Carrie Fisher, in “Wishful Drinking,” explains living with Bipolar like this:
“Imagine though- Imagine having a mood system that functions essentially like weather…”
That pretty much sums it up.
I hit bottom hard this past April. I have never had a depression like this one. It was the worst storm I’d ever been through; and there was damage done. It was nearly fatal. I had a note without a plan, so the lightening didn’t hit any trees, but I knew it was there. The depression lasted for two weeks or a little longer.
This was followed by the heat wave of a mania. None of which like I had experienced before. It was unbearable.
During bad weather, I’m normally able to find some sort of relief. Not this time. It was a constant barrage of symptoms. This was not the average go around either. It last longer. The skies are still a bit cloudy.
What does this weather pattern mean? On the fringes it means that I have had to give up my riding goal list for this year. I’m able to revise it now that the sun is peaking through, but it still stings a bit that I will not be able to accomplish all that I want to accomplish in 2019. My trainer reminded me that the good thing about a goal list is that there is next year. It also means that I haven’t been able to complete my summer reading list and that art therapy assignments have went to the wayside.
There has been more severe damage than just those minor trees that fell down. I have never been as afraid as I was this time around. I know a lot has to do with my doctor being out. But it also has to do with, as I said before, the lack of break in symptoms. Writing a suicide note, even without a plan, and not wanting to be alive is a pretty scary place to live in. Thinking your getting better only to fly into a bout of mania. One that had no intention of evaporating any time in the future.
The clouds are lifting, but slowly. I can handle being outside for small amounts of time, can listen to music, have the TV on (even if for background noise), and even read. I, however, keep forgetting to take it minute by minute; and tend to overdo things to the points of not feeling well again.
We, my doctor and I, are talking about future treatments. We’re trying what we can now, but if doesn’t work completely… The next steps are ones I’m seriously going to have to think about. From second opinions to Electro-Convulsive Therapy. We are going to watch the radar.
It’s a scary thing. I know I have my therapist and my doctor by my side to help me get through the storms. I don’t know what those storms may bring now. It’s a “wind hurts my face” place to be.
There are some things that haven’t changed. I’m learning to live in mild weather as apposed to perfect. Sleep and subtle noise irritations are always there. My illness is progressing and I’m not sure how yet. The seasons are changing. I have my umbrella and snow boots on hand for what comes next.
Where do I go from here other than forward?