URC BD

I’ve had a small glass of wine. I’m resisting the urge to write.

I have Ultra Rapid Cycling Bipolar Disorder. I’m not sure if there is “2” “II” behind it or not for this glamorous sounding disease.

Now, and for the last five days, I’ve taken a dive into the abyss of depression. No, I’m calling it a fall into the abyss of depression, that sounds less deliberate, because I certainly have no control over it.

If you know anything about or suffer from a mood disorder and read my last post, I think it is obvious that I had begun falling in a dramatic way.

I’m much more aware and less likely to fight against admitting defeat these days, so I call my Dr. and get in right away.  There is always a lot of crying on my part and a lot of rifling through my three maybe four-inch-thick file folder on his part.  I think I’ll mention to him next time – it’s time for a binder.

He looks, he thinks, I cry, I tell him what I think is wrong and he comes up with yet another plan. 

I’ve been cycling again, but not at all in a fun way, I’m not getting the pleasant phase. The productive, “Aren’t I amazing? “ and “I love me!” phase. All depressed and irritability. More like angry and pissed off. Either sobbing or berating myself as pathetic. Raw exposed nerves, don’t even talk to me and definitely don’t touch me! I want to be hit by a truck and throw things that aren’t cooperating. I’m not eating either. I cannot even enjoy the lack of appetite and therefore lack of calories because it is a danger sign that I’m getting closer to the edge.

No one knows I’m felling this way because I have way too many responsibilities and way too high standards for myself to drop the mask I have perfected over a lifetime.

So about now you might be thinking, where is all this going? She has definitely not been able to resist the urge to write.

I was resisting the urge to write because I had a small glass of wine.  I know I am not supposed to drink because of my condition, but when I feel this depressed it is the only relief I get until the medicine starts to work.  Luckily, I metabolize medicine very quickly.  That is also a plus for the very small amount of wine I need.  I have been known, a year or so ago and before, to drink a lot every night. And now I don’t. 

Writing my thoughts and feelings in a blog about being diagnosed with such a stigmatized illness was a great outlet for me. I couldn’t tell anyone I knew because of the shame I felt. It took me months before I told my husband. Drinking was the only way to feel anything. The medicine was levelling me out but there was nothing left. Being buzzed wasn’t the same, but at least I didn’t feel dead.

So what’s next for me? Drink and then write again? Today, and with the way I’m feeling, the buzz feels a tiny bit good and writing this feels good. It feels real. It makes me feel like me. The real me that I love. If other people felt this way about me I know they would love me too.

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Now for something serious.

It’s been a year since my oldest daughter has let me see my beloved grandchildren. She just moved back to town, an eight minute drive that I have only made once.

During a series of unfortunate events, she has ostracized me, banished me from her life. Only in my imagination and deep down believing it to be true I deserve this complete rejection, loss and humiliation.

I can’t go on right now because even after a year I can only keep this at bay before it envelops me once again in complete despair.

My New Mantra – Life Sucks

My therapist has been trying to break me of the way I view life when I’m happy or depressed. When I’m happy because things are going well and I’m accomplishing my emotional goals, I tend to think nothing ever bad will happen that I can’t handle. And then, of course, as soon as depression comes on or something terrible happens, I rate it as the worst I’ve ever felt and the emotions will never lift and I will never have control over my life.

I’ve got some pretty bad situations going on right now. For a year actually. I can’t believe I’ve made it as far as I have without cracking. I almost cracked a year ago over the summer. Rock bottom, thank god I’ve reached it and hopefully never have to take back that statement. I ended up in the hospital because of a practice suicide. I’ll have to explain that another time too, because this post is about reality.

I thought one day, a revelation of sorts, who ever said your life was supposed to be happy? It was actually a relief after I thought about it for a few days. I was always feeling like I wasn’t doing things right or failing getting my life in order.

Life sucks and then it gets better. I repeated it so many times and it blew my mind. The disappointment is gone when something bad happens and the joy of living in the moment when things are good is contentment. Imagine me, being content? If it’s only for an hour or so, I’ll take it! It is a brand new emotion for me. It’s rare for anyone I thing unless you are baby or a sleeping golden retriever.

So when I realized life sucks, etc, I created the “spiral”. I framed it and it hangs on my my wall so I can see it. The heart is there because one day I hope to love myself.

Tiles for everthing!

Is it paranoia to suspect I have gremlins following me around moving things I have just put down?  I wasn’t paranoid before, years ago, but I didn’t have that problem then.  I’ve put “Tiles” on my two sets of keys and my purse, my most lost items.  I think I’ve already saved a couple of searching hours in the last month.

