The Middle of the Toad #5

I am nearing the end of the first page of ‘Out of the Silent Planet’ by C. S. Lewis.

The next sentence is ‘His only chance now was Sterk, on the far side of the hills, and a good six miles away.’

Next, some very very rough notes. I have really gone off reservation regarding my toady posts. I will try my best to concentrate my mind on C.S. Lewis’s story tomorrow night…

I have been thinking about psychedelics a lot recently. What gets me hot under the collar and wet in the eyeballs is thinking about the people who are (seemingly) unthinkingly keen on the idea of taking ‘psychedelic’ poisons to cure the ills in their hearts and minds. People of roughly my age who experienced mental health ‘services’ in their teens in the 80s and 90s are often excited about such things, and others are so far gone or dead that they are unaware of much more than their self-sorrow to give a hoot.

Fortunate ones like myself who had a family, the less fortunate souls who were from what might be described as broken homes, and the least fortunate who had social services as their guardians -the orphans.

I only spent a short period of time in an adolescent unit in/near St. Albans… A quite fleeting experience of exclusion cells and being put to sleep.  The time was so brief, only about 2 months, about the length of many drug experiments on human guinea pigs as a matter of fact.

Anyways… I spent most of my teenage years on Lithium. I do not believe the doses I was instructed to take we’re nearly as high as some people I have come across over the years that were on meds. That said, the people I knew on the likes of Lithium would have been in their twenties or thirties. They had been on meds in their teens much like me. But I had a good doctor who got me off them just before adulthood is supposed to begin.

If I had a less competent doctor trying to look out for my best interests, I am certain that the prescribed drug-taking would have continued, and the doses most likely would have increased as adulthood beckoned,  with all the stresses and strains that are attached when coming to terms with all that. 

I don’t recall any terrible side effects of the Lithium. I do recall sleeping problems after stopping the Lithium. I did smoke pot sometimes, but it tended to cause severe panic attacks, so I never bought any, and I never formed a habit.

Most of the company I kept in my late teens/ early twenties were on something or other…

Before the troubles began in my very early teens, I was quite the loner who was happiest finding a quiet spot to go fishing… I believed in falling in love also, so did force myself to socialise a little bit.

I was slowly getting used to being less of a ‘daydreamer’ and most of my potential friends were the nerds, the boffins, the more sensible ones. Then, things changed after the death of a loved one haunted my mind…

The crazier I got, the more friends I made,  But not the potential friendships that were forming before.

I became a member of the sort of ‘least likely to do well in life’ lot… That is an awful way of putting it… But the crazier I became, the more friends I made, most of these friends liked to ‘experiment’ with drugs of various kinds. 

Now, I am not trying to paint the picture of someone here as a person who is blaming  ‘getting into the wrong crowd’ or bad medical practices for the woes that lay ahead. These are just some of the facts.

The friends I was making used to not appreciate my company very much at school during the week. I came across as ‘out of it’, a ‘weirdo’, a ‘freak’, a ‘nutter’ etc… Then at the weekend when they were high or drunk or whatever, suddenly we were more or less on the same ‘wave length’.

Taking the lithium had become part of my daily routine, I didn’t think of myself as on drugs. And I don’t think it is a coincidence that my social life seemed to me to thrive at weekends or during the holidays.

All the healthy friendships that were being gradually, healthily nurtured from primary school age before grief hit hard, had evaporated. They were being good children, concentrating on doing well at school and I am sure they were under strict instructions from their parents to stay away from me, and rightly so. I had become one of the bad crowd.

It is too much to unravel at this time. But it might add a little bit of context to the early paragraphs of this:

Drugs? Thank You, I’ll Pass

Break almost over,

The verses from the Bible I will be reading before my break at work is over:

1 Corinthians 13-16  and Psalms 102-103

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  1. Hi, I have just found your blog and am enjoying reading it. Hope things are going well today.


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