Today is one of those days that makes me realise how dependent my life has become on chemicals that keep my moods stable. I messed up my medication a few days ago because I thought I had another strip of tablets but it turns out I did not, so when I called up to make a repeat prescription I had actually 1 day of tablets left, when it takes two days to get a prescription. I have therefore been rationing my medication to make sure I don’t have a day when I totally go without.
As it stands, I now know that when I half the level of my meds, they do not work. I must be right at the minimum level for functioning, or something because today I did not get out of bed on time; I ate junk food because I felt down; and I have been very hard-pressed to get anything done at all. The fact that All over the House and The Life of Nob T. Mouse updated today (Nob Mouse updated at 11pm, which is 23 hours late) is a testament to the fact that I am now at least aware that I have a problem and that helps me to try to work through it.
I have not yet recorded today’s videos (there will be two: one on Nobmouse, and the other on ZJKR) because it is now so late at night that if I were to start talking I would wake Jennifer up, and that’s not fair on her. I will therefore link the videos to the bottom of this blog post once she gets up for work and I can talk loud enough for a decent recording without worrying about disturbing her. The videos will be what I do just before I go to bed, so don’t expect me to be at the peak of awakeness.
Yes, that’s right – I’m going to bed when my wife wakes up. That’s another side effect of lowering my meds. When I’m not on the right level of chemicals, I revert to my natural sleep cycle, which I worked out is somewhere on the West Coast of America. We have two clocks on the landing in our house, one set to UK time and the other set to Zoë Time. The latter lines up rather well with the time my iPhone tells me San Francisco is currently on. Apparently my body thinks I’m in America. I assume you I am not. I am still here, in the good old Land of the Teapot.
My psychiatrist tells me that exercise helps to deal with mood problems and it’s true. My mother also tells me this, along with “get out in the sunshine sometimes”. It’s advice I really should take more notice of. You know all those videos where I appear to have a bright light shining right on me, so I’m as white as a sheet? Those aren’t spotlights, that’s just me filming with the curtains in my office open; I really am that pale. It’s a side effect of being a goth when I was younger. Now I don’t tan properly, I just burn and as a result I avoid sunlight when I can.
Sunlight is a major influence on moods in human beings. Because I knew I was feeling down, I went out for a walk earlier. I need the exercise because I’m just over 14 stone in weight right now and my ideal weight is 12 stone. I put on a lot of weight thanks to the lithium and sodium I was prescribed in January through to March, after I was hospitalised. I’m now trying to get that weight off, so more exercise is a must. Anyway, I went out for a walk because I’m determined to not let this damn illness stop me getting things done in life. It boosted my mood enough to get the comics finished, eventually, and to script today’s Nobmouse video (the one for ZJKR will be a vlog entry and therefore it will be unscripted).
It’s weird how light alters moods, which are essentially brain chemistry, but at least I know it works. It does make me wonder how I would be able to cope if I ended up fully on a night cycle all the time. Given that I tried that during my hypermanic phase last year, I suppose the answer is I wouldn’t.