COLD TURKEY

The doctor said there must be several medication changes and
there will be serious withdrawal this time, but I will survive.
I am not an alcoholic, I have epilepsy, I have never used illegal drugs.
Why am I feeling fear at all these crawling creatures that feel like bugs?

Why do the freeway signs look like little men at all the one mile markers?
I cannot ask anyone else if they see them just in case they are not truly real.
Then I see trucks that look like castles and I have no choice but to ask.
Does anyone see the men on the side of the road? I use my smile as a mask.

I am met with blank stares of disbelief, obviously these sightings are only mine.
Then I see a large truck that looks just like a space ship, I can no longer pretend.
I insist that no one else is paying attention, or they too could see what I am seeing.
Looks of disapproval make me aware this nightmare is present only in my own being.

The words cold turkey or withdrawal will never mean quite the same thing to me again.
Cold turkey now means heart pains, pacing the floor, inability to sleep or eat and
hallucinations of the most hideous magnitude that words cannot begin to describe.
The doctor was right about one thing, regardless of the torment, I did survive.

Oh! I almost forgot to tell you the most important part of experiencing cold turkey.
It does not end today or tomorrow, the flashbacks continue to haunt me weeks later.
I have found it hard to function in normal situations without anger controlling me.
Cold turkey was a step toward new medication and the possibility to be seizure free.

by: Debbie M. Wilson
April 16, 1997

Read more of Debbie M. Wilson’s poetry at Debbie’s Place

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