Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Overdose: My Legal HIgh

Beach Avenue garden; Sept. 1, 2015.
Same garden.
And again—all with no Photoshop!
When you take "dangerous" or "strong" medications, you have to do so consciously. I relied on a plastic pill tray into which I could load a month of my daily medications. I also routinely kept a diary of the readings of my daily tests that help me to determine how much of one medication I should take, but a few months ago I stopped using the trays and recording my volumes of data.

Instead, I just took my pills from the bottle and did my tests without recording the data and everything was fine until the other night. The night in question occurred during the irregularity of having a procedure on my lungs and then some "tough love" in the form of a 40-minute treatment of inhaling Ventoline—that night, I took my HIV medication and got into bed to read.

But then, after reading and forgetting I had already taken my HIV meds, I took more and went to sleep. When I woke up, I was on a speeding train racing through the streets of my memory. My HIV medications are psychotropic, so I was hallucinating like crazy. It was like being on a train racing through images on movie screens. It was overwhelming.

I luckily went back to sleep and then, an hour later, I woke up again. The relentless barrage of images was over and instead I had a vision of a new life in Stratford, Ontario. It was 2:30 am, but I got up and started looking at houses for sale in Stratford. Guess what? I could live in a fabulous home there for the same price as my downtown Vancouver condo.

I was very intent on selling here and moving. I thought it would be fabulous and friends from here would come to visit and stay with me during the theatre festival. And I saw myself easily living there without a car, using the train to visit Toronto and Montreal. Then I went back to sleep and when I woke up, I was happy to be here and I got out my pill tray and started using it again.

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