I have to write about lives lost. Not to scare anyone. Not to haunt anyone with these stories. Only to tell the truth of the gruesomeness of this suffering. To make it real.
A friend of mine, a writer, has told me it is important for me to write. To write not just for those suffering, after all WE KNOW this is real. WE KNOW this is not imagined. To write for the mother, father, brother, husband, wife, lover, friends and doctors and other medical professionals that do not know, care or believe that this is real. To understand that this is invisible. That we become warriors and survivors that either hide away in our bedrooms or travel the world with a stiff upper lip, swallowing our pain and symptoms.
I'm not just talking about benzodiazepines, although that is largely what I have been writing about. I'm talking about all psychotropics that are prescribed then mismanaged by medical professionals. I'm talking about being gaslit and left for dead.
One woman who died recently and whom I knew personally was a medical professional herself. She was essentially a doctor. She knew medicine. She knew the brain. She felt she was dying, or at the very least I am guessing she knew she did not want to survive this.
One year ago she wrote me and told me her story. Long time lexapro user, taken off in two weeks, then the doctors tried to patch her back up with an assortment of meds, TMS therapy, ECT and more. She landed on a benzo but her entire brain and body had been affected. She often told me she just wanted to be herself again. " I just want to be ME again" she said. We all speak those words, why do we all sound so eerily the same? She had gone to the doctor after a bad breakup and each subsequent doctor's visit landed her in deeper and deeper trouble, jangling her brain and body.
I'm not writing to tell a horror story but to tell a truth. So that her story isn't forgotten. She was not crazy, nor was she suicidal.
She wanted marriage, children, LIFE, work, travel. She wanted what most of us want, and most of us get. I still do believe she could have healed. I believe that we all can. The brain does heal but this injury creates such darkness it is almost impossible to see the light unless someone points it out for us and believes in us, walking and cradling us towards that light.
And it is a long fucking road.
There will be battle wounds but I still believe that recovery is on the other side.
We have to hold onto hope and stories of those recovered. That is why their stories are so powerful and so important. Believe me, when I feel my body and discomfort each day it is hard to hold on to this hope. It is hard to imagine or believe myself so I just have to do my day, each day and squeeze out as much life as I can.
When there are deaths in the community I go dark for several days, even weeks depending on if I knew the person or not. I feel their presence, their essence even if we have never met in person. I hold a thought and prayer for their life and their loss. More than ever, I feel in these moments that we all are one.
Someone who found themselves accidentally dependent and suffered an iatrogenic injury from medications that were prescribed. Sharing experience, strength and hope with others. This is written as a person on this winding path and NOT as a professional. Please contact a licensed professional for any medical/psychological care or advice. This is NOT a substitute for medical or psychological care. What is written here reflects my own personal experience ONLY.