Sunday, 12 October 2014

Spiritual Health and Labels

I haven't taken my medication for going on two weeks. I have been doing a lot of thinking - when I can. I have been trying to identify things that have caused my illness(es) to get worse, and what could potentially help me fight them and get better.

I realized and have been wondering if that actual act of being diagnosed with something has convinced my brain that something is wrong and thus it acts accordingly. I don't remember (thanks ECT) how my depression really started. Andrea tells me things were bad and I spent a lot of time in the bedroom staring out the window - I don't remember this. I don't remember what led me to try Tap Therapy, or talk therapy, or then why I felt desperate enough to try a psychiatrist (who is awesome). I don't remember a lot of my illness even from this year. I don't remember what led to my previous (I believe 3) hospitalizations, and one of them took place 7 months ago. I wish I had these memories. I wish I had the ability to go back and examine what led me down those very desperate roads. What I'm left with is wondering why, say 6 years ago, I wasn't remotely where I am now. Yes, life has changed - but life always changes. There are always life stressors, relationships are always adjusting, things are always happening. Scientifically speaking, bipolar usually rears is ugly ahead in the mid-twenties - which is when mine hit - so I guess that could make sense. And when bipolar gets vicious, aspects of borderline also get worse - so maybe they are feeding off each other now.

I'm trying to distance myself from the label, distance myself from the drugs, distance myself from that whole side of things and see where my thoughts and actions take me. I will be honest, some days are scary - really scary. Most days are met with a general down mood and then if I can distract myself enough they get better. When I am interacting with people ('peopling' as we call it in my house) I get an adrenalin rush and that seems to hold me for a while. When I'm not distracted or busy my thoughts and feelings quickly head south - and when they are there any little thing (moving, career, relationships, the kids) can send me into a spiral of self hatred, suicidal ideation, and thoughts of running away and becoming addicted to some street drug to escape the world. I have managed, thus far, not to react to any of those thoughts.

Then there is the spiritual side of things. Not the religious side, but the idea of thinking of myself not just in terms of a physical body, and a scientifically functioning brain - but rather as something else as well - something intangible. That is one method of healing I haven't tried yet. I don't know how, though, to work through that side of things. I have done a lot of reading on meditation, especially vipassana meditation, and how that is supposed to help you get in touch with your more inner self and manage those negative emotions in a constructive way. I would love to try that, unfortunately the retreat that you go on you have to apply for, and given that they ask about mental illness I had to answer yes, which meant they sent me a form to be filled out by my doctor, and given the recent stream of emails I have sent him, I don't think he would fill them out in my favour. So I'm kind of stuck. I could try meditation on my own, but I really feel that given how logical and proof driven I am, I need something more intense, and someone to really sit down with me and direct me on how all these things are supposed to work and what exactly it is that I am supposed to be doing.

I have also considered bikram yoga again. I did it years ago. Yoga in and of itself is arguably a spiritual experience, but, again, you have the intensity of the extreme heat pushing you. I need something intense, it's the way I roll. Unfortunately for that, bikram yoga classes are quite expensive and we are not at a place where we can afford it.

So I am stuck. Big decisions need to be made regarding the direction our lives and our physical bodies are going, and I don't feel confident in making those decisions. I feel like I am along for the ride in my own life. Part of that is good, in the sense that i feel I will adjust and be the same wherever it is we end up, but part of that is bad in that I can't form any real opinions or feelings on what it is we should do.

So do I start taking my medication again? I mean, for the most part it kept me more level - but when I did get a down it felt, at least looking back on it and comparing it to now, that the chances of me acting on one of those negative lines of thinking was much greater, and that's a big risk to take. Without the medication, my moods are much more all over the place (at least so far), but the downs seem easier to handle, albeit more frequent.

I'm a prisoner of my own mind it feels. 

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Nearly Debilitating Realization

So, we've been trying to figure out for some time what it is we want to do with our lives, where we want to live, all the things that I think you're supposed to have some sort of idea on already - but whatever. So I voice my opinion, and then about 15 minutes later I realize that my opinion then was completely different than it was 4 days ago, and frankly, is completely different than the one I possess right now. My opinions, or wants are very fickle and seem to be every changing.

