Medicated Success

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Nicholas is a seventeen year old boy who suffers from Maladaptive Daydreaming. Consequently his parents pressure him into taking medication to help him focus, something that brings about mixed emotions.


The orange would be warm but not unkempt to the eye. The leaves would be transparent sometimes and then solid green, orange and red. It would be a rainbow of the deciduous, a testimony to the fall and the fall of sunshine but not quite. The trees would be inviting and wind and curve like an old friend in position for embrace. And those near the trees in the long grass with orange would be nice and not understand regret or sadness. ‘What are these foreign words’ they would say and I’d laugh it off saying ‘it’s not important anyway’. The children would wear old fashioned clothes but would have the knowledge of someone knowledgeable. We’d get lost in the orange grass and the succulent honey beaming down. The sky would say ‘it’s okay’ and the sun caress our hair. The only thing consumed would be knowledge but good knowledge, knowledge that makes people excited and even more wonderful. The children would wear bonnets and make daisy chains and soon enough I’d be one of them. We’d sit around singing and lying in the grass; a beautiful orange sweet haven for those lost. There would not be subjects or time for different emotions as we would all be children trapped in a willing bliss brought on by the orange obliviousness of the timeless haven. Books would not be divulged as they take up the time used for happiness, nor would the children understand the characters feelings. The haven would be small and the trees surrounding high and cramped together so it was like a giant hug infinitely impeding down. Although it would not hinder us as no one would want to leave and they wouldn’t have to ever. There’s still a little sun though, a testimony to there being maybe a little bit more out there. Not enough to bring on questioning though. The children would never sleep, nor would there be darkness. The surroundings would not be surroundings anymore just absorptions of what was created by the senses. The environment is what the children are and they will continue to exist as one.

To be able to leave reality so easy is a curse and a lie. It is a curse because you always dream and always hope for more. You have experienced the best of everything only to know in the back of your mind that it was not real. It is a lie as the things you see, you believe in, are not the truth and the truth is more important than ever when living in this world. Memories make you whole and who you are. But to have memories which may not even be real does not help. You look back on yourself and think ‘did that moment really happen?’ Maladaptive Daydreaming. The condition itself is controversial, a name for something that is a part of me. It isn’t harmful, it won’t kill me. Everything else will though. I wonder how cancer patients feel, knowing that a part of them is killing them and it has a name. There is a name for something spreading in you that is seeping the life out of you. Do they look in the mirror and see it? See it inside them? Maybe the life ebbing away isn’t so obvious. But why then can I see it slipping away?

I take medication. I take medication to stop my mind from wandering; I take it to focus on the dry work laid before me most days. I take it because my parents make me. Satisfaction spreads over my parents with every test or assignment brought home. But it feels fake. You look at those marks and the answers and the scores and you just think I wouldn’t have done as well if I wasn’t on the medication. To me it is cheating, maybe others at school have it harder than me but don’t have a name for whatever they are suffering from, it’s an unfair advantage which I unwillingly divulge in. The days where I manage to dodge the medication consumption are the best days, because then I can feel something real. Although the fantasies shroud my vision there is still something through the fog I can grasp on to and that’s the closest to reality I can get in either situation. A medicated happiness isn’t happiness at all and I’d rather be worrying about my homework than worrying about why I can’t feel genuine.  Hence why I’m actually in a classroom, but it feels like I’m just in my head.

The shaking in my hands became worse and the desire to tap almost unbearable. Rapidly I paced up and down the hall trying to catch up with my sanity. They say the maladaptive daydreaming has to do with your childhood. ‘They’ being a collective term for the experts of this field. I don’t trust experts. I don’t feel like they do much to benefit those suffering from different pains and mental trauma. They’re these cold people at the top of the food chain, too high up to see, but still trusted because of their position. I hate the naming of these problems though. Maybe it wouldn’t seem as bad if you didn’t think the problems were an actual problem, just an undesirable personality trait. There’d be more hope that you could overcome it, less worry about fixing it so you can become the perfect human being. Then I wouldn’t think so much of the daydreams of people in my classroom turning into birds and flying around the room tweeting songs of joy, I wouldn’t think much of my bedroom becoming an ocean of words. Nothing would be as concerning because I would be under an ignorant bliss where it would just be considered a part of life. We make our own problems out of nothing.

