I have a headache this big, and it has “twelve-pack of super-size Reese’s peanut butter cups” written all over it.

I’ve had this recurring headache for several days now.  It could be caused by any number of things:  stress, premenstrual syndrome, actual-menstrual syndrome, the unseasonably warm weather (90+ degrees in Portland, in July?), or good old-fashioned lack of sleep.  Also, I could have a brain tumor, but that is unlikely.

Also, I am fiddling around with my psychopharmacological supports.  Although my recent trial of Vyvanse did not go as well as we’d hoped, my psychiatrist does not want to give up on the augmenting-antidepressant-with-stimulant route, and so I am currently on a trial of Aderall–actually, I’m on a trial of generic Aderall, in an attempt to circumvent my insurance company’s pre-authorization requirement for ADD/ADHD drugs when they are prescribed for adults.  (I don’t have ADD or ADHD, incidentally.  Apparently stimlants aren’t just for spazzes anymore.  Hey, is that a chicken?!)  It was folly, of course; the insurance company still required the pre-authorization, but eventually I did get my generic stimulants.

What’s funny about taking generic stimulants is that your prescription bottle just says “AMPHETAMINE” on it.  Woo-hoo!  You’d think with a label that scandalous, it would work better.  Actually, I’m finding this experience similar to the failed Vyvanse experiment.  I felt irritable and anxious, and my appetite decreased, so I stopped taking it, and now I just feel sad.  Of course, I could chalk all of this up to my menstrual cycle–everything but the appetite decrease, of course–so how would I know how the amphetamines are really affecting me?  Maybe they aren’t affecting me at all.  Maybe I need to take more of them.  Except that if I’m losing my appetite on a mere 5 mg per day, I shudder to think of what my body would do on 10 mg or more.  I might never eat another Reese’s peanut butter cup again.  What profiteth it a woman if she gains the world but loses her appetite for it?

The other thing I don’t like about experimenting with stimulants is that in addition to it being a pain in the neck to fill the prescriptions, they are expensive.  I have prescription coverage, obviously, but I don’t like the waste.  I mean, this one’s generic, so it’s only $100 for a month’s worth (yes, I said “only”), which is a small price for my insurance company to pay for my health, I’m sure, but I only took maybe a week’s worth before deciding that they weren’t for me, and now I have a fistful of amphetamines I can’t return and don’t know what to do with, unless I sell them to a meth lab, which is against my personal ethics, and anyway, why would they buy amphetamines from me when they can steal Sudafed from their local pharmacy?  Not that I’ve thought this through or anything.  I’m just talking.

And now I have this headache I can’t get rid of.  Maybe it’s withdrawal.  That seems kind of ludicrous, considering that I was only taking 5 mg for about a week, but I suppose anything’s possible.  Even a brain tumor is possible.

And now, some random thoughts.

There’s a lady in our neighborhood who walks her dog, or rather, “walks” her dog by driving around in her truck and having him run beside the truck on a leash.  This just doesn’t seem right to me.  In point of fact, it just seems like it’s not safe for the dog.  Not that I’m a dog person, but unlike my husband, I don’t wish them any ill.  I keep thinking that the person must be disabled or have bad knees or whatever–I don’t want to be uncharitable and assume it’s just laziness–but maybe in that case one should just have someone else walk the dog.  You know, by foot.  Maybe she can’t afford to hire someone to walk the dog.  On the other hand, with the price of gas these days, you’d think it would be about even, so what’s the deal?  Maybe the dog likes running beside the truck on a leash.  Maybe the dog likes living dangerously.  Who knows.  It’s really none of my business, I guess, and moreover, if I’m not willing to offer to walk this lady’s dog myself for free, how much do I really care about the dog?  Enough to be judgmental, not enough to stick my nose where it arguably doesn’t belong.  There’s a profound lesson in here somewhere.

In the same vein, I used to notice, on my route to Mister Bubby’s school every day, another home in our neighborhood that sported two American flags hanging over its porch.  Both flags were extremely faded and ripped nearly to shreds.  I don’t think the person was making a political statement.  It’s not that kind of neighborhood.  I think they’d just left their flags up there for several years, and now they were hosed.  The flags, I mean.  Well, maybe the flag owners, too, I wouldn’t know, I never saw them.  I don’t think I’m particularly persnickety about flag protocol, but it does seem a shame to me that Old Glory should be left to rot in this manner.  It disturbs me.  Or rather, it would disturb me, during the school year, when I actually drove past that house every day.  It made me want to go out and buy these folks some new flags.  You know, maybe they’re older people on a fixed income, and they can’t afford new flags and maybe they’re also disabled or have bad knees and can’t climb the ladder and take the old flags down.  I wouldn’t know because I only cared enough to be judgmental, not enough to stick my nose, etc., etc.  I’m learning new things about myself that I don’t like.  On to other subjects.

Tomorrow is our neighborhood’s annual Fourth of July Gala.  We will be attending, as usual, even though I really don’t like the Fourth of July Gala.  It’s not that I hate America–I love America–but the Fourth of July Gala combines several things that I don’t enjoy, namely:

1) Crowds
2) Eating outside
3) Eating with children
4) Parades
5) Fun

So why am I going?  Because my family makes me.  Also, because I love America and I’ll be damned if someone holds a party for her and I won’t show up.  While there are brave men and women making the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom, by golly, I can endure a few lines and cutting up my children’s pancakes with a plastic knife.  I can even stomach a parade.

This reminds me of a random John McCain video.  I have work to do now.  Enjoy.

Conan Presents John McCain’s Deepest, Darkest Secrets