I’m becoming manic slowly but surely. My therapist is trying to teach me about my cycle. She has it almost down to the month! Today I did a lot of housework, a sure sign that my energy level is rising. Hopefully it will last long enough to reverse the chaos I created when I was depressed. The good thing is that with medication the depression hardly goes to suicidal thoughts and the manic hardly goes to crisis-developing overspending. My life is pretty good right now considering where I was before. Now all I need is to become independently wealthy and hire someone to give me a monthly stipend so I don’t become bankrupt. And I would also need a housekeeper to keep the house tidy when I’m too down to handle it. Wait I would also need a nutritionist to make sure I don’t eat a bunch of ice cream for dinner more than once or twice a month. And someone to keep track of my hygiene (a home health aide?) so I don’t walk around looking and smelling like I stuck my finger in an electrical socket and fell into a garbage can filled with fish bones and banana peels. Well… maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit but I really don’t need to make my life more complicated than it is. I wouldn’t mind having the money but I know it would mean more stress to me because I would have a hard time staying on a budget and not firing the accountant for not giving in to my pleas for additional funds each month. Then I would become really depressed after I lost all of the money. Whatever. I’m not expecting those issues to turn up any time soon. But life is good when you’re manic.
This is crazy. My daughter goes back to school tomorrow and I can’t handle the pressure. You would think that I’m the one going back to school. I don’t want to freak her out (she is looking forward to starting at a new school) but I am terrified. What if I can’t get her to school on time? What if I can’t get the money for her school activities? I have this grandiose idea that we can do a series of fund raisers to get the money for her to do school activities.
Why is Social Security taking so long to decide? I don’t know if I can make it. My mind is racing and my head hurts. Why do I feel like such a failure? I got duped into getting my daughter’s hair done professionally (by my mother who was going to pay for it) and now she doesn’t want to pay for it. The result? I had to pay and now my phone is turned off, I don’t have gas money and now I have to go back and ask my mother for money anyway because I can’t get through the first week of school without her help. And she puts me down and reminds me about what a failure I am because I “WON’T” get a job like other people with mental illness. I have worked on and off from the time I was fifteen to forty-five years old. I tried for 30 years to make it work. I was unstable because of my depression and hospitalizations and mood swings. I didn’t know I was bipolar until I was 48 years old.
I struggle with getting my medication calibrated and controlling my mood swings. I engage in reckless, life threatening behaviors not because I think it’s cool, but because I have not yet been able to control my impulses. I can go from 0 to 10 on the anger scale in a matter of seconds and before I know it I have done something stupid. My mother is a major trigger for me because she is a major source of my financial help (and don’t get me wrong I am grateful for that) but it comes with a price that I definitely would not put myself through if I could maintain a job. I would rather starve to death or live on the street (because I tried living at a woman’s shelter – believe me the street is better). The only thing that makes going back to the abuse worth it is my daughter. I want her to have as normal a life as possible and while my illness sometimes (okay a lot of times) gets in the way of that, I know that she is happier with me than she would ever be with the rest of my unstable side of the family. I think that her father would provide her with a better routine but at this time she needs her mother who she trusts to talk with about any situation she is going through.
I have people who tell me all the time what a good mother I am and how pleasant and intelligent she is. Don’t get me wrong it takes a village, but I make the major decisions about her life choices and spend the most time with her. (Her dad lives in a foreign country.) I will continue to fight to live another day because of the beautiful being that God has blessed me with. I want her to know that she can overcome her family history if it should ever lead to a new diagnosis in her lifetime. (She is diagnosed with ADHD.) The key is early diagnosis and a treatment plan. Also know your limitations. It is manageable like diabetes, high blood pressure and acid reflux.
I feel much better now.
I feel like crap. Mentally and physically. I want to hide under a rock. But I’ve been pushing through it. I finally did the dishes after a week and a half of using every dish and utensil in the house as well as disposable plates, cups and utensils. It took several hours but I did it and cleaned the kitchen. But we were late for a dr. appointment which made us late for the next appointment which made me late getting to my mother’s house. I’m just tired of trying to act like everything is cool. Tomorrow I’m booked until at least 7pm. I want my daughter to be successful at school so I’m running myself ragged attending open houses and other functions. My hope is that once school starts I can go back into my hole. I know that I am on the brink of exploding if I can’t get enough time for myself to regroup. I see my therapist on Friday which is good. I have been doing some serious skin picking and I know it’s because I can’t handle this stress. I have a crater that I’ve dug into my ear. I’m going to try and go to bed. This sucks big time.