Visual Arts is the one class where my imagination can be released to its full potential and even encouraged. My closest friend was next to me chattering away, and all I could do was smile and nod because that’s all I’m really capable of when it comes to friendships like that. I just feel overpowered and scared to say my opinion, like if I annoy someone it’s the end of the world. I was the best in the class needless to say, followed by a girl with messy hair and a weird, frantic look in her eye that I only talked to occasionally. The paintings, all stuck on the wall in a rather amateur fashion, I feel, reflects her personality. I feel as the creator of some form of work, we aim to make it our own special note on some experience or emotion, our own way of getting some form of help or tell something to someone without actually telling them. You just keep creating until you get rich and then can pay to fix yourself, or get to the point where you’re so fed up the works become utter nonsense and you do something crazy. I’d like to think I’m not in the crazy realm yet.

Scanning the room, I read the students faces and saw the genuine hatred in them. I attend the School for Filthy Rich and Disgusting People. It’s horrible to watch these people with so much potential and opportunities waste their lives away because they believe it is too hard. That’s what happens in society, people are fed thoughts that make them feel special to have it ‘worse’ than everyone else. They crave the pity, the help just because someone who is an ‘expert’ has told them they need it. That’s the disgusting truth and no fantasy or medication will ever cover it up. Humans want to feel special, like they have it harder, tougher and need help. Then those that genuinely do need the help can’t get it, because we’re all too busy looking at our own problems to even care. Our world is going to become controlled by this generation. It was at that moment that I decided to never take my medication again.

Walking home with the girl with messy hair a couple of paces behind me, there were always pine trees surrounding me. The pine trees were my oldest friend bending down to greet me. Rays play like the waves bobbing up and down with the sway of the wind. Like soldiers prepared for battle in lines, for the impending massacre. Then the enemy would come with chainsaws and bored faces with the knowledge of their guaranteed victory. Gushes of wind bring the pine trees alive, swaying frantically but never leaving their post, for their loyalty lies there. Then the massacre starts with every tree grown old enough to be considered useful cut down as their younger counterparts witness their future. They never fall far from where they stand and that’s what gets me. We need people like that in the world. Stubborn enough to not let go. Then the throbbing began a perpetual beat of pain to which I tapped my foot in time to.

Home is just a word for the place I inhabit; home is the mental clinic for my family. I am an only child, expected to be everything at once by my parents. They followed what they were told by those who seemed to know what to do, and they believed every word they fed into their mouths. Equally bad as each other, one compensating for the other if one was to become too lenient. They didn’t abuse me; they were great carers in the sense that they met my needs. They were just those types of people though that wanted me to be good at everything and have the smartest child around. Sure, I wanted to be smart but the medication was cheating. You hear the stories of parents with kids who have ADHD. They’re basically forced into giving their kids medication, except it’s the other way around with our family. The daydreams just help compensate for the life I wanted. The doctor’s face every time we go back for another round of the stupid drugs is surprised and he always asks if we’re sure we want more. I’m not sure, I’m never sure about anything anymore but my parents continue to hold their certainty on the matter.

My mother turned to look at me through the steam of the fresh tea she had just made. Everything was normal, except the corner of her eyes start to crinkle as she stared at me. 
‘You didn’t take your medication.’ The quiet, innocent voice hid everything lethal inside her.
‘There wasn’t much on today mum, I work better in VA without it anyway.’ Uneasiness crept through the room and my mind spiralled out of control. She always did this, I could go the day without the medication if I was careful enough to avoid her in the morning but every afternoon she waited, ready to pounce if I hadn’t taken it. Sometimes I think I’ve even seen her count how many tablets were left; causing me to think maybe she needed medication of her own.
‘Okay, but you need to take them now Nicholas, they’re a great help to you.’ No, no they aren’t. They were a hindrance, a disgusting way to plug up potential and creativity. She was begging now, but I knew what her next tactic would be.
‘No. I don’t need them, I don’t need your help or the doctor’s or some medication. I need people to understand, I need to know that you don’t just use this as a way to get me to work.’ She was furious; she hated any form of disobedience, a wild glint in her eye. Her arm now grabbing onto mine with an increasing force, squeezed. You do bad things when you’re angry that you don’t mean, so I hope that she didn’t mean what she did. All I know is that I am incredibly weak and that my parents aren’t abusive. That’s all I want to say about that because dwelling on the things she said and did will do nothing but sadden my already dreary view on family.

