Riding the roller coaster. So nothing new.

I’m feeling better today. Much more sane. That’s the thing about this stupid fucking disorder. You go to bed never knowing how you’re going to feel when you wake up in the morning.

Sometimes I don’t even know how I’m going to feel in an hour. 

To clarify, by better I mean that I’m not a complete basket case. No more “foreign film in hyper speed” or however I put it. Just back to my low mood and zero energy, which has basically become my status quo. 

However, I did have an appointment with my psychiatrist today. It went much better than my last appointment. I was starting to feel like I was falling through the cracks; my psychiatrist is so overbooked that I can only see him every few weeks for 15 minutes. I don’t think he’s aware of this problem. He tells me to schedule an appointment in two weeks, and when I tell the receptionist, she says he doesn’t have anything for 3-4 weeks, and can only squeeze me in for 15 minutes. During my last appointment, he told me that my illness is “too complex” for him to treat in the frequency and amount of time that I see him, and basically put the blame on me for that (or at least that’s what it felt like). I didn’t defend myself because, well, I didn’t really know what to say. So I was really anxious about going in today. But this appointment was unexpectedly 30 minutes, so we were able to work some things out, and it went really well. I’m going to add a med called Luvox to the mix and see how that works. He’s calling this Plan Q. I thought that was great. Though more accurate if we’ve gone around the alphabet twice already.

Well, that’s the latest. 


One day, one hour, one minute at time…

I’m losing it.

My brain is foggy. It’s full of noise and objects that keep bouncing around like a pinball, and it’s occupying all of my time and energy. My dreams, daydreams, and reality all seem so equally ridiculous that they blur together, and at times I’m not sure what has actually happened and what hasn’t. My thoughts are stampeding through my head so quickly that I don’t have enough time to examine them. I’m so fucking tired, but the white noise in my head is keeping me awake at night; like trying to sleep with someone screaming in your ear. If I can shut that up, the bullet train of thoughts about nothing and everything keeps me awake. It’s like watching a foreign film in hyper speed. During the day my thoughts are just as fast but my body is a slug. It’s exhausting trying to keep up with myself. Then there’s this whole rest-of-the-world business, which of course slows down for no one.

I read an article today about the “starving artist” appeal of accessorizing with a mental disorder. Perhaps I’m missing the sex appeal.

I need some advice.

It’s been a really, really long time. Sorry.

To keep it short, I’ve been ultra-rapid cycling. I’m not sleeping at night, I’m miserable in so many different ways, and I’m not really capable of handling…well, life. I dropped out of school. I started a new med called Topamax, which is supposed to help with rapid cycling, among other things. Fingers crossed.

On to the advice I need:  I’m looking for a new therapist, which is quite the feat in the area in which I live. Before I call anyone, I’d like the opinion of others that have had more experience with therapy than I have. What is your experience with psychotherapy and/or CBT? If you’ve experienced both, which do your prefer and why?

I would really appreciate some insight so I can avoid shopping around for a therapist (as much as possible). Thanks in advance!




A friend created this. I don’t have the right words in my vocabulary to express my appreciation. Whether or not even one penny is raised, this means so much to me.

Originally posted on Duffel Bag And A Dream:


In a small town, there lives a girl who gives everything she has for a normal life for herself and her family. She has a husband who loves her, and two adorable children who depend on her. She has a best friend who is more like a sister, and she has a great sense of humor. She has a heart and a mind worth knowing. 

And she is sick. She needs treatment, but to get to the treatment center will take a significant amount of monetary resources which she just doesn’t have at her ready disposal. You can read her story athttp://notcrazyjustdifferent.com/, and if you feel so inclined to donate to help this young mother get better– if you feel so inclined to help her fight towards the light, I know she’d appreciate it. 

And those of us who love her would as well.

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I’m ready.

I am ready for treatment this time. At any time.

I want to go to school so badly. But my recovery is more important. And it hurts to think of not going to school this quarter, but if I could, I would go back to Timberline Knolls ASAP. That’s a priority over school right now.

Most likely, I will be able to finish this quarter, as it’s going to be very difficult to afford TK. We’re going to have to try to save up for it. But at this point, I would actually be willing to sacrifice this quarter to go if we could.

If you pray, please pray that God will provide a way for me to get there.


Part of me wants to throw myself into the deep end of recovery, and another part of me just doesn’t give a shit anymore. I just want to stay in bed or sit in my chair and rot away. I’m trying to think about my kids and husband for motivation, but as terrible as this sounds, I shamefully admit that I’m too apathetic to even be motivated by them right now. I feel like lasting stability will never happen for me. Why keep trying? Why keep fighting so painfully hard? I’ll always fall right back to this place. There’s just no fucking use.