I’ve lost my wedding ring, my work keys, $1400 in cash to name a few. It’s like I spend time thinking where I should put these valuable items and then immediately forget. It’s like when I change a password, if I don’t immediately put in in my phone, I forget it. Then I have to change it a second time.

I know it is a side effect of my Bipolar condition. Memory loss. It feels more like memory slipping through my fingers.

I make jokes at work when something is missing, “have you looked in my safe place”. Of course there is no such place. More like a black hole of important never to be seen again items.

I did track down where I had left my work keys. I threw them in the trash with a plastic drop cloth I was using for painting. So now I have to lurk around waiting for another coworker so I can follow them in, or have to ring the bell. How humiliating.

Then there was the $1400 cash.  I had my furnace fixed and confidently when upstairs to get cash to pay the invoice.  I went directly to an old purse hanging in my closet. The money wasn’t there because the purse was gone, I had given it to Goodwill the week before! I frantically called Goodwill and told them my story and could they look for it.  The manager was wonderful and said she would do what she could.

While I was waiting for her to call back with triumph in her voice, I began to think. Round and round in my head, searching for a clue in my overworked brain that would lead me to another tenuous memory. Waiting for that revelation when the clues finally lead me to the money. I rummaged through everything for hours. Even places I knew the money couldn’t possibly be.

Then it happened (angel’s chorus).  I looked at the picture on my wall and all the gears slid into place. I had hidden the money behind the picture frame!  It must’ve taken it out before I put the purse in the pile for goodwill.

I love it when I am that smart! I just wish it wasn’t wasted on my scatterbrainess (made up word). I called up Goodwill and thanked them profusely.

I don’t think it’s going to end or get any better, and I haven’t come up with a system to fix it yet. Well, that may not be true. I haven’t tried attaching Tiles to all my important items with glue dots.

Simplicity…. Could it be that simple?

I’ve not been able to write about my life in a long time.  I realized that when I wrote down what was going on it brought it all back.  It turns out I am still a master at not thinking about things when I stay busy.  That sounds like a very simple strategy, but it works even better now that the “tricks” I’ve learned over the years are now finally embedded in my brain.  It’s a lot like when we hear repeatedly,”to lose weight, diet and exercise.”  I had decided not to believe that before (me and the people that spend more than a billion dollars on dieting.”  Well, it is true, it’s boring, but it’s true.  Turns out thinking positively, keeping a positive journal (no matter how fake and cheesy if feels in the beginning) works.  Trying very hard and consistently to not dwell on things you cannot fix – works too!

Beginning from my divorce, I’ve slowly lost all the relationships that have been the center of my world. I’m not going to rehash the details, but I will begin to write how I’m dealing with it.

From what I’ve learned so far, simplicity.

A Pig With No Name

In the beginning of my divorce I bought a ceramic pig with wings. It was meant to symbolize how I used to think I could only leave John “when pigs fly”.

I set it on the floor of my car and before I even got home it’s ear had broken off. I glued it back on and again, thought about how it symbolized mending my life. I usually name things, and was waiting for a name to come to me.

Shorty after I moved into my new place I knocked the pig over and his other ear broke off. I didn’t have glue so I used packing tape to fix it temporarily. Again more symbolism for the particular divorce hell I was going through and I was doing my best “taping my life together’

The dog knocked it off about 3 months ago (had thought I’d moved him to a safer place), I taped the ear back on again. I still couldn’t come up with a name.

Last week I was taking a frame off the wall and it fell on the pig and he lost both ears.

So now I have a different view. That pig had become the Dorian Gray of my life. Looking good on the outside, but in reality, rotting, hidden from view. Even fixing him each time didn’t work. And after its last accident and my last post, I think it’s time to get him out of here!

Rock Bottom, Hit

Have you ever been so sad that you can’t move?  Feeling so depressed and rejected that even moving your face to cry is impossible?  Tears just roll down your cheeks? Chest unable to heave?

The feeling of unimportance finally proven to be true?  That all along fighting the thoughts of being unlovable were in vain?

All of those coping skills learned, all of the meds, all of the triumphs to succeed in life against incredible odds fail?

The betrayal so overwhelming and complete that your broken heart can’t move you?

The only way to tell these feelings is in a blog, because telling anyone else just makes you look more pathetic than you already feel?

This is the place I usually insert the last line of hope or whit not to worry anyone that I might finally crack.

This morning sitting comatose on my couch for the first time in my life might just be a step closer.