Friday, August 7, 2009

Free alcohol everywhere... Exhaustion and my enourmous penis... Strange dreams and strange enthusiasm...

I wonder if my rather cynical mis-naming of this post will lead to a spike in readers here at Drunk in Cardiff? Whatever, I'm delighted with my total of around 1,000 views a week. If you do read thank you and I hope you take something from it; if you comment doubly so, it's a great thrill and very much encouraged, I always reply.

If you were searching for enormous penises, I apologise, there is related discussion to follow but it may not be your penile cup of tea.

A slight alarum yesterday on the Antabuse front. I've taken it without trouble for a couple of months now. Apart from some initial teething troubles all has been well. There was something approaching what the medics, with their arcane verbiage, call a funny turn with those first tablets, but the lovely hospital staff thought a residue of eczema cream booze in my system was to blame. A previous bout of Antabuse aided sobriety was also pretty positive, the one blip came through some antiperspirant which like Arthur Dent's planning notice ('behind a sign saying beware of the leopard) hid its contents ever so demurely. A couple of days of splitting headaches though and some unpeeling of labels to find the contains alcohol notice and all was well. Note to cosmetics companies - I'm sure it's a growing market, so why not proudly proclaim that you are alcohol free.

I've had headaches again in the last week. Something I never suffer from and yesterday I had quite the spacey episode after going into a builders' merchants and smelling some very fumey fumes. I'm not sure why I mention this, it's only in passing as it's all passed, but it's a concern. Mrs CD and I abandoned a planned Chinese cooking adventure last week because we couldn't find an alcohol free recipe. I know that alcohol burns off once you heat your dry sherry, but with half a bottle of the stuff in a braised belly pork recipe it seemed a risk not risking. I'm going to try and find a definitive answer from the manufacturers' website.

Tiredness struck me too over the last couple of days. I've seen the acronym HALT used a lot on alcohol treatment websites - Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired - as danger signs for relapse. If you've read here recently you'll know that angry and hungry aren't too much of a problem for me, lonely a little more so. I don't think of tiredness as a trigger for drinking - so much of my consumption was 'drinking to unconsciousness' and as an aid to sleep, but, as I think about it now I can remember the slothful lethargic fug that used to engulf me until a few energising pints went in. This tiredness is far better though. It's from my recently discovered and much-loved busy-ness. Yesterday Mrs CD and I slumped out in front of the PC to watch a couple of TV programmes and I realised that it was the first time I'd switched off for several days.

Don't for one moment get the idea that I'm working-working-working, I'm not. But, since I started helping out with the website I've spent an awful lot of time thinking about it or logged on to the computer ostensibly doing things about it (even when rivalling Archimedes in the displacement activity thang). My mind naturally hums with thoughts of things that SHOULD be done, projects that MUST be started - otherwise I'm a loser and a failure - and simply slumping and watching without too much thought was a great relief. That it was the marvelous film Man on a Wire, about a superbly vivacious French tightrope walker who crossed the chasm between New York's tragically missing Twin Towers was even better. An excellent film, if you haven't seen it I heartily recommend it.

Time for my enormous penis now I think. Well, it's a red herring (I do like the British penchant for double-entendtre and sniggery pokery) of sorts. This is about Trazadone, my antidepressant. The sledgehammer blow of sleep it delivers is a boon at the moment but it does leave a drowsiness in the system which can persist. I've complained previously that if I'm tardy in popping my last-thing-at-night pills I lose pretty much the whole of the next morning. If I take it too early Mrs CD ends up with a slurring wreck as a companion - charmingly she finds this rather sweet and funny.

I'm trying to find the perfect time to take it. If you notice things like times of posting, you'll see the early hour of this one - it's 7.18am here in Cardiff, which is fantastic, it's a beautiful morning here - which is only possible because I took the Trazadone before 10pm last night.

Where's the penis I hear you cry. OK. Well, at my last appointment with the Community Addiction Unit, the doctor again raised the possibility of raising the dose towards the maximum. My GP had refused to do this until he received a letter from the CAU confirming their request, saying, "That dose isn't normally administered outside psychiactric hospital". I am concerned that my slight daytime drowsiness might now become Day of the Living Cardiff Drunk. (OK, we're here now) The CAU doctor also warned me about erections - large and long ones (snigger) - which would very likely occur at this larger dose. (Just that, and I only came here for the title, you misled you shout - well, welcome to the world of journalism and bear this in mind next time you read a newspaper say I). Every antidepressant medication I've ever taken has warned of some sort of sexual effect - spontaneous orgasm i one case - but I've never been troubled. Trazadone's effect in this area (one of great enormity to me (oh dear, sorry)) is more to do with blood pressure than mind I think. We shall have to see.

My dreams continue to become more lively and I'm so glad to have a dream life back. Last night's was odd and involved one of my mum and dad's neighbours and a return to the detox unit at Whitchurch - what it meant I can't begin to fathom; although I have thought more of booze in the last few days.

Also coming back to life is enthusiasm - something that has been absent from my life for an awfully long time. In my cheerless cups I became a nasty, cynical, dismissive, bitter old git. I'd never have been so positive as to watch a film as I did last night and enthuse about it, I would've railed against it, picked fault and sneered. Isn't that fantastic?! It feels like it. I'm loving listening to music (part of my life blood as a youngster, but latterly something to over-analyse and destroy with my own negativity). It's not something I normally do here, but I'll recommend wholeheartedly a Cardiff band who have really grabbed my throat, they're called Future of the Left and were also amazing in a previous incarnation as Mclusky - they are today's daily happy and the words that spring to mind when I listen to them are Ferociously Intelligent, Monster Funky Basslines and Quite Frightening - all of which, as you know, are good things.

If you spent it, thank you for your time. (And it's quite a long time on this one - I considered splitting this post, but decided against it, it's just all pouring out and I'm loving it).



Anybeth said...

so Mrs. CD will have a slurring companion with a giant erection. Not bad.

SZ said...

Yep, catching title, but good post, even without the enormous penis. (I'm taking Lexapro, and their warnings are much less interesting.)

Thanks for the blog. I love the way you work humor into a lot of it, but speak candidly about depression and drinking.

The Drinker said...

I'm sure she'll be delighted Anybeth - it's a step or two up from unconscious, flacid and very bad skin, my previous default setting.

Hello SZ. Thank you very much. Really appreciate it. I've never taken that one - the current most popular one round here seems to be Mirtazapine, which I was very good on, but it gave me a very bad skin rash, which was annoying to say the least.

My favourite ever side affect warning has to be, "May start to believe things that are untrue," and a colleague once took something which promised, "Unconsciousness and death."