• martinwrbaker


It’s time to write things down and talk into a mic, which is a fond compulsion of mine that occurs for reasons I can’t be bothered to explain right now, I can however, evidently be bothered to do this thing, and off the back of that point I’d like to ask what else would I do in a time and place like I’m currently in? That isn’t rhetorical, if there’s viable alternatives that’s more beneficial for myself and anyone else I’m open to hearing them.

And because it’s the right side of midday I’m having a more optimistic inclination in reflecting on this journaling routine I’ve pursued in evolving forms over the years, becoming a lot more dialled in in recent times, so for better and worse the process has inevitably gained me some transferable skill in communicating a bit more succinctly, though I don’t much care for the effect the jaw appliance has had on the sound of my voice lately, that aside I feel like some momentum has been established and there may come a time where I can do something else with all that.

In the ever expanding interim where I await the agency of living with heavily fluctuating psychical pains, I’ll be dragging this disguised attempt of seeking validation by recording my anticipation for what’s awaiting me today.

Im on my way to London, for the first meeting with my orthodontist for over three months, it isn’t the kind of appointment I would hope it to be, but it’s non the less a greatly needed chance to get his input on how things are going. I don’t know how close I am to getting this appliance out, but I am close to getting an accurate forecast on the matter, and simply having a better idea for what I’m in for will be highly appreciated.

At the time of writing this new paragraph, I’ve just switched trains and so have been idolling slightly, having lots of spontaneous thoughts, each getting disrupted by the next. Though I’ve probably already commented before that the appliance does often play strange games with my mental health, and I don’t think the whole mental and psychical distinction we’re supposed to make is very constructive, especially when it ones the something so fundamental as head pain and spinal alignment, it seems worth repeating that imbalance is imbalance, though I feel I was able to bypass the deeper psychological grievances during the first two months of the appliance purely on the optimistic and highly inaccuracy expectation it’d be over far sooner. The most recent sense of emotional hopelessness stems partly from an overall unknowing, uncertainty that is fine in isolated chunks, but long term pushes me nearer toward some form of internal breakdown. Especially when the chances are rare to try and articulate all this.

My recent dependence on mild anti depressant remedies like tyrosine, tryptophan, St. John’s wort and 5htp (not all at the same time) signifies to me, with as much breath work and cold therapy I can motivate myself to do, that everything feels like a biochemical tightrope walk, but I do wonder, if any of the long preexisting negative thoughts I’ve been having, where not long overdue a fix anyway via addressing the basic environmental aspects that tend to determine a lot of our bad mental health conditions anyway. But paradoxically maybe, appropriately addressing that stuff is compromised by the very process that’s amplifying the issues.

For instance, socialising, and any positive interactions with other people does obviously provide a huge wellbeing upgrade for most of us. But my currant condition fluctuates in such a way that I can in the space of minutes go from chatty to irritable and lethargic, and ultimately needing personal space to deal with the pain.

There’s no obvious solution, but speaking of solutions, I have non the less reflected a little deeper on that just now as I’ve had my appointment and the news is a mixed bag. I’m not yet decided on what to make of it as a whole but it is still an upgrade to have had the professional input at this stage. The less positive developments have gotten me to reasses how I can live with pain for the foreseeable future.

The pain relief drugs have been an asset without too much side effects, but the earlier conversation has prompted me to be more imaginative in how to work around this problem. The pain management regime I’ve become dependent on came about on an assumption this whole process wouldn’t take so fucking long. But now I’m exploring the prospect of approaching this for a different angle. The biggest thought hanging over me is will I be able to have a few drinks this summer? Every time I had more than a one beer this entire year, my stomach aches and my head starts pounding as if bypassing the whole getting drunk phase, and going straight into a really bad hangover.

I’m not a huge drinker, but 7 months being involuntarily sober is getting to me. So what can I do? Find a way to taper off the Kratom as that painkiller does not mix well with alcohol, but make no mistake that’s not the only reason alcohol has been off the menu. Even without other drugs in my system I’ve not been able to stomach it, there are clinical explanations for this, related to the jaw treatment, but I’m out of my depth if I attempted to explain it.

This is the bit where I pick up from where I left off, a few days have past since I last wrote, and I shan’t add much more, but I can certainly give a valid update. I spent a lot of time evaluating my options on the train home. The fundamental difference I’ve been trialing the past few days is to swap my usual afternoon kratom dose for what biohackers would call a stack. My one being tryptophan, magnesium, and paracetamol or CBD oil. Tryptophan is an amino acid that’s often used to treat mild depression, I’ve used it before at bedtime for better sleep, and I mentioned it briefly earlier, but in this application it improves my mood slightly, which in turn helps regulate pain, of any emotional or psychical kind, magnesium is just a great all round mineral that seems too potentate just about every other thing under the sun, and the mild pain killers to cover all corners. This seems to give me enough of a boost to get by in the afternoons, especially at work, all though it has become abundantly clear in reflection that sitting at that desk at work has been a big factor in pain over later months, to the point I’d been beginning to take stronger pain killers earlier in the day just to function at work, they did make me spaced out but that was still an easier condition to work in than pounding headaches and neck pain.

I should stress, kratom is a wonderful asset for temporary pain relief, and other such applications, and I would consider it much safer than synthetic prescription medication or other drugs of a similar effect. But almost 7 months of daily use has its set backs. Now however, where as before kratom was the norm and tryptophan was the exception, it is now the other way around, daily use of tryptophan is a lot more sustainable as it is instead a dietary supplement, though very effect when used right, and has further potential benefits if your deficient in serotonin, and this whole experience has most probably contributed to a lack of that in my system. Man I have felt exceptionally bleak at points this year, so the improved seratonine production has been welcome, and its enabled me to incorporate other healthy habits.

So anyway, some improvements to my quality of life generally now I’ve taken the time to practically evaluate, the measures I had been taking, (although most of which healthy) weren’t entirely suited to long term pain management, but I persisted over many months on the assumption it wouldn’t be much longer. That whole: ‘just a few more fucking weeks of this shit” mentality, would have served fine for a month or two, had I known this would take over half a year, I’d have gotten more expert advise on the pain management back in January.

So that almost concludes my entry, I have been reintegrating aspects of normal life, though I’ve tested my limits over recent days what with family gatherings and celebrations, my tolerance to alcohol seems better, though only in as much as I can have two drinks rather than one before feeling sick. I am also finding somewhat more energy at hand, though over all I sense I’m still running on a dialled back version of my whole self. So how these improvements inform my professional practise, still for now remains to be seen. But I must remain thankful non the less, that things are noticeably less shit. Also, I’ll be making some stuff and setting up a shop soonish, so that’s convenient, Bye now

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For whom it might ever be of relevance, my Artist Journal entires are now kept on my instagram/Facebook videos section, and the usual podcast platforms. Under either 'Martin Baker Art' or 'Passive Cha