High Tolerance

Klonopin

Klonopin (clonazepam) is a benzodiazepine. Clonazepam affects chemicals in the brain that may be unbalanced.

It began in the 7th grade with strep throat and high blood pressure. Doctors couldn’t figure out why  I had stroke level numbers every time they strapped the cuff to my arm. One even told my Mama how she must be getting me worked up. When there is no definitive answer readily available, always blame the parents. It worked for Freud. They sent me to specialists. Heart specialists. I remember the heart one because his temperament can best described as a thoroughbred asshole. Even Dr. Know-It-All still couldn’t figure out why my blood pressure shot up. No answers. The best remedy they gave my parents resided in pills. They knocked me out. I had to be home-schooled most of my 7th and 8th grade middle school years.

A medical student fumbled across the answer one day. No one took him seriously. He strapped the cuff to my arms and my legs. Numbers shot off the charts. He looked at my Mama and made the suggestion about my kidneys.

At this point, Mama had reached all her wit’s ends. All her wits at all her ends. She wanted answers. We got the recommendation to Cleveland Clinic and off we set out in search of something real. Within half a day in Cleveland, we had a diagnosis, a treatment plan, but there would never be a cure. One kidney is one kidney. I couldn’t make a new magical functioning kidney reappear.

We could control my blood pressure, limit salt intake, and guard the one good kidney in my body like the Baby Jesus. I had to stop playing softball at this point. One wrong slide on the right side and I would have no kidneys. I accepted their facts and my life changed. I managed and went on as a normal teenager. Eventually, I’d go against doctor’s orders and was able to get pregnant twice. One child would be born from these pregnancies. If you have followed this site, you know this child as my son and the ‘terrific toddler’. He’s not a toddler anymore.

Xanax

Xanax (alprazolam) is a benzodiazepine (ben-zoe-dye-AZE-eh-peen). Alprazolam affects chemicals in the brain that may be unbalanced in people with anxiety.

My first pregnancy about killed me. The good kidney couldn’t sustain getting beat by my first husband and carrying a child. I spent almost every other week in the hospital getting fluids pumped into my body. I stayed dehydrated. One night, both my eyes were blacked and although my heart still beat inside my chest, the baby inside would no longer have a heartbeat. They cut it out, or sucked it out. During the procedure I visited Twilight Land and cannot tell you exactly what happened to my first child. I only asked if he was gone when I awoke. I assumed the child was a boy. The nurse said ‘yes.’ They sent me home with script for Vicoden. I didn’t need it. The pain resided more in my heart than any physical symptoms I had. Arriving home, I curled up with my dog and cried. A few days later, my breast leaked milked for a child I didn’t have. I took a knife to my wedding album. Cheap marriage photos purchased at a quickie, impromptu ceremony in Tennessee.

I decided to finally start taking their Vicoden then. I took it to numb the sadness, the pain. I took it knowing I didn’t want to feel empty anymore. I took it only on the bad nights. The nights where I remembered being held in a laundry room floor and kicked in the stomach. I took it on the nights when I found out my ex-husband had gotten another girl pregnant. Our due dates were two weeks apart. Out there in this world is a walking and talking teenager, who is the same age as my baby would have been if it had gotten to live.

Vicoden is a pain killer.

I went on trying to live normally. I went on without pills for awhile. Even without the prescribed ones, pills were always around. Everyone here had a script for something and they were always selling. Pills were never hard to come by in this region. Eventually, I’d get my own script too. I had anxiety. Go talk to a lady once every few weeks, then see the doctor once every few months and fill out the poor people paperwork, and I got lots of pills.

It started with Klonopin. It ended with Xanax. It ended with addiction. It ended with me not recognizing myself. It ended with gambling away paychecks. I thank God everyday it ended there.

Tolerance

The ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.

High fucking tolerance. I have it. My body started being bred in the 7th grade to have a high tolerance. I can tolerate high doses. I can tolerate a lot of medication. Morphine lasted 15 minutes on me when I went into labor. They had to bring in something stronger.

I think back on the things I’ve had to tolerate. The hits from a man’s fist and kicks from his boots. The death of my first child. The affair which brought another living child into this world, while mine died.

Tolerated the worst in human beings because I wanted to be loved. I wanted to thrive in some kind of happily-ever-after.

I’m picking at my chipped nail polish while making a decision. Knowing it’s time to put my foot down. Draw the line in my sand.

I don’t want to tolerate much anymore.

I’ve tolerated quite enough.

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