So I started to get down on myself quite quickly for a bit. The both of them went to bed, and I was left alone on the couch. Where I began to think. It was around then that I realized that I have never really done much reading on Borderline Personality Disorder. I mean, I have done some reading about it, but I had always assumed that most of my issues that were due to my being bipolar, and borderline was secondary. So I read. Then I read some more and more, and then I read more. I read scientific articles, I read personal blogs, I read articles in health magazines - I read it all. I spent a significant amount of time reading. It occurred to me that though I thought maybe I was ultra rapid cycling, that perhaps my moods, my fickle wants, my everything, are more due to borderline than anything else. And at this point, after an evening spent reading, and a night spent soul searching that this is the case. Nearly everything about borderline seems to fit with me; and its not like Im just pulling this diagnosis out of thin air, it was one of the things I was diagnosed with however long ago it was, and that and bipolar II often go hand in hand.

So now, now not only have I not accepted a bipolar diagnosis completely yet; I find myself having to embrace something else. DBT/CBT keeps coming up as a way to deal with the extreme reactions and emotions that plague me, but nothing seems to give any advice on how to actually make important decisions, how to actually find what it is that I want in my own head.

I have multiple fears actually writing this realization down. Frankly, it is taking every ounce of whatever strength I have not to grab some of my stuff and head somewhere else and just live homeless. I even researched being homeless in a variety of cities last night. I'd rather be somewhere else having nothing than subject my family to, well, me.

I suppose looking up homelessness in various cities is better than looking up various ways to kill yourself though....

Monday, 22 September 2014

All Over The Place

So this entry may be all over the place....

I found a new reason to stay alive when I'm feeling extremely suicidal. One of my daughters is very very much like me. I worry that because of genetics she will have bipolar too when she is older. That thought scares me to my core. It makes me hate myself more than I already do. However, I also want to be around to show her that you can get through it. I don't want to kill myself and then have her be diagnosed with bipolar and have the added weight of knowing that her own mother couldn't get through it. It has worked once so far.

I saw Wiggers a little bit ago. We talked about the fact that my mood phases seems to last a few days or even a few hours. I ultra rapid cycle. It's exhausting. When my depression hits, it isn't like a slow roll into the depths of despair - its a crash right into hell. I can go from being 'okay' to writing goodbye letters in a matter of hours. Its terrifying, and I don't know how to handle it. He recommended doing a CBT of DBT type of group to help develop some skills so that I can better deal with my emotions. He also gave me a prescription for some meds that will 'pad' me when I'm feeling suicidal. They will cover it up, and let me exist for a little while longer. My fear is that I won't have the courage or want to take them because I'll just want to die anyways.

I am beginning to think that I never actually dealt with having a mental illness. I find a lot of my thoughts lately are of how unfair it is that I have to fight for every moment, when really I just want to be like everyone else. I know every one has their battles, and as much as I would adore a stress free life, I know that's not possible or realistic. What I am positive of is that what I deal with on a near daily basis can't be normal, and it's not fair. I've never actually accepted that, and I think, until I do I wont be able to deal with this whole thing with any level of competency. I don't know how to accept though. I just keep wanting to fight it, wanting it not to be true, wanting it to all go away.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

