I don’t like drugs. It’s not so much that I mind colorful pills, powders, foliage or whatever, and really I don’t mind other people taking them. It’s like those whisps of cotton floating through the air or sesame seeds on bagels; they’re there I suppose, but I hardly even notice anymore, and though I don’t have any moral qualms with their existence, I prefer my garden-veggie-schmered carbalicious treat without them. I never have liked them as far as I can tell (not the sesames, although I don’t think I like them much either). This is judging from the childhood horror stories recounted by my mother when describing the lengths to which she would have to boldly go in order to rescue me from yucky germies. No child enjoys taking medicine, but my mother always mentions that medicating my sister never involved sprints through the house, flying plastic ponies, or several nurses in the ER. From then on it was no motrin, no nyquil, no nothing.
I always forget that I don’t like drugs. An absurd statement I know, but it’s the truth. I suspect this is a result of my last four years of experience with them. I used to be afraid of them, but these collegiate years taught me to question a lot of what I feared and in the end I ended up embracing most of it. I stopped hating them – something you can really only do to things you fear – and even gave in a little (Come on girl, a little Aleve when you’re bleeding for four days straight isn’t too harsh a mark on your character, among others)
But even in my by no means negative or frightening experiences with drugs, I never found that I really enjoyed them. They improved the pain from cramps but didn’t stop it, and they made things feel a little funny, but not without making everything unpleasantly distant. In my admittedly limited experience, I have encountered drugs that do one of two things – they dull slightly or they make (almost) everything feel like I’m grabbing it through a wall of cotton.
The latest has been this vikodin. The first day or two I didn’t notice it doing much. But by the third day, I went for a walk and felt like I was swimming. I could feel myself slowly sloshing through the suburban green, but I didn’t feel like I could actually touch anything that was near me. The fourth day I slept for close to 18 hours, and I recall having to force myself to get up when I had to pee (because I was vaguely aware that my abdomen shoudn’t hurt). The next day I got sick – too many drugs and too little food – so I opted for more jaw-pain and the ability to carry on a somewhat coherent conversation without doubling over.
But ironically, these last few days have been the only ones where I haven’t felt my recent knee injury; I was actually beginning to forget I had it. Now that I’m off the Vikes it stings, quivers, and tightens every time I un-bend it.
note to self:
“I had become, with the approach of night, once more aware of loneliness and time – those two companions without whom no journey can yield us anything.” – Lawrence Durrell