I haven’t been able to write here in a while. Even though I wanted to. My mind and body were really out of sync. I ended up going to the emergency room about my back (I fell off my bed and after a couple of days in pain, I could barely walk.) After some heavy medication my recovery sped up. I still have back pain but I’ll just add sciatica to my list of back issues. So you can imagine the stress I’ve been under. My foot has not completely healed after the surgery so I can only where this one particular pair of open toe (and open back) slip on shoes. It swells up pretty much every day after walking so I elevate it (even when I go to sleep) and sometimes even apply ice if it’s really painful. Oh yeah and I have to go get an MRI on my back because when they took an x-ray they found something going on with my lower spine. Great.
So I was having trouble coping with the stress (my daughter going back to school soon, trying to make a dollar out of 15 cents, etc.) and it was coming out in outbursts of anger and bad behaviors. My Lamictal has since been increased so I am a little sleepy throughout the day. Other than that I’m trying not to get overly involved with my daughter’s new school because I have already embarrassed myself (and her) since I can’t keep my mouth shut when I’m about to go into my depressive phase. I’m doing so well I could pinch myself. Not!
My goal is to have this school year run as smoothly as possible and let my daughter handle her business like she wants to and should. I don’t need the stress/trigger of getting involved in every little detail so why is it so hard to let go?
So yesterday I woke up at 6 o’clock in the morning after I had a dream that I was jumping out of the way of a speeding car that was trying to hit me. I landed on the ground and was rolling to further get out of the way. Well in that split second I rolled across and off of my bed (in real life). I landed on my knees but not before I had hit my night stand (which I had previously turned sideways to use as a TV stand) and scrapped a bunch of skin off of my back. I actually had to peel the skin off of the inside of my pajama top! I was really out of it and had to stay there for a minute while I figured out what had just happened. I was also in pain. Anyway my back is bruised and sore and I can’t sit up with anything touching the lower part.
The rest of this entry somehow just got erased and I don’t feel like typing it again. Good morning.
I’m not ready to reflect any further on my manic history. I thought it would be easier because it’s in the past. But that doesn’t make it upset me any less.
My therapist says that I should try to sign up with a temp agency while I’m hypomanic (I would describe hypomanic as being a step down from manic – still energetic but getting more sleep and more focus – yet with a touch of melancholy.) I am terrified (super anxious) about going back to work. Don’t get me wrong, I have applied for jobs before, but every single time I don’t get a call back I know it is because of the huge gaps in my employment. Then I start going into exaggerated thinking/plotting; if I get this this or that type of job they will have to hire me because I would have gone back to school and that would explain the largest gap and my lack of employment references. Then analysis paralysis sets in and I end up doing nothing. Sometimes my life sucks. (But it helps to know that I’m not the only one who has ever come to that conclusion.)
Anyway, I’ve been having a rough week. Hopefully it’s not because I dug up all that crap about my manic years before I was diagnosed bipolar. But regardless, I need to get out of this funk. I used my weekly gas money to go shopping (temporary fix and case book bipolar behavior – although other people do it too :-p); however the items are still in the original packaging. Maybe I will get another boost when I open them up.
So what are my goals for today? Get out of the house (been here since Thursday evening); practice walking (my foot still aches and I have messed up my hip and lower back in the process of limping about without crutches or the surgical shoe); also clear off my bed and change my sheets. (Ooh and lots of loud singing music since my daughter’s not here!)Bonus: a load of laundry or clean up the kitchen or throw away one garbage bag full of clutter!
C’est mon la vie! (This is my life!)
I forgot I wanted to write about the history or earliest recollections of my manic behaviors. (See the last paragraph of my post called Reflections) It’s been harder than I thought it would be. I have been working on this for a few days now.
I was 8 or 9 years old. I remember being outside of our house and singing at the top of my lungs while stomping up and down the driveway. My sisters were trying to calm me down but I would stop singing and then start all over again. I really felt out of control then, like I couldn’t stop myself. Then there was the time I jumped off of the chair in the dining room from a kneeling position to a kneeling position (and I wonder why my knees are so messed up) because I was imitating a character from Star Trek (the William Shatner era) on TV and I thought it would be fun and funny to act out the scene. (I got all the laughs that night.)
