 that was the largest effect I found from taking Bupropion initially…It seemed to help me not take as big of dives into depression…but all the benefits of my medications became significantly less once the current crisis beset me
5 But that would eliminate one of my largest frustrations with the cats right now (I really hate bad smells – no, I don’t mean like all people do, I mean I REALLY hate bad smells…I think it is an OCD thing).

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