Surviving Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Symptoms by Stacy Menka Piccolo

Pictured: Stacy Piccolo

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I’m sitting here…

And I am not having any palpitations in my chest; my heart is not beating fast.
I am not having any fluttering in my esophagus or my thymus.
I don’t have any painful little bumps underneath the skin on my stomach.
I don’t have any muscle spasms.
I am just sitting here.

It doesn’t feel like someone is choking me.  There is no feeling of a hand clasping my throat.
It is not hard to swallow.
There is no electrical impulse near my left shoulder.
And there is no sharp pain in random places in my arms.

My eyes are not seeing double.
I have no vision disturbance.
It doesn’t look like the background is in front of the foreground.
People have only two eyes, not four.

I’m sitting here and I’m not dizzy or disoriented.
My eyes are not rolling back in my head; I don’t see lightning flashes when I close my eyes.
My lungs don’t feel like they are being crushed and sticking together.
I’m not struggling for breath and I don’t have a fever.

I’m just sitting here and there are no rising explosions in my chest.
Nothing feels like it is blowing up; there is no fire.
It doesn’t feel like I’ve broken my jaw, my nose, or my cheekbone.
I don’t have a rash that looks like stitches on my eyebrow.
And I don’t feel like I’ve been beaten up.

I’m sitting here and my whole scalp isn’t broken out in rashes either.
My cheeks don’t look chemically burnt.
It doesn’t feel like someone punched me in the stomach.
And there is no loud ringing in my ears.

There’s not a feeling of water flushing down my neck and back.
My brain doesn’t feel like it’s swollen or floating around.
It doesn’t feel like it is getting so big that it is ready to burst through my skull; there is no pressure.
Every individual hair follicle doesn’t feel painful and sensitive to the touch.

I’m sitting here and I don’t feel too tired to stand.
It doesn’t feel like something is vibrating in my pelvis.
It doesn’t feel like my chest is caving in.
And it doesn’t feel like every breath will be my last.

I’m sitting here and I don’t have a migraine or a headache.
It doesn’t feel like I have black n’ blues where there are none.
There is no feeling of a lightning bolt in my foot; no electrical impulses in my body.
It doesn’t feel like something is crawling under my skin; there is no “bug” on my lip.

I’m sitting here and I don’t feel overstimulated by everything I see, hear, taste, feel and smell.
My shoulders are not rounded forward for protection, nor are they creeping up to my ears with fright.
My neck muscles are not tense and painful.
My lymph nodes are not swollen.
There is no phantom pain moving all throughout my body.

In fact, I have no pain at all…I’m finally just sitting here.

There were so many different doctors.  So many tests.  They all said nothing was wrong; that it was all in my head.  Now I know why.  These were the effects of Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal.  Many do not think it is serious or believe it exists.  I wish I knew then so that I didn’t worry.
I wish I knew when I could barely even sit there.

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