Citation: Synaptic_Destroyer. "Tastes Like Tinfoil, Gives Me Weird Dreams: An Experience with Zopiclone & Cannabis (exp83220)". Erowid.org. Jul 27, 2010. erowid.org/exp/83220
I was first prescribed Zopiclone after the doctor was through with the whole 'sleep hygiene' routine, that they do in the UK to try and avoid giving out sedative-hypnotics. I was given a green prescription slip to take to the chemist (drugstore), and came away with a foil strip of 14 small, white pills. I was unsure of what to expect; I had smoked pot for quite some time before I was prescribed this drug, and I knew that whilst pot isn't particularly dangerous OR physically addicting, this is not the case with prescription sedatives. My mum works with mental health, and has spoken of people in protracted benzodiazepine withdrawal. So naturally, I was very wary of taking my sleeping pills.
I have always had trouble controlling my racing torrent of thought, especially at night for some reason. I spent a large chunk of my education in special ed, not because my brain doesn't work, but rather because it works TOO efficiently, in my case. But anyway, at the time I was on what we Asperger victims call a 'roll' or a 'meltdown' - I just COULD NOT settle down and stop thinking. So, I got myself a glass of milk, and washed down a pill. It was around 9PM.
Fifteen minutes later, I got my first indication of having taken zopiclone, the last thing I was expecting - a strange, thin, sour and metallic tang rising up the back of my throat and hovering around my tonsils. It took me another ten minutes to feel properly drowsy, by which time that bitterness had intensified, and now masked anything that I ate - not that I felt like eating. I felt sort of floppy and slightly drunk, but without the nausea. Comfortable, warm and relaxed - try as I did, I could not get any thoughts to work at all. Relieved that I had at last found a pill that worked, I decided that there was no point in staying awake, and went straight to bed. I don't remember much else - just lying there for a few minutes, feeling that same strange, cosy warm indifference eclipse me, and then I woke up the next day with a slightly fuzzy head, and a mouth that tasted of metal for much of the next day.
I wasn't convinced that I had found a 'miracle cure', or anything. In truth, where my unfortunate brain condition is concerned, I did and still do consider cannabis to be if not a miracle, then the next best thing to one, where combating rogue brainwaves is concerned. And I knew from the beginning that zopiclone is potentially dangerous - I looked it up, and found out that it partly works like benzodiazepines (Valium, Xanax etc.) but also has some similarities with barbiturates, a group of sedatives notorious for producing uncontrollable addiction, erratic behaviour, and mucho overdosage. So naturally I was worried, and spoke to my shrink.
He said that if I took my sleeping pills no more than one out of every three nights, then I shouldn't develop a problem. He explained that whilst benzos and nonbenzodiazepines/Z-drugs (things like zopiclone, zolpidem) ARE justly demonised, their effectiveness as anxiety-relievers and sleep-aids can't be disputed, and that if I was cautious, these things could just be a life-saver.
So, I continued in this way. Every three to five nights, I would swallow my small, round flat white tablet with a warm drink, and smoke a joint whilst I waited for it to work. Thirty to sixty minutes later, I would be out for the count, flat on my back, that nasty metallic tang rising up my throat, and then abruptly descend into deep sleep. It was after around the third or fourth dosing, that I started to notice the way this stuff interferes with dreams.
I have always had strange, almost cryptic dreams. But zopiclone added a new, multi-dimensional perspective to these dreams; it made them seem all the more real, as though I had stepped out of one life and into another. I got to engage Yossarian (Catch-22) in spiritual discussion on the beaches of Normandy. I got to witness cows eating one another alive, as I walked with a friend between Chester and Wrexham. I got to kiss the guy of my dreams on the beaches of Coney Island, even as NYC was destroyed all around me in an air-raid. I was disturbed to discover that almost all of my apocalyptic, zopiclone-induced dreams carried an ironic romantic overtone.
I am not disputing the efficacity of zopiclone for one minute. As a sleep aid, I can't fault it. It seems to have little to no recreational potential for me (although my friend, who has abused it in much higher levels than myself, claims that it is 'fun'); it doesn't induce a 'high' - more of a full-body slump - and staying awake i.e. 'fighting' the effect for the 'buzz', doesn't seem to work with zopiclone; if I don't go to sleep, I just feel slightly light-headed, uncoordinated, sort of drunk without the happy feeling. As a recreational candidate, zopiclone is pretty useless, in my opinion. It's boring, and the addiction potential just isn't worth it. As a purely therapeutic means of ameliorating nervous insomnia, however, in my opinion Zopiclone is a chemically-engineered godsend. It may have its annoying side-effects, but its effectiveness at temporarily relieving insomnia can't really be disputed.
Stay strong, play it safe. Always look before you leap, at least where drugs are concerned. Peace out, comrades.
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