One Pill Makes You Larger

 

One Pill Makes You Larger

The other night I was in the kitchen paying bills while my husband was in the living room watching TV.  I could hear what he was watching, a backdrop to my myriad tasks of writing checks (yes, some of us still do that), packing my lunch and prepping the coffee pot for the next day, and the noise that rose above all others — more than fast food commercials, money managers, travel ads and toys for kids — were the drugs.  Over and over, during every commercial break, drugs, drugs, drugs.  

We live in the truly miraculous age of modern science and today’s drugs have saved millions of people from all kinds of terrible ills, so drugs are a good thing, right?  

Well, the answer is complicated.  

We have an adverse relationship with pain.  We don’t want to feel it, know it, or even be in the same room with it.  We want a pill for the slightest inconvenience because life is stressful and we need to keep moving plus the lure of wonderland is strong.  As children, we were soothed by our parents, but as adults, we’ve learned to self-soothe:  alcohol, recreational drugs, excessive TV-watching, shopping, over-sleeping, over-exercising, whatever it takes to make the hurt go away.  

Do you feel stressed?  There’s a pill for that.  Can’t sleep?  There’s a pill for that.  Are you overweight because the nutritive value of the food being peddled in this country is terribly, abysmally, horrifically low and you have to supplement your diet just to have the strength to get out of bed in the morning?  We’ve got pills.  Do you have heartburn?  Headache? Arthritis?  Low energy?  Cancer?  Pills, pills, pills.  Do you need to stay awake to study, or drive or even watch TV?  We’ve got a zillion pills for that.  Are you depressed?  There are pills galore, everything to manage your symptoms with a host of side effects that could bring Attila the Hun to his knees, but nothing, sadly, to treat the actual disease.  

At the center of modern culture lies a pill-popping epidemic that has left us withering on the vine.  

Then there are the opiates.  Average Joe’s, moms and dads, college kids, seniors citizens, all addicted to opiates like Oxycontin, Vicodin, and heroin.  Oxy is a synthetic form of morphine, an opiate and the kind of drug they give cancer patients and the terminally ill.  If someone says morphine to me, I ask how long they have to live.  Heroin — also an opiate — usage among the middle class has been on the rise for years.  In Pennsylvania, the state where I live, 10 people die each day from substance abuse.  Shocking, right?  

There is no longer a profile when it comes to addictive drug behavior in America.

So how did we get here?  And why did it become okay to prescribe opiates by the bushel to people who weren’t dying when a little THC and some physical therapy may have done the trick?

Part of the problem is the hyperkinetic nature of our lives and our constant need to wind down from our days.  A nice glass of wine with dinner, especially after a long day, is a delight, but when it becomes a bottle, it’s the very definition of addiction:  a repeating behavior that one feels incapable of changing.  No finger-pointing here. I like wine as much as the next guy, but when does it become alcohol abuse?  And what happens when a bottle of wine is not enough to numb the pain?

Meanwhile, everything about the 21st century is amplified:  bigger, better, more expansive and expensive which would be great if you were talking about vacations, time with family, and maybe more time for self-discovery, but sadly, it means more work hours, more social demands, and more Netflix — I’ll admit an addiction — resulting in less time for sleep, rest, or focusing on our loved ones.  The frenetic pace of life combined with a panoply of choices and decisions leaves more to do with less time than ever.  

So what does that mean for the human spirit?  Are we out of explorable frontiers or impossibly large mountains to climb?  Of amazing achievements that test the boundaries of all we seem to know?  Or must we resort to drugs to get our thrills? Maybe it’s time to ask.

Meanwhile, the most beautifully self-aware part of us is our bodies.  If you have a headache, perhaps your body is telling you that you are denying some part of your individuality. Do you have a cold?  Maybe you’re working through some sadness.  Hips hurt?  Are you having trouble pivoting?  

Yet how can we ever remedy the underlying cause if we immediately numb the symptomatic result?  The answer is obviously, we can’t, and maybe we want it that way.

To my knowledge, they’ve yet to make a pill for self-awareness.  Sometimes a little pain, a little cough, a little soul-searching as to the cause of the symptom allows self-awareness to shine through.  What makes your Soul hum the way feeding your addiction does and how can you get more of it?  I invite you to look inward, to take a few quiet moments to peek into your Soul and listen for the answer.  One small step now may lead to an ultimately satisfying life.  

You owe it to yourself to try.

pam lazos 11.10.19

 

About Pam Lazos

writer, blogger, environmentally hopeful
This entry was posted in addiction, meditation, opiods and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

40 Responses to One Pill Makes You Larger

  1. Nadine says:

    I agree with this piece completely.

    “To my knowledge, they’ve yet to make a pill for self-awareness. Sometimes a little pain, a little cough, a little soul-searching as to the cause of the symptom allows self-awareness to shine through. What makes your Soul hum the way feeding your addiction does and how can you get more of it?”

    Well said. For me that is observing and feeling nature; writing or otherwise creating; and moments when I’m truly present — mindful — with my kids or others.

