It has begun.

At first I thought I was going to eliminate caffeine before I attempted withdrawal. I figured (rightly) that I shouldn’t do both at once, because I should know exactly why I feel like crap. Then some reasonable friend asked me why I felt so inclined to torture myself, when I could simply cut down on caffeine until it didn’t make me want to claw at my face. I couldn’t argue with this logic.

As for the drugs: My original plan called for me to reduce my dosage by about 20 granules each week (there are 100 granules in each capsule). At the start of the week, I would open seven capsules, remove 1/5th of each, close them, and have the correct dosage all ready to go.

But I forgot that I am lazy, and not exacting, and easily distracted by the shiny things and happy voices on the television box. So, when faced with hundreds of teensy-tiny granules that like to roll and bounce all over the black paper I laid out, I became overwhelmed, and then sleepy, and finally I decided to go the less-scientific route. Each day, I would just toss out what looks to me like 20 granules. For the past week I’ve been tossing granules hither and yon, and so far, so good.

I was planning on taking fish oil while I was withdrawing, because someone on the Internets suggested it. But a health-expert friend told me that fish oil, which usually helps fight depression, can have the opposite effect when it's combined with an antidepressant. Not to mention, fish oils strike me as, well, icky. I don’t like the idea of someone juicing a salmon and dripping the oily runoff into capsules, which sit on a shelf for weeks or months. I’m sure I’m wrong about this.

It’s been a week on my reduced dosage, and I am having none of the unpleasant side effects. I’ve noticed little things, like a fascinating metallic sensation when I swallow, like the back of my throat is made of tin foil. And then we were at the Brooklyn Museum a few days ago, and I couldn’t shake the feeling that each piece of art I looked at had somehow taken residence in my brain. I mean, I could feel them, all knotted up in there, somewhere behind my eyes. This was strangely pleasant.

I know this makes no sense. I think everyone should go on a drug, just to go off of it and see what it does to you. By next week, I will have developed synaesthesia, and I will taste purple and hear fur and see impatience!