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Tao of the Brassmonkey

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Cocopuffz17

All the best! 

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brassmonkey

Made it to Delhi, the airports agree deserted. Plane was empty. Found a flight home but having a real problem getting it booked, stupid internet. That's the project for this afternoon. 

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brassmonkey

Sweet talked the reception desk into letting us use a real computer instead of our phones and were able to close the deal.  We are on a flight tomorrow night going through Singapore and Tokyo then on to Los Angels. This will mean that we've gone around the world twice in the last 14 months. I hate that we're have had to cut the safari short,  but we will try again once things have settled down. 

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Glosmom

These are strange times for all of us.  Glad you found a route home!

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JackieDecides

so sorry about the trip but glad you will be able to get back home, hopefully soon. 

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brassmonkey

We are on the final leg of the trip home. How's this for technology I'm currently on an airplane at 38000 feet above the Pacific Ocean typing on my telephone. We'll be arriving in Los Angels in a few hours all the pictures I've been seeing show it to be quite deserted. Just hope or ride will be allowed to chime and pick us up. 

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brassmonkey

We are back in town. Each of the major airports we have been through has been deserted. At LAX we were off the plane, through immigration and customs and at the pick up point in 18 minutes. Every other time we have been through it has taken about two hours to do that. What was the most surprising was that there were no, zero, nada medical checks the entire way, we just walked right through. This country is so far behind the rest of the world it's silly. Any way we need to find some food supplies do laundry and catch up on jet lag.

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Cocopuffz17

Glad you are back. Yes, that is very odd.... especially if you want to prevent the spread of virus. 

 

Get some rest and stock up on TP :P 

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brassmonkey

Just wanted to record that I had another visual migraine this morning as I was waking up.

 

Being hard core introverts this self isolation isn't much different than normal life.  It's a pain that I can't just run out to get building supplies, but other that that it's life as usual. I have noticed that both of our sleep patterns have been very random since we go home, but we have no place to go and n set schedule so it doesn't really matter.

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Longroadhome
On 3/28/2020 at 5:48 PM, brassmonkey said:

Just wanted to record that I had another visual migraine this morning as I was waking up.

 

Being hard core introverts this self isolation isn't much different than normal life.  It's a pain that I can't just run out to get building supplies, but other that that it's life as usual. I have noticed that both of our sleep patterns have been very random since we go home, but we have no place to go and n set schedule so it doesn't really matter.

Hi @brassmonkey

Glad you got home safely. such a shame a well planned trip came to a halt with the Pandemic. Hope you can re visit another time when the world is well again. 
Also Hope the migraine has gone and you are better. 
 

can I ask you I am currently on 6.5mg Paxil  and doing the Brass monkey taper (naturally!!) . At what percentage occupancy are we looking at, at this level?

 

also I started in poop out and haven’t been without symptoms since Feb 2018 when I crashed from a too fast taper . I’ve held for months and now tapering despite not being symptom free. However so far so good the symptoms are manageable. Did you have symptoms all the way down or did it get better at some point? 
When talking about poop out you say it takes about 18 months to stabilise and another 18 months to start to see improvements why is this? 

you’re my hero by the way. 
 

thank you so much 

LRH 

 


 

 

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brassmonkey

Hi LRH-- we are already making plans for a return trip, probably next summer, it's going to be a while for things to settle down.  Then I think there will be an explosion in travel.

 

At a dose of 6.5mgai there is a SERT occupancy of about 70%.  This is why the lower doses have to be handled carefully, as any small change in dose can make a big change in occupancy and trip off symptoms.

 

I think those 18 month figures come from my personal taper.  I was in severe poopout for several years before I started tapering and it took a really long time to resolve. In poopout the bodies natural desire to be normal and the drugs need to control things are at odds. In poopout the body is starting to get the advantage over the drugs at all costs which sends the body into WD because the drugs aren't as effective. As a person tapers out of poopout it takes a while for the body to realize that it is in fact winning and then it has to play catch up to make the changes required to return to normal. That takes a fairly long time.  Once the body is caught up it still has to stabilize and make sense of the reductions in dose that continue to happen.  It's just a lot of things that need sorted out and adjusted one cell at a time. However, if there is a hold period thrown in the body starts to lose control and thinks the the drug is again winning and reverts to a WD situation.  Tapering out of poopout is a delicate balancing act and a lot of trust in ones body.

