Tuesday, December 6th marked the last day of taking Effexor ER and the beginning of the withdrawal from H-E-L-L. What I thought would be a daily bout of wicked nausea, brain zaps, and beyond Linda Blair projectile vomiting coupled with dizziness for at least 6 months turned out to last 17 days. It was a long 17-days my friend and one I don’t recommend unless you truly want to battle with the deepest of deamons.
My roommate was fairly warned on the 6th of December knowing full well this was the end of my drug taking days as I said to him, “I’m amazed at how well I’m handling this”, not even realizing what was in store for me for the next two weeks. He dealt with this withdrawal as best as he knew how. But the others who are close to me were in store for much more.
My business partner and best friend, Vicki Berry was one of these people who was an integral part of my recovery and as one would deem ‘coming back to normalcy’. I must give thanks and deserved kudos to those people who were in the mix of my withdrawal and recovery effort.
I was on Effexor XR for almost 7 years and what I read about this drug was not complementary to my practices, on a daily basis, of health and wellness. As a USAT Coach and NASM CPT I’m supposed to be the epitome of health and wellness and as I’ve come to realize the Effexor XR was the antithesis of my daily practices.
I was amazed at my willingness to allow a drug to impact my life with such force that it contributed to my daily depression, loneliness, and mood swings which is counterintuitive of my daily practice with my athletes and personal training clients; not a very good role-model if I do say so myself.
It’s amazing what you’ll do in your weakest mental moments. When you don’t believe in yourself, when you doubt everything you stand for, and everything you’ve become. When you don’t think you can do it, when you embody the fragility and vulnerability our society deems as weakness.
In my weakest of moments which were quite often as I was surrounded by consistent debilitating behavior I decided I needed to lower myself to the level of becoming an addict. No, I didn’t think of it like that at the time, yet I realize what my decision created for me almost 7 years later.
Withdrawing from a drug that is supposedly non-addictive in composition has been quite a testament to my mental and physical capacity.
What I’ve found interesting is the commonality between the pharmacists, the doctors and Pfizer, the drug company responsible for this drug. Across the board these experts recommend and advise weaning yourself off this debilitating drug. So my question is how is a drug classified as non-addictive when you have to wean yourself off the drug?
What classifies non-addiction in this day and age?
Let’s call a Spade a Spade
Here’s my take, and it may sound like I’m being a bit paranoid here, but let’s call a spade a spade:
The drug companies are the biggest lobbyist on Capitol Hill and they have made it impossible for any and all alternative medicine to be introduced to North America because if it weren’t for the drug companies the government wouldn’t be able to brain wash most of those people who can’t handle their lives on a daily basis.
The drugs pushed on the television, the billboards, the magazines, the internet, and a multitude of other means by which they reach all of us at our weakest moments are powerful and because we are a lazy society, we want our fix right now; we want immediate gratification. The drugs provide this to us within minutes of taking them.
I needed a quick fix, a drug-induced dogma, if you will, and Effexor XR was there to reach out to me to let me know it would be able to alter my mental state of being while at my weakest moments. It was my savior and as I found out, it was the biggest mistake I ever made with my health.
When you’re on drugs you see things through a different lens. The lens of the drug, not your lens. Take that into consideration when you’re on any drugs. Pain killers, muscle relaxers, aspirin, anti-inflammatories, and the like. Your lens is not yours, it’s now the drug’s lens and you have no control over what and how you view the world because it is completely colored by the drug.
I know what this drug does because I know what I felt each and every day of having to withdrawal from not taking it. I know what I went through on a daily basis, how I was incapacitated and what my body went through for 17 days while I had the brain zaps, the consistent nausea, the dizziness beyond anything I’d ever experienced, the dry mouth, and on goes the list.
What I wondered the entire time as I withdrew was how they could classify this as a non-addictive drug.
Honestly, I’m really fortunate to have the health and wellness I do because quite honestly I couldn’t imagine what I would have gone through if I’d been a heavy drinker, smoker or otherwise really out of shape. I’m grateful I have the fortitude to know my body and have the common sense to keep my strength and health at the forefront of my every day activities.
Today is December 31st 2011 and I feel awesome. No lie. I really feel great and I can’t believe how easy it is for me to be transparent with myself and others. I’ve noticed a complete difference in my mood, my overall well-being and my energy levels.
So much for drugs that are supposed to help me cope; as I have been testimonial to, I believe I’m capable of coping very well on my own without the aid of drugs.
A drug that was supposed to enable me to ‘cope’ with my life debilitated me to the point of having nightmares on a regular basis, being laxidcazical, having extreme loneliness, depression and the like. An anti-depressant supposed to ‘help’ only hindered and today as I write this, on New Year’s Eve 2011 I am not only proud of my ability to handle the 17 days of complete hell to overcome such an incredible withdrawal for someone who’s never taken or been addicted to drugs in her life.
I’ve overcome many obstacles and I believe truly I am here on this planet to inspire others to take that step, to let it go, and trust yourself to the best of your capabilities to handle your life without the aid of a mood enhancing drug or a life altering drug or a drug that incapacitates you so that you start doubting everything you do in your life.
With this I say to you and everyone who completely doubts their ability to achieve; you cannot listen to the doubts, the negativity, the less than commentary.
Happy New Year’s Nicole Jolie and the many others who’ve overcome and continue to mark their excellence daily.
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