I’m sorry. I thought I was in a place that I could start a blog about hope and awareness, but I was dead wrong. I thought I could be a voice for people suffering, but I can’t even whisper for myself.

Depression? Mania? A side of both, please.

I’m in a mixed state.


I hate this. I hate hate haaaaaaate mixed states. I just want to crawl out of my skin. My last mixed state landed my ass in the psych ward for a 72 hold. 

I just want to be able to function. I’m okay with the ups and downs and the pills and whatever. I mean, I’m not okay with it, but I can accept it. If I could ever just get to the point that I could take the things this bitch of an illness throws at me without being knocked to the ground.

How am I going to finish school? How am I going to keep a job? How can I do anything if I crumble into uselessness whenever I hit a bad episode?

If there is an answer, can someone just please fucking tell me already?

One another note, I think I might go back to residential. I need to finish what I started at Timberline Knolls. What I wasn’t ready to do back then. I’m ready now, and I really think I need to take that step. But as much love as I have for TK, like hell I’m going all the way back to Chicago. So I’m looking into this place in Edmonds, WA. It’s not very far from where I live. 

I also want to go to school this quarter, which starts January 6 and ends in March. So I might go in March. I don’t know.

I’m just going to get through the holidays and then figure it all out, I guess.

Merry effin Christmas!

Finals, yay.

I can’t believe how long it’s been since I’ve updated my blog. I have been swamped with homework and studying. Tomorrow is my last final and then I’m free until next quarter! I’m going to post my review of the books soon. Also, after a bunch of bullshitty bullshit, I’ve decided that I’m going to get my bipolar disorder documented at my college’s disability office, and take advantage of the opportunities I have in front of me. I haven’t done it yet because I’ve wanted to do school “on my own”, but I’m facing the reality that by refusing the help, I’m just fucking myself over. My point in all of this is to say that I’ll write about my experience with that whole process (once it occurs) as it might really help one of you! 

So I do have some stuff planned, I just haven’t had the time to eat, let alone write a blog post.

Stay tuned, Kari will be back right after these finals.

Share your story.

If you have a mental illness, or someone in your life does, please consider sharing your story with me. It can be as long or short as you want it to be. It can be your entire experience or just an important part of your experience with mental illness. I have been trying to put together a post with different stories from different perspectives since the creation of this blog. Please specify if you would like me to use your first name or share it anonymously. Also include your age and, if desired, a link to your site.

Please email me your story at hopeisreal124@gmail.com

Your story might really impact someone.

Thanks everyone!

Books on bipolar: Still a better love story than Twilight

In my last post, I stated that I was going to do a recovery plan and share it here. After looking around the internet, I decided to purchase a book to guide me through the creation of my recovery plan.

After debating between two books, I decided on a book called Take Charge of Bipolar Disorder: A 4-Step Plan for You and Your Loved Ones to Manage the Illness and Create Lasting Stability. It was between that or The Bipolar Workbook: Tools for Controlling Your Mood Swings. After reading reviews, I decided the former was the best option for me. There are many other options, so if I don’t like it I’ll just try something new. I’ll update with a review after I read it. I also purchased the book The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide, Second Edition: What You and Your Family Need to Know.

While I’m on the topic of books, I’ll share a couple that I really liked. The first bipolar-related book I bought was Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder. Obviously, I did not purchase this book for myself. However, reading this book gave me a lot of clarity, at a rudimentary level. Reading the symptoms and explanations of bipolar disorder really hit me. Of course I had heard them all before, but reading about them in-depth opened my eyes. There were things that I thought were just aspects of my personality. Reading that book made it impossible for me to deny that I had bipolar disorder. Anyway, I think this book is excellent if your loved one(s) are having a hard time understanding your illness. I have the edition that I linked to, but there is a second edition available.

Another book that I absolutely loved is Welcome to the Jungle: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Bipolar but Were Too Freaked Out to Ask . I love this book. The author is so real and relatable. Not only will you learn about your disorder, but you’ll learn how to laugh at yourself, too. I can’t tell you how much I love this book.

Well, that’s it. Just wanted to update that my recovery plan won’t be posted as soon as I thought. I think working through a book will be much more effective than making something myself. I’ll share my thoughts on the books in about a week or so.

Edited to add:  If you have any book suggestions, please leave them in the comments below. I’m interested in any and all things related to mental illness and/or substance abuse.