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...over-educated and under-experienced, or so they say...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Close Quarters With Brain Zaps

You walk into the elevator in the downtown skyscraper.    Another stranger steps into the elevator with you.  You push the 10th floor button and ask the stranger which floor she needs.  She tells you 10, the door closes, and what should be merely seconds feels like the longest moment of your elevator experience thus far.

You stand on the opposite side of the elevator, pretending that this is an acceptable distance between you and this other person.  Close quarters with strangers should be quick and painless.  But suddenly this lady twitches a bit and let's out a quiet "shit!"  You turn your eyes in her direction but say nothing.  A few seconds later she does it again.  You finally ask if she's okay and she responds with something like, "Oh, I stopped taking my Lexapro and it's giving me the brain zaps."

You're standing there looking at her thinking, "this is normal casual elevator talk, right?  I mean, everyone talks about their withdrawals from anti-depressants in the elevator.  No big deal..." and then you can't help yourself.  You say, "Brain zaps?"  She says, "It's like these little lightening bolts go off inside my head.  They literally shock me.  It's been happening all day."

At this point you're asking yourself and The Universe how it is that you ended up in the elevator with this person, but you are so used to strange happenings you go ahead and say, "Did your doctor tell you to stop taking the Lexapro?"  She says, "No, I just decided I didn't need it any more so I stopped taking it and... ah!  There it goes again!"

Looking at the lights at the top of the elevator panel, you're praying that 10 shows up right about now, but still you say, "Obviously, we don't know each other very well, but I think you may want to take one of those pills today and then ask your doctor the best way to come down from it.  Those pills adjust the chemical makeup of your brain, which is basically a thunderstorm of activity anyway, and now you've had three brain zaps between the 1st and 10th floor.  Doesn't seem good to me.  If you can't play it off in here, you're not going to do very well today."

This was a rather bold statement for you to make to a stranger in an elevator, but brain zaps in close quarters can be a moment where bold statements may very well be supported.  The bell finally dings, the door opens to the 10th floor, the stranger looks at you and says, "I guess you may be right.  Do you think it'll stop if I take the pill?"  You walk out onto the floor and say, "I know nothing of brain zaps, other than they can't be good."  You walk down the hall to the conference room, reflecting on how much you hate elevators and praying this lady isn't coming to the same meeting as you.

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