A child at heart

I'm essentially a child. I had gotten used, kind of, to the fact that I couldn't have access to my meds for my own safety. When I say gotten used to, I mean I had found a way to just not think about it too hard, to just accept it for what it is. But now, I've entered a hypomanic state. I'm not full blown manic - and it's fun. I feel happy, I have energy (I'm even knitting again!!!), it's great! And I talked to Andrea when it started and she agreed with my that my anti-crazy pills weren't needed. Granted she did say they weren't needed "yet" she didn't say not at all. So today, tonight, I guess I am displaying more manic up signs and she decided that I needed to take my pills now. Her and Craig agreed that I couldn't be trusted to make my own rational decisions, and that I needed to take them. I didn't want to. After every single manic episode I get depressed. I just got over a severely suicidal depression phase. I don't want to do that again. I don't think I can do that again. I want to enjoy being happy for once. I mean, logically, I get it. I'm a mom, I have multiple responsibilities, I need to be able to be trusted. When I'm manic - I can't really be trusted. But I ducking hate being treated like a child. Not only do I not get to be in charge of my own meds and have possession of them, but I don't even get to determine when and if I take them. At the end of the day I am not in control, I'm reliant on the damn pills. I'm sick of it. I want to be my own person, not weighted down by mental illness. 

I saw a shrink last week. I haven't decided if I'm going to back...

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Fat

I am fat. I am so so fat. Obese even. I've been trying to find suit pants and jacket for a new job but I'm too fat for anything. I need to lose weight. I don't want to be fat. Teo calls me fat (even though I know he doesn't know what the word means) and it hurts. 

I need to try, while I'm feeling decent, to lose weight. I need to start good habits now so that they are habits when I'm feeling down. Maybe it will help keep me level, keep me normal. 

I'm really trying not to let this weight thing get to me. I'm really trying to stay as positive as I can, but I also know that putting any attention on my weight has a tendency to bring me down, which is why I often just ignore it. I avoid my triggers when I know what they are. I can't keep avoiding this one, but how can I put attention on it and focus on my weight without letting it drag me into depression again. 

I don't know what I need or how to do this. I know for my physical health and sanity I need to lose weight, that's about all I've got right now...

Monday, 14 July 2014

I'm letting down the one person who has believed in me and held me this entire time.

It's all gone

What's the point

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Failure

Things are not going well - speaking bluntly. I feel trapped, alone, and hopeless for the most part. I did have a good day yesterday - which is the first one in god knows how long.

I am sitting on the verge of a manic episode, I can feel it there, and it comes out a little bit sometimes, but it's not fully taken over me yet. This must be what they call a mixed episode - because even though I'm heading towards mania, I'm still suicidal. I had a plan, method, and opportunity the other night - but Andrea stopped me. I was angry at first. How long am I supposed to hang on? Supposed to feel like this?

I went to see Wiggers on Monday, and was absolutely honest with him about everything i was feeling. He gave me divalproex to scare off the mania, and told me to come back next week. He is doing all he can, I really do have faith in him, I just don't think this is every really going away.

The memory loss from the ECT is getting so much worse. There are huge chunks of my life that I don't remember, and yet, ones I'd like to forget are still hanging on. I realized yesterday that I don't remember this past Christmas, like at all, I don't remember really any Christmases with my family. I am beginning to forget things that are making me feel quite awful. What kind of mother or partner can't remember certain things about their kids' upbringing. I don't remember when or how Kahlan or Teo started walking. I only remember Remy because there is a video of it. I don't remember how Andrea proposed to me. And the shitty part is, ECT isn't really even working anymore - or maybe it is and I'd be a lot worse without it, that's a scary proposition.

I don't know what to do. I don't know what to try. I'm on the waitlist to try the DBT therapy again, it's supposed to be the best form of therapy for bipolar and borderline. However, it's two days a week, and I believe (if it still starts at the same time it did before) its at 2:15 and it's in Nanaimo. How am I supposed to get and keep a job if I have to leave twice a week right after lunch? *sigh*. We can't afford for me not to get a job. I have to work.

I'd like to try an intensive meditation retreat. However, vipassana, the one I want to try, says in multiple places they don't really like taking people with mental disorders. So am I supposed to lie, or just give up that idea?

Andrea is getting fed up with me. Not with me per se, but with what she perceives as a lack of trying on my part. She's all I have. She is the only person who I feel I bring a modicum of good to. My kids would be a hell of a lot better without my impatient, yelling, unfeeling self.

What do I do? I feel I've run out of options, and time. The time I had was when i wasn't working, and now I have to go back to work and I wasn't able to figure things out. I feel like such a complete and utter failure.