50 milligrams of sumatriptan succinate to unscrew the vice from my head
Then 20 of that other stuff for 12 hours of stability
From dawn to dusk I am medicated
I think I need to take a walk
I am dependent on this stuff and that, my friend, is what really scares me
You know, psychologically, when you say stuff you really want to say the other s-word
And it makes sense
I hate this shift in ability
One day I am composed and the next I am shipwrecked on a cracking dam
Swearing away my very breath for a nap or a cup of coffee or a puppy
My feet would run away from me if they could and
my fingers would pound out a sonata if
I could sit still
long enough to learn how to read bass clef
I shiver all the time, shaking the table, spilling the tea
Slipping up the stairs and Holy shingles! have you ever seen such a good tree?
No really, that is a good tree,
It looks like it has been standing there for ages
With gnarled branches cushioning little birds’ nests
And empty hands stretching out to grasp the sun’s offerings
Touching the sky, embracing the wind
I want to be like that tree
Strong and tall and steady
And beautiful all at the same time
But the drugs make me jumpy and hungry, but not,
And pinpoint-focused and awake, but not,
This terrible stuff that twists my stomach and puts my brain through hell!
I hate it.
But what am I without?
I wrote this poem last year, when I was deciding whether the side effects of my medication or the symptoms of my condition were worse. At the time, I did not know that I could talk to my doctor about changing dosages or types of medications to relieve the side effects. Thankfully, my doctor has helped me switch to a different medication, so the feelings are no longer this intense.
Could you identify with any parts of this, or did you share it with their child? Did they have any reaction? Do you have any tips for talking about your child’s experience or side effects with them?
Addition: SOVA project is excited to share this previously written poem by a SOVA ambassador!