"let your boat of life be light, packed with only
what you need - a homely home and simple pleasures, someone to love and someone to love you,
enough to eat and enough to wear
and a little more than enough to drink:
for thirst is a dangerous thing"

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

i've resorted to drugs

After more than a month of very little sleep, things started winding down last week and, for some reason or other, I was still not sleeping.  
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This is all well and good for a lot of the time, but when you get to that really overtired state and you still do not sleep, you need help.  Well I did.

Michael will argue that I fall asleep faster than anyone else he knows (well I certainly hope so!!).  That is not really the issue.  I wake up every hour or so, look at the clock, toss turn, go to the toilet.  I started a little system of my own for counting the number of times I go to the toilet by tearing off one square of paper and placing it next to the basin every time I go.  Averaging about 6 squares every morning, neatly stacked next to the basin. Now this is a bit of a vicious circle as I only go to the toilet because I am tossing and turning and thinking that perhaps I am tossing and turning because I need to go to the toilet.  Is the tossing and turning causing my bladder to toss and turn?  Does this make sense?  Well come this last Sunday I was pretty desperate for a good night's sleep and en route to take Granny home we stopped at Wynberg Pharmacy to buy some cough mixture for her and to purchase the highly recommended little blue box of little blue pills for me.
Somnil Sleeping Capsules - 24 Capsules
Wynberg Pharmacy on the Main Road is a dreadful place to visit on a Sunday afternoon.  Firstly Sundays and Main Roads just kind of give you that "No Feeling", deserted shops, the litter lying around  from Saturday's end of month shopping extravaganza, the wedding brigade in the gardens and lonely prostitutes parading on corners hoping for a quick buck.  When we got there, I jumped out of the car into the middle of a serious bergie female cat fight.  I managed to get across the very busy road and told the nearly 8ft Nigerian security guard at the door of the chemist that he should do something.  He gave me a lazy shrug.  Don't think he is much into Main Road Sundays either.

Straight to the long prescription queue with parents with sick and snotty babies waiting for attention and luckily for me, it did not take that long to get my little stash and leave the depressing premises (not before giving the miserable 8ft security guard a friendly smile).

Sunday night was fast approaching and I was all excited about this lovely night's sleep that awaited me.  It took me only one night and one tablet to work out how this drug works.  It sucks the moisture out of your eyes to such an extent that you cannot open them.  Not at all.  Your eyes are so dry that your lids feel as though they have been super-glued to your eyeballs.  I slept pretty well though and soon forgot about the dryness, thinking it was probably a problem with my eyes.

Last night was the second test.  I took the tablet at around 9, watched a previously recorded episode of Graham Norton (all the while struggling to keep my well moisturised eyes open).  10.30 in bed and asleep. Slept very well.  Alarm had not gone off, so I thought I had better check the clock.  Heaven forbid, I could not open my eyes.  The lids were even more severely dried and stuck to my eyeballs than yesterday.  I lay on my back, forcing them to open, when I had a thought.  What about a little drop of spit in the corner of each eye?  Sorry it sounds gross but it was worth a try.   Oh dear, herein lies the next problem, my tongue was now glued to the roof of my mouth and there was not a drop of spittle to be found.  My tongue was so dry that it had cracked down the middle.  I had to get to the bathroom, turned on the tap and tried to drink.  The cold water took about 3 minutes to eventually soften my hardened, dried out tongue and moisten my mouth.

This drug needs further investigation, so this morning I looked up the "Side Effects and Special Precautions":-

The most common side-effect is sedation (THAT IS THE SIDE EFFECT, I AM LOOKING FOR, SILLY), varying from slight drowsiness to deep sleep (DEEP SLEEP, SEDATION, THAT'S WHAT I AM LOOKING FOR, STUPID), and including lassitude, dizziness and in-coordination (PREPARED TO ACCEPT THESE TOO IF SEDATION AND DEEP SLEEP IS FORTHCOMING).

Other side-effects include gastro-intestinal disturbances such as nausea (CAN TAKE A VALOID), vomiting (A SECOND VALOID), diarrhoea (IMODIUM) or constipation (PRUNE JUICE), anorexia (I WISH) or increased appetite (THAT WOULD BE A PROBLEM BUT I WOULD FIRST HAVE TO BE ABLE TO OPEN MY EYES TO BE ABLE TO FIND MY WAY TO THE FRIDGE, ONCE  I GOT THERE, WHAT WOULD I DO WITH MY HARD AND DRIED OUT TONGUE - ICE CREAM!!!!) and epigastric pain (SOUNDS HORRIBLE, MAYBE THAT WILL HAPPEN AFTER THE ICE CREAM).

Doxylamine succinate may also produce antimuscarinic effects (THIS MEANS SUCKING UP ALL THE MOISTURE IN YOUR EYES AND MOUTH) including blurred vision (IF YOU ARE LUCKY ENOUGH TO BE ABLE TO OPEN YOUR EYES TO TRY TO SEE HOW BLURRED YOUR VISION REALLY IS), difficulty in micturition (THINK THIS MEANS "WEEING" THIS SIDE EFFECT WOULD ALSO BE A BONUS FOR ME), dysuria (WHAT DOES THIS MEAN SISTER HELEN?), dryness of the mouth (YOU HAVE TO EXPERIENCE THIS TO BELIEVE IT) and tightness of the chest. Other central effects include hypotension, muscular weakness, tinnitus, euphoria (COOL, I LOVE EUPHORIA) or depression, headache, irritability and nightmares (DREAMING YOU ARE IN A DESERT WITH ONLY WILLARDS SALT AND VINEGAR CHIPS TO EAT).

Paradoxical central nervous system stimulation may occur with insomnia (THIS DOES NOT MAKE SENSE FOR A SLEEPING TABLET TO CAUSE INSOMNIA), nervousness, tachycardia, tremors and convulsions.

Doxylamine succinate should not be taken during pregnancy, nor whilst breastfeeding (CAN YOU IMAGINE THAT POOR HUNGRY BABY IN THE MORNING TRYING TO SUCK ANY MOISTURE OUT OF HIS MOTHER??)
Allergic reactions and cross-sensitivity to related medicines may occur.
Blood disorders, including agranulocytosis, leucopenia and haemolytic anemia have been reported.

SCARY CANARY.  However, I think the 2 good nights sleep were worth it.  My eyes are now blinking properly and after 3 cups of tea (and Jan's birthday cake) my tongue is back to normal.  I am prepared to try it for the third night tonight (WATCH THIS SPACE).
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Noseweek would be proud of me.  On looking for a picture of my new miracle tablet for this posting, I found this site.  Click here.  Can you believe that expats can be so ripped off?  I paid the grand sum of R28-00 for 24 tablets and they are wanting R295 for the same pack!!  Have a look what they are charging for Corenza C and Disprin.  How can people get away with charging these prices? Perhaps they are over the counter addictive types of tablets that South African addicts in London would pay this much money for.  Just wrong.

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