I always wondered why I was familiar with and/or fairly knowledgeable about so many different things. It was because I felt this urgency to know about everything but was unable to stick with one thing long enough to become proficient. My attention was not steady long enough to become an expert in any one field because there would constantly be another subject to catch my attention. (To be continued)
So I ended up in the emergency room the day before yesterday because I was kind of out of it (heart palpitations, disoriented, tremors, light headed, etc.). I was at my endocrinologist’s office when it got worse and since this had been going on for quite some time, she sent me to a local CentraCare for evaluation. They couldn’t find anything so they sent me to the ER. I received quite the work up, including a CT (head) scan. Thank God nothing negative was found but now I have to talk to my psychiatrist and general practitioner to explore other possible causes like medication side effects.
Other than that, I’m still recovering from my foot surgery. I got the ok to take showers! (Somehow, sponge baths are not the same.)🙂 I also had my bandages removed and can try to wear sneakers. Yes! But has all of the tenderness and swelling disappeared? No!
I see my therapist today which is great because I’m feeling anxious again and wanting to get on with (which is code for making unreasonable goals for) my life. I still think about going to med school to be a veterinarian, going to law school, or getting a masters degree in Education. But I get discouraged because I have tried pursuing this avenue of going back to school and then having to withdraw because of the incredible stress I put on myself. This happened at least four times that I can remember. Each time I told myself that things have changed; I have better tools, the proper medication, and so on and so forth. But each time I didn’t make it through and had to deal with the depression that followed.
Yeah, I can see how some people would think that I’m not doing anything but sitting at home and watching television. I’ve tried working (I’ve had at least fifty jobs in my lifetime – including the temp assignments that could have turned into permanent placement if I had solid attendance,) but because of my symptoms (sometimes unbeknownst to me) I would lose jobs that I loved and kick myself for being a slacker. It’s very difficult as you can imagine to keep running into a brick wall without a helmet. But nonetheless I still believe it’s starting to crack and with persistence I’ll be able to find my niche in this world and become independently wealthy or some form thereof.
It’s 6:30am. I couldn’t sleep because of the pain in my foot that is still bandaged from the surgery. I foolishly walked a marathon touring my daughter’s new high school and now I’m paying for it. The pain was so intense that I had to take a pain reliever. I started to feel better until nausea began because I took it on an empty stomach. So I ate what was handy. Prunes.😯 I’ll stop here regarding the prunes.
I decided to watch a movie. It was a documentary about Amy Winehouse. I can’t help but see some of myself in her. I’m older so it can’t be the other way around. It wasn’t our voices obviously. We had different sounds. And I never really got off the ground with my singing. I did plenty of gigs, wrote lyrics, made some money and even was in a girl group that went on to be signed to a record label. But I was a hot mess personally. I drank too much, smoked weed and acted like a wild child. I had been prescribed medication for depression but I believe it never had a chance to be effective. I also wrote poetry and read it in front of audiences. I shaved my head (a decade before Britney Spears) because it was easier to get up and go. I really felt Amy’s pain. An absent father and a mother who would check out at times and barelv talk to her children. The daddy issues; the unreasonable attachment to the men we drunkenly brought into our lives and giving them more power and influence over you (even if they didn’t want it) than you had over yourself. The anorexic behaviors. The confusion about really believing you were in control and had safeguards against going over the edge but yet still being crippled by depression and love lost. The terror of what would happen if you were successful in the music industry. I sabotaged that before it got that far.
I haven’t finished watching the documentary but I know how her life ended. I had multiple suicide attempts (maybe they failed because I never stopped believing in God – etched inside of me by my parents growing up.) I know that everyone’s story has different parts and different degrees of insanity. I wish she was still here. She was like a Jewish Billy Holiday…
Yesterday I had a pretty weird day. 2 hours getting dressed and having breakfast, 2 hours at my daughter’s dentist and 2 hours at her new high school. Then 2 hours at my mother’s house and when we got home I watched movies on my tablet for you guessed it 2 hours. I’m too tired to ponder what that means. My mom started in on me again about working. I had no real answer. It’s like I can’t even wrap my head around going back to work without having a headache. I keep putting myself out there and applying for jobs that I don’t think I can be responsible for.
Sorry but I’m really sleepy. Bye for now…