 

I actually has some sort of symptoms until I was six months post '0". But they were quite mild.  I really noticed that I was steadily improving when I got to about 3mgai. From then on there was a noticeable almost every month.  Once I broke below 1mgai I was quite functional and felt fairly normal.

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Longroadhome
1 hour ago, brassmonkey said:

Hi LRH-- we are already making plans for a return trip, probably next summer, it's going to be a while for things to settle down.  Then I think there will be an explosion in travel.

 

At a dose of 6.5mgai there is a SERT occupancy of about 70%.  This is why the lower doses have to be handled carefully, as any small change in dose can make a big change in occupancy and trip off symptoms.

 

I think those 18 month figures come from my personal taper.  I was in severe poopout for several years before I started tapering and it took a really long time to resolve. In poopout the bodies natural desire to be normal and the drugs need to control things are at odds. In poopout the body is starting to get the advantage over the drugs at all costs which sends the body into WD because the drugs aren't as effective. As a person tapers out of poopout it takes a while for the body to realize that it is in fact winning and then it has to play catch up to make the changes required to return to normal. That takes a fairly long time.  Once the body is caught up it still has to stabilize and make sense of the reductions in dose that continue to happen.  It's just a lot of things that need sorted out and adjusted one cell at a time. However, if there is a hold period thrown in the body starts to lose control and thinks the the drug is again winning and reverts to a WD situation.  Tapering out of poopout is a delicate balancing act and a lot of trust in ones body.

 

I actually has some sort of symptoms until I was six months post '0". But they were quite mild.  I really noticed that I was steadily improving when I got to about 3mgai. From then on there was a noticeable almost every month.  Once I broke below 1mgai I was quite functional and felt fairly normal.

Thank you @brassmonkey for the detailed reply . Much appreciated.  
 

I was also in quite severe poop out for a long time prior to tapering . During my hold I have had many symptoms that have been unbearable at times . But since  starting my taper again the symptoms have become manageable which I found very confusing as I thought they would be worse . However now it makes sense;   during hold my body thought the drug was winning hence the unbearable symptoms and now I’m tapering slowly it’s establishing some form of control. 
70% cert occupancy at such a low dose is staggering and certainly calls for a slow taper. 
 

glad to hear you are planning another trip and like you say Global travel will explode due to the suppression of the Pandemic.
 

take care  

LRH 

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brassmonkey

It all ended three years ago today.

 

After tapering for five and a half years I finally made the jump to "0", and haven't looked back. All those years are finally starting to fade in the distance. I remember going through it, but picking out specific details of how it felt on a day to day basis has been relegated to the past and are becoming hard to recall.  This is as it should be and is a major sign of healing. 

 

Past traumatic experiences fade in intensity, but their results still remain. We become the sum total of our past and change with each new challenge.  I have been through several "life changing experiences" over the years.  Each on in it's own rights was pretty awful to go through, but I learned and grew with each one. We never plan for such things to happen, but once we have weathered one, it makes the next much easier to bear. I had hoped that ADWD was the last one that I would have to experience, but life isn't like that. We all now have a new set of challenges to deal with as the world, once again, shakes beneath our feet and changes our lives.

 

That's the way life is. It will never be the way we imagine it or plan it, but rather ends up the way we have to live it. Dealing with the unexpected, making changes, changing attitudes, doing the best with what we've got, that's what life really is. If we can reach a point of contentment, that is the place to be. Everything else is just window dressing.  Having been through a lot of experiences and seen much of the world I have come to the realization that as long as I am with my wife Monica I am home, it doesn't mater the place or situation. Life has been rough at times and wonderful every day, and I must say that with all it has thrown at us we are content. And that is all one needs.

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Hanna72

@brassmonkey

Happy 3 years anniversary. 🙏
You are a true inspiration, as are so many here. 
 

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sunnysideup69

Happy three year anniversary! You give me hope that I can be off this stuff some day!

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Longroadhome

Fantastic 

Three years free of Paxil 

what a hard journey and what an achievement

well done. 
LRH  

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Frogie
17 hours ago, brassmonkey said:

It all ended three years ago today.

I’m so happy for you. Congratulations!

 

Take care,

 Frogie xx

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Cocopuffz17

Great work! Happy 3 years!!!

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mdwstrx

I'm so happy for us all ( especially you!) that you've had a successful

3 years.  :)

 

Many of us long time users were so scared when 'waking up' from

the debunked chemical imbalance theory only to find these drugs are so 

dangerous. You proved it's possible to get off.  More over,

you stayed around to help others through the journey.😇

 

Thank you! 💜

 

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JackieDecides

Happy Three Year Anniversary!! 

