Ah yes, 21 pills each day. So many in fact that I've had to invest in one of those trays I had previously thought the product of choice of the mentally enfeebled - which, of course, to some extent is me to a t! Oh, yes.
So, on Thursday I took my lovely big bag from the pharmacy and dumped it all in to the four slots for each day. It would make a cracking percussion instrument, great for samba if anyone's setting up a Latin troupe in Cardiff shout me man.
Sadly, it doesn't go beep at the appointed hour. Writing this reminded me to go and check where I stood today and I missed two so I've just had a big swallow.
This is what I take every day and why. Four Thiamine, remember that from the cereal packaging of your youth? Well, I do. Apparently it's destroyed by alcohol so if you want to soak your kiddies' Cocopops in gin you'll at least be doing a not half bad thing. Strong vitamin B, two four times a day, for similar reasons. Six Acamprosate or Campral tablets; these are supposed to reduce cravings but the medical technicalities of it (and everything else to be honest) are beyond me, stick it in Google and you'll be deluged with discussion on its use and even the ethics of using it. One Antabuse or Disulfiram tablet: this is the big one, the deterrent, the chemical cosh and one which the professionals drink to. The idea in short is; you drink, you're seriously ill.
I was a bit chary about Antabuse at first. I've used it in a previous suicide attempt plan and knowing how low my mood can go I was wary of having access to a guaranteed self harmer like that. Also, in hospital, it turned out that every damn cream, lotion and unguent I used to treat my eczema contained alcohol. I was offered another drug called Naltrexone which works by making alcohol impotent, you can't get drunk it, therefore drinking it is pointless.
However, in the end, and I think to my relief too (a subconscious part of me didn't want something 100% effective I think), alternatives were found for my eczema treatments (although since leaving hospital - where my skin became as a lovely nectarine in its smoothosity and loveliness; it was like listening to Al Green singing masses by William Byrd to look at my skin - it's flared badly again) and I am now an antabuser.
It's not part of my 21 tablets a day in reality because I've decided to have my intake supervised. This shouldn't really be necessary but I relished the chance for another appointment, another reason to leave the house and get into some sort of routine of obligation and timetabling. So, each Monday, Wednesday and Friday I trot off down to the Community Addiction Unit. There I am breathalysed to ensure I'm not about to poison myself and take two pills or three on Fridays.
Of course, me being me, I mislaid my tablets on Friday so didn't go and wasn't able to take them until today when they turned up, not in the traditional last place I looked but rather the first place I'd looked but just not seen them. D'oh!