Then I ran, not for the sake of running away from home, but running away from the lifestyle I was forced to live. It wasn’t like those teens who think they have it bad when they’re parents won’t buy them something because they need it to be happy, not like those attention seeking kids who feel like no one loved them. My parents love me; they just do things sometimes that don’t show that. Sometimes those moments add up and I can’t take it anymore and then the medication is like don’t worry about it now but maybe I should be worrying about it, maybe I do need to escape for a little while. All I knew was that I was running in time to the pounding in my head and full on the drugs I loathed.

Sometimes when I was little I’d just cover one of my ears when I was tired to see what it would feel like. I wasn’t there. The voices were distant and took a while to process, like there was a barrier between us and even if I reached out and touched them, I would not feel. That’s what life is like. You reach out, in the hope that someone will let you feel, only to disappoint you. So I sat on the curve of the road and covered my ear and watched the traffic and thought about what it would be like to walk into the traffic and then in that moment someone would finally care if I died. Then the homework wouldn’t seem like an issue at all, I wouldn’t always be escaping from the stress through the fantasies, I wouldn’t need to worry about life. But the lights of the cars were too bright and the wind too nice and the idea of traumatising someone too unappealing. And when people get mad they do things they don’t mean and I was mad so maybe I didn’t mean suicide. And I figured I was still in the process of writing my note and it definitely wasn’t one on death. When you get to the core of it I think we all want some happiness, whatever that is. The cheap thrills give you cheap moments, but the genuine sunshine feeling in your stomach is something that comes from more than just an object. You hear the people in class planning their next gathering where they get drunk, you hear them pressure your friends and it makes me sick. Maybe they get some form of a sunshine feeling for a little bit, but that’s just the alcohol and in the morning they get a splitting headache. What you are given you have taken away. And that’s a principle of life, so maybe having experiences is better than having objects and maybe holding someone is better than having sex with them and maybe smiling is better than complaining. It was getting pretty dark but I had no intention of going home, but the fog in my mind was quite prominent so I knew there was no escape into some extreme fantasy, since having just been force fed quite a few tablets.

So I stumbled through the dark and questioned the lack of street lights and started to wonder whether she’d stuffed too much medication in my mouth when she became furious. That was the problem with my mother and that was the problem with nearly everyone. Change is bad, disobedience a disgrace and she just shows her reaction more than others. She was relying on me to get somewhere and eradicating my ability to escape even for a little bit. You here about those parents that hit their kids, you see the bruises and the weary faces, but my mother isn’t an abuser, she just wants me to do well even if it involves unnecessary drugs. Of course, I can say that I hate the daydreaming all I like but that can’t limit it and sometimes you just need to get out of the world and look on from a different perspective. I analyse, I evaluate, I can look on past situations and see what I did wrong, I can create scenarios, I can see the wonders of the world, and I can see the wonders of my world.

And before I knew it I’d turned up on her doorstep and had knocked on her door because what did I even have to lose anymore. I didn’t think I could deal with the constant self-centred chat, I didn’t think I could deal with anything. So the weird hair put in a bun was comforting, the track pants and jumper inviting and the warm light inside welcoming. Confusion streaked across her face followed by a quiet ‘come in’. And I just burst into tears. And I asked if I could vomit into something, which obviously isn’t the best way to act when you are a guest but I needed to get the filthy fog out of me and I needed to know that I was clean inside and there wasn’t some being inside me pulling my strings and making me focus on everything at once.

She led me to the bathroom and left me alone for a while so I could sort my thoughts out and just gain composure. I cleansed myself from the fog, and it was disgusting but with every bit leaving my body I felt whole and I felt like I might have a future. I didn’t need to worry about my happiness, it was a choice. It was something I could control, something that made it seem okay when the problems built up and the anxiety crawled back in. I decided there was only so much I could do and tomorrow would be hard and I’d most likely have major issues to come home to. Maybe I wouldn’t even leave, because right now I could smell the inviting aroma of an Earl Grey tea waiting for me, and the calm crept over me. She’d already given me what I’d always needed and that was something that I could feel. I just walked over and hugged her and said thankyou.

And she held me like I was fragile and like I was her small segment of the world. It wasn’t some romantic expression of love; we weren’t trying to be like those couples you see on the streets, at school, everywhere. That was disgustingly cliché. We were holding onto the pieces that were us, and hoping maybe somehow our clinging hands would keep it together. Because when you find someone like you, it’s hard not to question reality and think do they really exist.  And that’s all that I have to say about that moment because sometimes less words are better than more to describe something so pure and right.

Submitted: December 03, 2012

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