 

I'm so glad for you! and every time I read your posts I hope I remember to tell you what it means to me. I love what you have to say and admire how well you can say it. 

 

I can't tell you how much it helps to hear your words. 😍

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brassmonkey

I'm wanting to make a note of this, it seems that I've been mentioning visual migraines a lot lately and have even more to report.  Day before yesterday had one in the morning while working on the computer. Was doing fine then all of a sudden I could feel a wave of weakness/nausea sweep over me and then started seeing a small shimmering speck,  which grew and grew. Lasted just over half an hour, like usual and left me with a nice hangover for a few hours.  Then again this morning, I awoke from REM sleep to discover I was in the middle of an aura. The shimmering isn't as intense at night and I slept off the end of the "attack" and hangover. Interesting that I didn't "see" it while in the dream state, but as soon as I woke up, there it was.

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Rosetta

Three years!! Congrats.  
 

Your migraines don’t include pain, I hope.  What does the hangover involve, I wonder. Have you written about that?  
 

I’m very glad to see that you are home with your wife and safe.

 

Rosetta

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brassmonkey

Thank you Rosetta-- luckily there isn't any pain with the visual migraine, it use to happen many, many years ago, but now it's just the "hangover". The hangover is a generalized weak, sick feeling, no strength, washed out, slightly nauseous, not wanting to do anything.  It usually lass a few hours and I find it best to ignore it and get on with things, just a little slower than usual.

 

I see from your thread that you are doing much better, I so pleased for you. 

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brassmonkey

Several times in a persons life they will experience events that are so important they change the lives of everyone on the planet and move the future of the human race in an unplanned direction. That event can be subtle like the advent of the computer or cell phone.  It can be cataclysmic like World Wars I and II or it can be insidious, like our current crisis, creeping out to touch every corner of the globe and taking years to reveal it's full affect.  Each one of these events contributes a trauma of its own to the lives and psyche of every individual for generations to come. Like Pandora's Box, it's been opened, it's here to stay and we need to  learn to live with it. This won't be easy.

 

Stress levels for everyone due to the COVID-19 lock down are through the roof and are being displayed in a myriad of ways. One only has to watch the news to see the stressful affects it is having on the world. This stress is greatly amplified for people going through ADWD and most certainly can trigger waves of symptoms. Even for people whose tapers are going very well or who are well established into recovery, the stress can be a problem. I am seeing it manifest in increased/new insomnia complaints, fresh waves of depression, anxiety, anger, and despair. Life changes are never easy when we chose to make them, but having them thrust upon us, as many of us had ADWD thrust upon us, can be quite traumatic. However, ADWD has been a good training ground for surviving such psychic trauma.

 

Stress reduction, AAF and the other coping tools we have at out disposal, will help keep the new complaints under control. All our members need to reread the threads and put into practice the different techniques we have for self soothing.  If a person is having a stress reaction to the global situation it would be a good idea to start an extended hold period instead of continuing to taper. Once the stress reaction has passed and the person is stable, the taper can be resumed.  But greater attention will need to be paid to possible triggers and situations that can cause additional stress.  Personal plans for handling those situations need to be made and put in place and a proactive stance established.

 

I have commented elsewhere on this forum about how an individuals life changes while they live it.  We are going through one of those times of upheaval and need to adapt and change with them. The changes can be for the better or the worse, it is up to us as individuals to make the choices and take the actions required to make it for the better.

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Scotty

Dear brassmonkey - hello from Melbourne Australia. It's been almost 2 years since I quit Zoloft completely after a too-fast taper. I'm 71, and those years have been by far the most difficult of my life. I discovered your eloquent posts early on and have been following you ever since. Your knowledge, experience and wisdom have carried me through some very dark times. Recently I finally began to experience the stirrings of real recovery...but just on the cusp of coronavirus. Black joke all right. Symptoms have ramped up to more intense levels than ever...anxiety and its hateful cousin akathisia....spending most days on the couch just trying to survive. And most days I've thought that such extreme symptoms could not still be adwd...that I must  acknowledge that I am seriously ill. So your post about global and individual anxiety was very welcome, articulating the situation and giving hope. Thank you brassmonkey for everything you have done to help me and all of us in this community.. Health and peace to you.

