Riding the Wave ... And the Trough

I am mentally ill, diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder I, OCD, ADHD, PTSD and a vitamin B12 deficiency (a key element in brain development). For over 12 years, I took anywhere from 5-8 psychotropic meds each day, and have been recently giving myself a monthly injection of B12.

In January 2012 I was hospitalized for depression, and management of my currrent med cocktail. Immediately all but two of my meds were discontinued and, after a few weeks of adjustment, and some near hospitalizations, things seem to be going much better.

I have been on permanent disability since January 2010, and am adjusting to life on a very limited income.

My prayer is that in walking with me during the ups and downs of Bipolar Disorder, you might find solace, and benefit through my experiences.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

"When Doing What You Did No Longer Does What You Want It To Do"

Go with me,, as I slide
           slope of

I can't really remember, but I think In the days long ago I actually functioned, not only well, but consistently. I could count on my real-life experiences to get me through most situations. My decisions were usually sound, backed by good judgement, knowledge and common sense. I'm not claiming that every one of my decisions was a good one, and that I didn't make some big mistakes along the way.

I can no longer count on myself

A few years ago, I started lying ... pretty consistently. These are not lies that really matter. For instance, if I told you I had seen a car wreck, by the time I tell it, it becomes a 5 car pile-up with dead and injured. No matter what I say, I exaggerate just enough to make it more interesting. I now do this habitually. And I hate myself every time it happens.

I can no longer count on my memory

When someone tells me that I didn't say what I thought I did, I have to trust them. Whether right or wrong, whether good intentioned or not, I count on my own recollection. If someone wanted to take advantage of me, it would be real easy. I worry about this; to date my thoughts are not deluded to think that someone IS taking advantage of me.

I can no longer work

That's a no-brainer. Without disability benefits, and a caring employer (not to mention the most gracious Boss in the world), I would be broke, homeless and totally dependent on someone. I am finally coming to terms with the fact that I am disabled, and I need to move on.

Here's what I've learned:

When you are diagnosed, come to terms with your illness. Read all you can, learn all you can and immerse yourself in the MI life. Many famous, intelligent gifted people with MI have come before you, and many will come after. You are here, now among a select group, whose ability either came through the illness or was enhanced by it. It will take a while to reach this point, and where that point is cannot be predicted. The most important thing you can do is "Embrace Your Mental Illness". Don't be ashamed.

Tomorrow: Why and how we hide our MI from others

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