The Most Interesting Man In the World
…..is doubtless lying on a Hawaiian beach right now, lazing in the sun and feeling the trade winds ruffle what little hair he has.
Not that I really begrudge him the trip, you see. Dr. Awesomesauce has got seasonal depression as bad as the rest of us poor Pacific Northwesterners, his light box broke, and it’s late February……what’re ya gonna do? Actually, he schedules these trips almost a year in advance because he KNOWS he’s going to feel lousy in late winter, when the novelty of snow and ice has long since lost its appeal, and the trees are all still dead and it’s too cold and damp out to do anything.
I wish my moods were that easy to predict. Of course, now that he’s off somewhere on Maui working on his tan and (hopefully) shaking those wintertime blues, I wish I could get his advice on this latest wrinkle in my own situation. I’m still just this side of hypomanic, my sleep has gone to hell, and I’m in waaaaay over my head at work. I also have no idea whatsoever of what I am supposed to DO about it.
I’ve been taking the Zyprexa off and on for several weeks, although lately it’s seemed that I only take it on nights when I want to get a decent night’s rest and not be crazy the next day. But I can’t take the stuff all the time—it’s a PRN for Pete’s sake—and without Dr. A’s guidance I feel sort of adrift.
I don’t think I like relying on a doctor as much as I do this one, even if he IS the most interesting man in the world. (In my opinion, anyway—who else do I know who has been all over the world, cans his own fruits and vegetables, and calls it “cheating” when he makes his wife a birthday cake from a mix?!) I know I could talk to an on-call psychiatrist or resident and be treated very well; I’ve had to do so on a couple of occasions before when Dr. A was out of town, and they’ve been nothing but wonderful.
And I may have to yet, if I can’t overcome all this anxiety surrounding my work and the enormous amount of scrutiny I’ll be under for the foreseeable future. This is every bit as hard as clinical practicum was when I was in nursing school. I was the kind of kid who beat myself black-and-blue teaching myself how to ride a bike, never wanting anyone to even know I was trying—much less critique me—until I’d mastered it. So skills demo labs were excruciating experiences: I not only had to practice the skill with my classmates, I had to do it in front of an instructor and be graded on it.
Now here I am, relatively late in life, being faced with a similar situation and feeling VERY unsure whether I can withstand the constant watching and evaluating and criticizing. With the wisdom of fifty-five years on this planet, I understand perfectly well why it has to be done this way, and I accept it for what it is. I just don’t know if I can get through it.
However, the job has one big thing going for it besides the obvious benefits like money, health insurance, and benefits: it’s intriguing. And I love intrigue. I love to delve deep into a mystery and try to figure out all the angles. I love doing root-cause analysis and investigating occurrences to see why they happened. That’s what this job basically IS, and if I can just survive the rigors of training, it might just be worth it.
So that—even more than my recent bout with bronchitis and the endless wheezing that will undoubtedly go on until Easter—is what’s interfering with my sleep and messing with my head. I’m not sure that can be medicated away. But the fact that I have enough of my marbles left to grasp that concept tells me that I’m only running alongside the crazy train instead of riding it. That’ll be a relief to my friends and family who are already worried that the fucker’s jumped the tracks.
In the meantime, I’ll just try to focus on what I need to do to get my sleep schedule back to normal…..and who knows, maybe I’ll dream of spiriting Will away with me to a white-sand beach, where we can leave the chill behind and doze happily in the sun.