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Scotty

Hello again brassmonkey...wonder if you could give me some help. Since I posted my recent message of thanks to you my wave symptoms have become even more intense...close to unbearable. I wake with extreme palpitations and burning skin...lie in bed all morning then struggle up to the couch. A pattern has developed which sees severe doom head develop at about 11. I drive around the neighbourhood to ease it...sometimes works, sometimes it lasts all day. I'm dizzy and agoraphobic when I try to shop. So hard just being alive.  I'm totally bewildered because these are by far the worst symptoms I've ever had...nearly 2 years after quitting ads. Yet 6 weeks ago I was doing quite well. I have frequent suicidal ideation but know I can't do that to the people who love me. I suppose it must be the stress of the pandemic doing this...but does it seem extreme to you? I'd be so thankful for any advice you could give to help me get through this. Best wishes.

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brassmonkey

Hi Scotty-- this passage is quite telling "these are by far the worst symptoms I've ever had...nearly 2 years after quitting ads. Yet 6 weeks ago I was doing quite well." It's sounding like a bad wave to me and is being compounded by all the additional stress the world is dumping on us.  The descriptions of the palpitations, troubled sleep, lack of energy and such all point to a wave. Riding it out is going to be the best thing, trying to reinstate any of the drug more than likely will cause more problems and isn't worth the risk. Reread all the threads on self soothing, AAF and the like and dust off what you've already learned. that should help quite a bit.

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Scotty

Hi brassmonkey. Your caution against reinstating was timely. I feel so dreadful that I was considering it for the first time since this horrible journey began.  I’m distraught to find myself actually worse than I was at the beginning -  I didn’t dream that was possible. So I began to think.... I’m a special case....recovery is impossible for me....nothing to lose so might as well try the medication again....

I’ll do my best to apply the self-soothing techniques and try to ride out this dumper as you advise.
Many thanks for your prompt reply - it was very reassuring to hear from you. I do hope that you are safe and well. 

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Longroadhome
3 hours ago, Scotty said:

Hi brassmonkey. Your caution against reinstating was timely. I feel so dreadful that I was considering it for the first time since this horrible journey began.  I’m distraught to find myself actually worse than I was at the beginning -  I didn’t dream that was possible. So I began to think.... I’m a special case....recovery is impossible for me....nothing to lose so might as well try the medication again....

I’ll do my best to apply the self-soothing techniques and try to ride out this dumper as you advise.
Many thanks for your prompt reply - it was very reassuring to hear from you. I do hope that you are safe and well. 

Hi Scotty 

i Remember being in contact with a member on this site who had been well and off meds for over two years when he was hit with a tsunami 

for some weeks he was saying it was the worst he’d ever felt And he was so

scared.  he’d just had a child with his wife and was worried because he thought he wouldn’t be able to cope . It did go on for some weeks but eventually it became less and less severe and eventually it ceased altogether. To say he was relieved was an understatement. 

you may find it on my thread near the beginning not sure though? 
Anyway keep  going You will get there. Stay strong positive and focused . 

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Scotty

Hi Longroadhome. Many thanks for taking the time to contact me. I wasn’t completely well when this horrible wave hit, but I was certainly enjoying the delights of a significant window. It was so frightening to be plunged into symptoms even worse than ever at this stage of the process. My health anxieties spun out of control and of course I was certain I was about to die. So it was very reassuring to hear that such severe waves can happen this far into withdrawal. Thanks again - much appreciated - I do hope you’re safe and progressing well. 

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xyz

Hi brassmonkey 

I have enjoyed reading your thoughtful and encouraging post.

I am going through a wave myself. And have symptoms like, anxiety, chest tightness,  internal buzzing, shaking, head pressure. After my rescue doses, I am going through some wave that come and goes. Yesterday was good. Today not so good.

How did you know that it will all go away and that it is only temporary during your withdrawal? 

 

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brassmonkey

We draw on the experiences of many thousands of people who are members here and in other groups for this type. With enough time their symptoms resolve and they recover. Although each person is unique in their experience there are some overall patterns that can be found.  The primary one is that if we let it, given time the body will sort things out, stabilize and recover. All the moderators here have/are going through it and have first hand experience that it does work.

 

The human body is an amazing thing.  It has had many thousands of years to develop and knows how to survive. If something goes wrong, it knows how to fix it. By taking these drugs we have thrown it out of balance and it wants nothing better than to rite itself. We have to believe and trust that our body knows better than our mind just what to do.  This is where the concept of "listening  to our bodies" comes from. If we listen it will tell us what to do.

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