New reality with Bipolar

I thought the book was finished, the Problem with the World, but it seems it wasn’t, so here I am again.

It’s a strange world I am now finding myself in. I think it is time to face I have bipolar. 

It all started just under three years ago when my husband left me, I went through what I now know was a manic phase. I lived on nervous energy, barely able to take in the ampler of what had just happened, I stopped eating, stopped sleeping and my mind took me to places I had never been before. This led to my first psychosis.

I became utterly disconnected from reality, I sometimes wonder if it was my mind’s way to cope with the situation. This led to my first hospitalisation, in Canada, from where I was discharged too quickly – “you can’t treat the place like a hotel” were the words of the psychiatrist who saw me then before discharging me some 10 days after I had been admitted.

I was discharged with only 24 hours’ worth of medication and literally homeless. My husband brought all my stuff and my dog to me at the gates of the hospital, took me to a hire car company and off he went.

I spent a few days road tripping my way down the Rockies in Alberta making my way down to beautiful Waterton where I experienced my second psychosis. Again, I was hospitalised, two weeks later as I was making good progress on medication, I was discharged, took a flight to Paris where I met with my dad for a few days so he could see how I was, then started my trek back to the UK where I had to wait a while for the tenant who occupied my house to move out – she was waiting for council accommodation and had refused to move out until she got it, despite me following the proper channels. She wanted me to evict her to force the council to provide her with accommodation but I couldn’t afford to do that. 

Eventually though, a week or so after my return to the UK, she found somewhere to live and I was able to move back.

Still on medication, I suffered a deep depression. The first in my life. It was so deep I wanted to die. The presence of my dog actually prevented this to happen. I couldn’t find a way to “do away” with myself whilst still ensuring his safety. “If I die, who will look after him, who will find him?” I was living in a town where I was virtually a stranger. Who would notice me not being around and check on me? No-one.

Image

Tattoo I got to remind myself of my boy Frodo (F for frodo) strategically placed

as his presence in my life prevented me from doing the unthinkable 

 

I eventually got myself to the doctors and begged him for medication. Up until then my doctor had refused and sent me to CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) instead. I saw a different doctor and he prescribed me a low dosage anti-depressant which did the trick.

The depression lifted and I started to enjoy life again. I joined a couple of dating sites and, after a year of mourning the loss of my husband and going through depression, I started dating again. Except I also started drinking again (I had stopped a couple of weeks after my husband left me). Bad move. But it enabled me to drop my barriers and fears and throw myself into dating. I saw a few guys, had a few inappropriate adventures, until I met the American guy and decided to give that a chance.

However, I was riddled with doubt about that relationship and sabotaged it every step of the way, using alcohol again to hide behind. I quit drinking in April last year and I started to feel high, very excited about life, free from the booze, I faced my issues head on, and it felt good. I let go of American guy mid August and a couple of weeks later suffered another psychosis. He “threw” in my face that I was bipolar, see this previous entry, and I thoroughly denied that was the case. I simply didn’t recognise myself in the symptoms he highlighted.

I recovered from that psychosis quite quickly and was back at work within a month. I was medicated again but decided I didn’t need to as after all, I wasn’t bipolar, so I stopped the meds again soon after.

You can see from my blog where I was at, the next manic episode I suffered was probably clear. I got deep into myself again and over excited about life. I decided to stop this blog before Christmas and started a new one in the New Year. It was going to be a daily entry blog. Writing it contributed to my manic episode as I would try and write an entry every day, sometimes writing it during the night after a few hours sleep.

Just before New Year, the American guy got back in touch with me and we met up again. I guess we had some sorts of friends with benefits arrangement, except I fell in love with him during a two week blissful period we experienced. I was high, happy to be back with him, everything was going grand until I realised he wasn’t serious about us. It was a Sunday. I left his house and started crying on the way home. Things after that went from bad to worse between us and I suffered another psychosis a week later, on February 5th.

This time I was in hospital for 6 weeks as I was battling with the psychiatrist over the meds he wanted me to take. Eventually I got discharged, I am not too sure why, and a month on, here I am.

Three psychosis in 3 years makes me bipolar in the medical profession’s eyes. I have to accept something is definitely off balance with me.

Right now, I seem to be going through a down phase. It started some three weeks ago when I realised I wouldn’t be allowed back at work just yet. The work doctor finally managed to convince me to go on meds. He was quite clear: “do you want another episode?”. Well no. Well yes truth be told because those episodes take me to places I obviously need to go (issues I haven’t yet deal with in my soul) but I can’t lead a “normal” life if I carry on experiencing those episodes. I can’t go to work for starters and no work means no money, means no roof over my head means no life. I have also had my driving licence revoked for three months so I am now finding myself sort of prisoner in my own home.

I am now taking mood stabilisers and waiting to be allowed back at work.

When I think back over the past year, I can see I wasn’t “right”. 

The problem I have now is that I don’t know who I am. 23 years of drinking and smoking pot, three years off the pot and one year off the booze, during which I experienced two psychosis, I just don’t know what my normal is. It’s a struggle.

Every morning I wake up extremely low. I toss and turn in bed and dark thoughts invade me that I can’t chase. I get up, get dressed, and feel lost. Without work to keep me busy, I just don’t know what to do with myself, and every day is becoming tough to get through.

I have tried hard to find activities to get me out of the house though and manage to get through each day somehow.

I am reviving this blog in the hope it will give me my joie de vivre back….somehow….

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3 comments on “New reality with Bipolar

  1. I debated leaving this message, and finally decided to go for it.
    It’s good to see you accepting your diagnosis and the treatment /meds that go with it. I believe that you will find your joie de vivre in time. Be kind to yourself and try not to judge others. Live and let live.
    I was wondering about you and was glad to see your post in my inbox this morning.
    Take care, my friend. And, maybe it’s time to adopt another doggie friend? Walking with a dog is so therapeutic, as you know.

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