July 02, 2008

Tom Cruise round 2

Why is it that most days of my life I struggle to wake up, yet when I'm going Golfing, or have an early softball game, I practically bound out of bed at the slightest beep (even if it's just my neighbor disarming his car alarm)? Stupid question, right? It is at those times I have "a reason" to get up. Granted, I get up at 4 a.m. only two times a week, so I don't really have a schedule, and that is throwing me out of whack.
I don't know why, but I was thinking about that as I awoke this morning. If all an adult really needs is 7-8 hours of sleep, why did I not wake up until 10 a.m. (10 hours of sleep) this morning? In all honesty, it's because my "reason" for getting up is that I don't work until 1 p.m. today. That's it? That's my reason? What about my family? I've got all this time in the morning I could be playing with my daughter, or helping my wife around the house...yet subconsciously it's not good enough a reason for me? (Ironically, after I had these thoughts when I woke up, first thing I did was head to the computer and start blogging...)
So, then I got to thinking: "You know, Jim, they say that people with depression have a hard time getting out of bed." "Yeah, well, there's a great big difference between being depressed and having depression." I argue with myself a lot, in case you didn't know, but that's about as far as we got before I started going into my anti-medication rant. This last sentence should serve as a warning that you're about to hear the results of that rant.
Maybe we can blame it on Mel Gibson/Braveheart this time. I really don't know exactly what Tom Cruise's stance on medications are, just that he got in a tiff with Brooke Shields over her taking anti-depressants for post-partum depression (I do not share his view in this case). And, btw, I'm sorry you've heard this all before, but I just keep coming back to it with different takes.
This is pretty much what came to me this morning as I argued with myself that sleep deprivation is the cause, not depression, and even if it were depression, there are reasons for that that I can take care of myself. It all then culminated with: "The reason I'm so against medication!" Okay, not The reason, since I've given so many, but one of the top 5 at least. So, you remember the scene, William Wallace is in the dungeon awaiting execution when the french chick (who was not as good looking as his wife that got killed) comes to give him
something to "dull the pain", but he refuses, saying that it will also
dull his senses, and he'll need them all. There are more than plenty of sad people in this world who self medicate all the time. Not necessarily alcoholics either, just regular Joes who go to work and need something to "dull the senses". Don't forget the "recreational" marijuana use either. Now, one of these drugs is legal, the other isn't, but both are prohibited by my religion. Yet, oddly enough, other drugs that provide the same result are okay in my church...if you have a doctor's note. It seems that in Utah that note is more than easy to get, btw. This is my fundamental problem with depression (and, so you don't have to go through a 100 page paper on A.D.D. and A.D.H.D. either, this works for them too): Over diagnosing, and "get me that note!" syndrome, but mostly the latter of those two.
If only we could apply the doctor's note to all the "problems" we have in our lives. Now, I'm already running long winded here, so I'll just give you my favorite illustration of the new doctor's note in action and be done: "Sorry, God, I cannot sacrifice Isaac unto you, my doctor says it would be detrimental to his health." -Abraham.


dragonb said...

I won't argue too much, other than to say I think you are dead wrong.

The problem as you see it is over-medication, self-medication, get me that prescription, etc.

That is a much, much, much, much better problem than under-medication.

You can't have your cake and eat it too. Until Doctors are God or vice-versa, there will be errors one way or the other.

I vote with every ounce of strength in me for over-medication.

SalGal said...

I think I'm reading between the lines here, but at the same time it makes me wonder what you think about me and my drug use...

Yes, there is a difference between being depressed (temporary) and having depression (permanent). You do know it's a disease though, right? You wouldn't refuse medication if you were diabetic or had genetically high cholesterol (notice I said genetic, not diet-related) would you? I hate a cop-out as much as the next person but contrary to an imperfect mortal belief, the scriptures, service, large amounts of prayer and faith along with Priesthood blessings do not a remedy make when talking about the disease.

I understand (I think) your avoidance of medication. I know who you're looking at. But there is an unavoidable issue that you're missing, or in denial of: It runs in the family. RAMPANTLY.

I totally agree that there are many over-medicated people out there avoiding life instead of dealing with it. And I get that you don't disapprove of the genuine need and use of medications. And I'm also not saying that you have anything or need anything.

I'm just saying, don't be so hell-bent on not being a certain person that you become them in spite of yourself.

Kesten said...

you know if I leave a comment it's really worth thinking about.
AMEN to what you said, BUT, I have heard (haven't tried/have concidered) that once someone did go on meds, it made them AND their family happier. SO, my advice is to try it, in a small amount and see if it does anything. If not, you can always go back to being the off meds you. Plus, maybe if you try it and it works, I would be brave enough to also.

Jimbo said...

Sally: You are mostly hitting the nail right on the head...mostly. To be brutally honest, I do wonder/worry/regretfully-judge-you-a-little about your prescription drug use. Let me clarify a few thoughts first though. I think my underlying motivation for writing these types of posts are that I want everyone else to stop waiting (perhaps hopefully) for it to happen to me. I think you do understand me correctly, as shown by the last two paragraphs in your comments.
However, to borrow a phrase from dragonb, in reply to the first part of your comments, I think you are dead wrong when it comes to what I struggle with. I have seen the cause and blessed effect of *every* *single* *thing* you pointed out as not being a remedy, and I struggle every time when I am not doing, or doing the opposite, of those very things.
I honestly believe that every single person on Earth has the power to be healed, if it is His will. A lot of the time, it's not His will, and that's okay, but what I've been trying to point out is that some people won't even try.
So, to answer your question, No, I don't know that it is a disease, because I do not suffer from it. Sadly, I do not know you well enough to judge you the way I have, and I am sorry.

(For context and history (and some readers), yes I know depression is a disease that can be treated with certain medications.)

SalGal said...

No offense taken, bro. And just so you know, I haven't even thought about you in this context, so I'm definitely not watching and waiting for something to happen.

And you're right. If it's His will, anything can happen. It's just never happened for me. I accept my earthly trial with a grain of paranoia and hope for the best.