I’ve been on medication for my OCD ever since I could define the term “OCD”. This has been almost 10 years–10 years of one prescription after another. Unfortunately, in the past, my regimen was one doctor after another. One therapist after another. One psychologist after another.
Here I am, at age 24, doing what I love: writing. Writing my story, about my long, hard fight with a mental illness that is real and true.
I just thought that I’d go into a little bit of detail about what my journey with OCD on so many heavy medications is like, and post more in the future about my journey writing my first book–a memoir about my experience with a traumatizing mental illness.
I’ve always found comfort in knowing I take medication for my OCD.
I find comfort in that because knowing that I’m on medication means that I have an illness and that my intrusive thoughts and urges are NOT my fault.
I find comfort in knowing that I take medications because I expect the medications to “fix” my intrusive thoughts and keep them away.
The COLD, HARD TRUTH about psychiatric medications is that they help, yes, but they are not a fix-all or end-all of OCD. Or any other mental illness. The medications just simply take the “edge off” or the “sting” of those horrible thoughts, and help ease the pain of the “fiery darts” that are thrown into the mind of the sufferer.
One of the medications I’m on I can’t sleep without. I’m dependent on a pill in order to sleep through the night. It feels awful knowing I can’t sleep on my own.
I have been on so much medication that I am now on more medication than ever before. I’ve been told that my eyes are dilated because of how many meds I’m on. That wasn’t easy to swallow. Right now, my main problem is the side effects of the combination of medication I am on. Ready to hear the side effect? It may not make any sense to you, but it’s scary to deal with and honestly makes no sense to me either.
The side effect that completely wears me down and changes the pattern of my day is when my eyes “go batty”, as I call it. My eyeballs, inside my skull, look up and down uncontrollably. I’ll look up at the sky and my eyes remain looking at the sky until they force themselves down to take a break, then UP again at the sky. This makes it hard to see and even hard to drive my car. Up and down, up and down. Its usual cause is when I don’t eat enough and/or work out too hard at the gym. I have to find a way to eat enough in the mornings before I go to the gym or else, batty eyes are coming. It’s so scary and I become LIVID when it happens. It takes 2 Ativan, laying down, and food to get it to go away. It’s awful, as you can probably assume.
Yet, in the midst of all of that, I find peace knowing that one day I will be completely healed, in the arms of my Savior. Right now, all I can do is walk about my day to day life. I see my amazing psychiatrist on January 25, 2017, and I’m anticipating the discussion I’m going to have with him about potentially decreasing the dosages of my medications. I’m definitely going to discuss the issue of my eyes. I shouldn’t have to deal with that; it’s a nuisance and not my friend.
OCD hasn’t been my friend; it’s been my decade-long enemy.
I hope you gained some understanding about what being on really heavy psychiatric medication is like. I know it’s hard to relate if you don’t have OCD or are not on medications for even physical illnesses, but if you are on medications for something, just know that you are not alone and that there is hope in the name of Jesus for your healing. He paid for our healing on the Cross.
Holli Anne Perkins