    Lovely article, Pam. Thanks so much for your earlier visit to my blog. Very inspiring comment. 💛

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Eliza says:

    I love this post.
    It’s true. It’s way easier to live checked out of life than tuned it. Although I’m so grateful when I’m present for often my mind just cuts me off and it’s not a choice (I hate the unreality that brings). Being present is the greatest gift a person can have. And yes, our bodies send us messages all the time. Either we can learn to listen to the messages our bodies and intuition are giving to us, or we can ignore them or take pills to solve the inconvenience of them.
    Keep being you. You’re awesome! I love reading your comments:)

    Love, light and glitter

    Liked by 1 person

  3. theburningheart says:

    Well, as someone who worked for a pharmaceutical conglomerate, for some years, long time ago, guess what?
    Its just business for them, and the very American notion of make more, and get bigger.
    About the Health issues related to the use of the drugs they produce, well there is a little legend, if any, about secondary effects, and counter indications, and use it as the physician prescribe. 😦
    So as everything in America, its just business as usual.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have just about worn out my mute button with those drug commercials!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ally Bean says:

    Brilliant observations and insightful conclusions here. I cringe at all those TV ads for meds, to a point where I tune them out entirely. I, too, wonder about the health of our society when abusing alcohol and opiates are the way people cope with living in this society. Less emphasis on doing, more emphasis of being might help us as a whole, but how can you sell that idea to people who are delighted by frenzy in their lives and chaos on their screens?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Resa says:

    Excellent commentary, Pam.
    I hate taking any pills. I need to know my pain, which is largely my bad back. (heating pad, Salon Pas) I do love my red wine, however, I love drawing and sewing and music more.
    Best thing I ever did for myself was become a vegetarian the day I left home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pam Lazos says:

      Red wine 🍷 cures a lot of ills, Resa. And those salon pas do take the edge off. My mother used them for arthritis and they really helped. Plus they don’t effect your liver because they’re topical. It’s less about being adverse to drugs and more about being adverse to side effects, I think. Also, I’m a wanna be vegetarian, but since I have to cook meat for the hubs I do eat some. Still veggies are so much easier and friendly. 🤓

      Like

  7. Ken Dowell says:

    Great post, Pam. I’m at the same time amazed and shocked at the range of pharmaceuticals available and how broadly they’re prescribed. The side effects statements usually scare me away. I’ve thus far been fortunate enough to not need anything except on a very short-term basis otherwise I might think differently.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. lindasschaub says:

    This was an excellent read Pam … a pill is not the answer to everything, but in our time-crunched society, it is easier to take a pill, cure what ails you now and worry about the consequences later. I’ll listen to the song, but I saw the title and it’s already an ear worm without the music … fancy that!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Mick Canning says:

    Ooh, White Rabbit! had to listen to that again!

    I’m not a fan of pills, despite having to take them for blood pressure. I tend to think if I get a pain I’m not used to getting, it seems better to try and sort out the problem rather than mask it.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Susan Scott says:

    I get this Pam … my retired medical husband says how when he took a history of patients that by far the majority were on antidepressives and the like. I also recall being amazed when a good girlfriend of mine would always give her small sons some multi if they said eg ma, I’ve got a headache. Out would come the pain killer. In my book pain is a message – pay attention it, what is it saying ..Like Jacqui though I believe medicines are remarkable – but the danger is becoming reliant on them to the point of being unable too bear a little pain or discomfort.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Susan Scott says:

      I get this Pam … my retired medical husband says how when he took a history of patients that by far the majority were on antidepressives and the like. I also recall being amazed when a good girlfriend of mine would always give her small sons some muti if they said eg ma, I’ve got a headache. Out would come the pain killer. In my book pain is a message – pay attention it, what is it saying ..Like Jacqui though I believe medicines are remarkable – but the danger is becoming reliant on them to the point of being unable too bear a little pain or discomfort.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Pam Lazos says:

      And using the pain to figure out the riddle that your body is setting before you. I would not prefer to live a hundred years ago before drugs were available, Susan, but I do think a little restraint is in order. 🤓

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Ken Dowell says:

    Good post Pam. I am similarly offended by the onslaught of medications that we are encouraged to take. And it always seems like taking one leads you to another to counteract the side effects of the first. And there is no end to that.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. A pill for self-awareness.
    Modern society needs that one.

    Hi Pam. I had no idea that so many people are dying each day from substance abuse. I’d have guessed that the number is lower. It’s a sad state of affairs.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I actually think a pill for self awareness now…. would be good x

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I agree with what you’re saying, Pam, but if you drill down to each individual, it’s a different story. It’s like everyone says education is broken in America but their school is fine. I’ll use myself as an example. I don’t take many pills–I hate them–but one of the new ones has tamped down violent headaches I’ve had for 35 years. That’s a huge victory. So, I guess I’m saying, that’s why drug companies make so many drugs–one will work for chronic illnesses like mine–and people and doctors need to be judicious about their use.

    Sigh. I’m really conflicted on this topic.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pam Lazos says:

      I hear you, Jacqui. My husband has MS and he would probably stopped walking long ago without the drugs that slow the progression of the disease. I’m not saying we shouldn’t use drugs — and you would have to pry ibuprofen from my cold, dead hands! 😂 — but we do have an over dependence on them as if a pill can make it all better when in fact it takes a lot more than that. Always appreciate your input!!🙏🤓😘

      Like

  15. Patrica Madlinger-Heller says:

    Received this in the mail today. Good read. Healthy living.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.