vladdraculea: Julia set fractal with Ace and Arrow Pride colors, black, grey, white, green, and purple (Ben)
The past week and a half has been full of brain ugh. Lots and lots of brain ugh. Mostly of the brain zaps and feel like we're falling asleep on our feet variety, with a little heightened ear-ringing thrown in. It's not so much brain fog but, it's like we have a fever but without the high temperature and without the aches and pains that sometimes come with a fever. Or like the time we went off Effexor XR back in 2013: same exact problem.

We've been on a different SNRI called duloxetine for the past 11 years and we went through a period a year or two after having been on 60 mg twice a day where this started happening again, but we got our doctor to change the dosing schedule to 30 mg four times a day and the problem went away and never came back. Till this month. So we figured it probably wasn't that either.

And someone in our hypermobile Autistics group on fb said it could be a temporal lobe migraine thing, but we have been told by a doctor (not our regular doctor and not even a neurologist, so maybe they were wrong?) that our headaches aren't actually migraines, and anyway, we're taking 7.2 grams (yes, really that much) of gabapentin a day (divided so we take half at bedtime with three smaller doses at breakfast, lunch, and supper) and we haven't had much in the way of headache pain in the past two weeks. So it's probably not that either, since a. gabapentin is a migraine prevention drug and b. it especially assists other anticonvulsants in treating temporal lobe epilepsy. And while temporal lobe epilepsy is not the same thing as temporal lobe migraines, my intuition says there is little chance we've just out of the blue started having non-headache migraine symptoms of the sort that would be obliterated by taking even a quarter of the dose of gabapentin we're taking.

But going back to the SNRI withdrawal thing, this afternoon, I wondered if the current batch of our SNRI might be ... off ... somehow. Like could it be a bad batch, or not the extended release kind we've been on for a while? So went and counted the remaining pills in our current bottle and it seems we started taking this batch on June 2, three days before all this started. It might be a coincidence, but it's suspicious timing.

On the other hand, according to our doctor, perimenopause could explain just about anything. Including this kind of thing. So maybe it's not our SNRI after all. Ugh. And we won't know for sure unless we get a refill and all of a sudden these symptoms just go poof! But that won't be for another two weeks.

Meanwhile, we have to have our first mammogram because breasts. Which I wish we didn't have, though Vlad doesn't mind them and surgery isn't covered and ugh.
vladdraculea: Rainbow Autistic Pride lemniscate over the black, grey, white, and purple stripes of the Asexuality Pride flag (Default)
After I saw this post, I got to thinking: what would I do if I could get a body upgrade? What would I do with my current, ill-fitting, constantly dysphoria-inducing bio body? I mean, if I could have a new (nanotechnological) robot body that looked like the real me and supported me to act the way I would act if I had a choice (e.g.: in everything from schooling, to work, to friendship, to family interactions and other social relationships), I would probably never want to spend another minute in this body if I could possibly help it. It's miserable.

But I'd hate the idea of killing it, and anyway it'd be so much better just knowing that spending time in this body while it were awake would only be a *part* of my day-to-day life.

I would imagine it would be a matter of living in the two bodies simultaneously: each an appendage of the whole. So, in my robot body I'd take care of the household chores, food preparation, and other tasks this bio body can't do (or can't do well), while in the bio body eat, sleep, exercise, meditate, and spend time with my partner silking and ealying in ealy lovable soft comfy 💜silk💖.

Effectively, this would mean this body would have its ideal care-giver in the form of me-in-my-robot body, and when this body were sleeping, I'd get a several hour break from the dysphoria and be able to do things like study, write, dance, do music, arts and crafts, and activism — all things I pretty much can't do in this body — and of course spend time with friends as *me*.

Naturally, part of my day in my robot body would also involve robot maintenance — stuff that amounts to the robot-equivalent of sleep, eating, exercising, and hygiene — and that stuff could be managed while my bio body were awake doing things like exercise, meditation, and other body-self-care, too.

And I'd probably go to the Zen center in both bodies, since meditation is good for robot brains as well as for bio brains. It would probably be a little hard for people to get used to the idea of a person who has two bodies, but I would imagine people would eventually get used to seeing the two bodies doing zazen next to each other. At the gym, it'd just look like “some pale blond lady getting coached by a guy with long black curly hair and a dark tan”, but in actuality, it would be the robot body spotting the bio body through each exercise, so the bio body wouldn't have to use up too many spoons on the cognitive aspects of working out.

And there would be times where I'd want to hang out with friends when the bio body wouldn't happen to be sleeping, so I'd probably end up communicating mostly through my robot body while my bio body would sit there quietly as if just listening to the conversation. Naturally, this wouldn't be ideal, since all the while the bio body would be awake, it would constantly be fielding sensory overload, physical pain, and other things that would be distracting to me as a whole, even if my robot brain were able to deal with the influx of discomfort coming from the bio brain, and this would make socializing less than ideal.

Also, there'd be the distraction of having my bio body sitting there and — especially if the social occasion involved spending time with family — having people look at the bio body instead of the robot body when addressing me. It would feel like a bit of a rejection of the real me (that is best represented by my robot body), and that would suck. I have a feeling my parents and sister would never accept the real me. And there'd be some people who, having known me for many years, would also be very reluctant to accept the robot body as really being me and my bio body as never having been a good fit for me.

But I'm sure most of my current close friends would accept the change — the acquisition of a robot body that fits the real me way better than my bio body does — without much difficulty at all, and I could finally start relating to people and to the rest of the world (to nature, to my spirituality, to my vocation, etc.) in a way I haven't been able to in all the decades of living in this bio body. And that would be awesome, in the original meaning of that word. 😊

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vladdraculea: Rainbow Autistic Pride lemniscate over the black, grey, white, and purple stripes of the Asexuality Pride flag (Default)
Vlad Drăculea

June 2017

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