Apologies in advance for the length of the share, but I got a lot tonight.
"There was once a dream that was us. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish… "
Once a week for the past three weeks, I have missed my nightly meds (unintentionally) and gone through a sleepless night. My work keeps me late and I sometimes don’t get home til 3 in the morning. I’ll toss and turn til about 7 and then my day starts. I have breakfast (which I normally never am awake to do), check my e-mail, and I hit the gym around 8:30. I have a great workout (usually playing basketball) and I leave the gym hungry for a lunch. I get something healthy with big portions to last me through dinner. I get home, eat, shower, then take care of any errands or chores I need to do. Afterwards, I will find time to write my blog (cbdpush.com (shameless plug)), meditate for ten minutes, and finish up any additional work that needs doing. I’ll have dinner (lunch leftovers) and I will get ready for work. At work, I have amazing conversations with total strangers which is what I get paid to do. Normally, I am a complete zombie, going through the motions of the job without any soul or purpose. I form these great connections that leave me either laughing, smiling, or just knowing I’m doing my job the right way.
A normal day has me waking up three hours past lunchtime, dragging my feet around the house, eating at irregular times, thinking of going back to bed and setting my alarm for thirty minutes before my work shift is to start. When I get to work, I am lifeless, moving around aimlessly, having inane conversations without any sort of traction or connection to the person I am talking to. I can’t explain how night and day these medless, sleepless nights are compared to the typical “I have schizophrenia so I take medication” days. Life begins to have purpose, you feel a connection with others: there is no prescription or illicit drug that can match the overwhelming sense of joy, comfort, and relief you feel when the other person notices you and appreciates the bond of conversation, however fleeting it may be.
How do I account for all this? I have no idea, but this is a life without schizophrenia. It is like the holy grail and I know that I can only get a glimpse of it. When I reach for it, it is merely an illusion; medication is the cornerstone of my sanity and enough medless/ sleepless nights will do me more harm than good. As a person with schizoaffective disorder, I am aware of the pitfalls; a sleepless night can affect the mood to manifest a bipolar (manic) episode, but I tell you, it is damn close to living.