Blowing Out My Synapses

You don’t even get a photo today, that’s how out of touch with my creativity I’ve been lately: no photography, no fiction, much less any ideas at all. Every once in awhile something sparks and then dies back to nothing-hood. Did I have an idea, huh, what was that flitting across my synapses? It was unusual, it felt great, but where did that spark go?

Last week I had a routine physical. My doctor asked about my nutritional supplement intake. I mentioned my daily 100mg. of 5-HTP. If you don’t know, 5-HTP is a brain chemical that helps with seratonin production (layman’s definition only), and we all know that seratonin is a depression-factor thingamajig. But, I’ve heard many people say this supplement doesn’t do anything for them, or it makes them feel weird.

Not me. I’m a basketcase without my 5-HTP. Skip it for a few days, and I’m practically nonfunctional. So I asked my doctor what that was all about. She looked at me in that piercing way of hers, and said, “You blow out your synapses, yes?” to which I responded, “Yes?” and she said, “Yes. You think too much, always in your head, everything circling around and around — you’re blowing out your synapses.”


Basically I gotta get a life, learn how to relax and live more in the moment, give up a little control. This last befuddles me. If I were a control freak wouldn’t my home be spotless, wouldn’t my clothes be pet-hair free, wouldn’t I be freshly bathed everyday?

And here’s another question: If I’m overtaxing my brain so much, what exactly is it I’m thinking about? Besides day-job stuff, what’s taking up all the space, squashing out story ideas? Can someone please tell me?

Ah well, this was supposed to be a quick note to check in because I’m heading out of town. Please refer to my last blog post, to the comment left by Liz. Talk about coming at the perfect time! She’s a high-school buddy, and the last time I saw her was at a high-school reunion. I didn’t know she was reading my blog, which is cool. I’m about to head out to the McKenzie River — no wireless, sporadic cell phone service — for a few days. Feels like an experiment — no technology? — I might as well be going to the moon.

I vow that I shall do nothing except read, sleep, drink red wine, read, sleep, jump in the river, read, sleep, take walks, read, sleep, socialize…Wish me luck, though, because I already know that I’m going to pack a friend’s manuscript that I was supposed to have read months ago. I’m thinking I can get something done while I’m at the river, yes?

Me thinks this is exactly what my doctor meant about my poor brain, and exactly what she would not order…