Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The Capsules of Life

Does it strike you as sexist that insurance companies cover Viagra and other products that help men to have an adequate sex life, but it doesn’t cover birth control pills or any female contraceptives to prevent pregnancy? And if you think that's not sexist, how would you explain it. Is it possible that insurance companies are really human and they just want the products they pay for to result in a good time. It is not my job to try to explain how insurance companies make decisions, but I bet that most of the people making them, have either a penis or penis envy.

And speaking of medication, which we weren’t – exactly, but it’s such a contemporary and pithy subject that we should. There is hardly anyone I talk to or about who isn’t medicated in some way. Most of the people I know take a combination of little pills and some like calcium, big enough to choke a horse. Among the assorted goodies are often vitamins to supplement those things that we can’t eat, because they are unavailable or bad for us. For example, we take fish oil capsules because the fish sold in stores is “farm raised” and that is, supposedly, like eating poison. Or we take vitamin D because we don’t get enough sun. And we don’t get enough sun because if we do we’ll get skin cancer.

We take pills to cure ills, and tablets to prevent infections, headaches, and babies. So with all this medication available, why is it that so many friends are dying so young – many from cancer and many from heartache. My guess is that it’s either the environment, whatever we’re ingesting, or our daily routine. I guess we should be eating organic, absolutely stop breathing any air, and stay away from people who are aggravating. It doesn’t make sense. Our parents are living longer than we are and throughout their lives they never exercised and additionally, ate tremendous amounts of butter, white flour, meats with all kinds of crap, and heavy cream. That would be my kind of diet if I weren’t consumed with being OK –just OK.

The most amazing thing, however, is the number of people who are on “happy” or “crazy” pills –some prefer to call them anti-depressants. If the 60’s were the Age of Aquarius, the late 90’s and early 2000’s are the age of much Weariness or Wariness. Yes, we have become apathetic, disillusioned and suspicious. Yech!!! Not a particularly appealing way to live. In the past, when we greeted our friends we said “How are you?” Now we say, “What’s the dosage you’re on?” Where once our conversations revolved around jobs, or tennis, or restaurants, now they are about symptoms and consequences.

What is it about the way we are living today that makes us yearn for the “Leave it to Beaver” or “Ozzie and Harriett” days. How did everything get so stressful? Do we yearn for a simpler time? Is there an absence of role models who don’t try to do everything. Is the music we listen to over complicated? Is the television we watch over stimulating? Have we become a society of people who chose the internet over more comforting interpersonal relationships? Are we, in the sandwich generation, simply responsible for too many family members? Is there just too much information to digest in a single lifetime, or a single day -- and so we feel like we are failures or stupid?

The answer to these and many other questions is Yes. So what is there to do about all this turmoil? I don’t have an answer that is realistic or universal. I guess the best answer is to get your doctor to write a prescription for a magic pill that dulls the pain and eases the anxiety. I think I’m at .75mg maybe tomorrow I’ll up it to 100.

No comments: