Worst birthday ever.

I pushed myself too hard. I knew I was overwhelmed, but I wanted to be good so badly that I kept going and going. I ignored everything in my mind and body telling me; screaming at me to step back.

So I cracked.

On the 24th, Josh went to do some work for his grandma. He ended up being later than he intended and the kids were getting up from their naps. I was feeling really anxious, so I took an Ativan. That night, we went out for my birthday (which was the next day) and I had some drinks. On the way home, I finally told Josh everything that had been boiling over and I just lost it. I told him that I couldn’t handle it. Everything just spilled out. It ended with Josh taking me to the hospital.

So by 9am on the 25th (happy birthday to me! ha. ha.) I was admitted to the psych unit.  I hadn’t really slept all night because I was in the ER. I found out my psychiatrist was the one on call, so I was really happy about that. I was extremely tired when we talked and kept falling asleep, but we managed to decide on a med change that we had been considering for awhile (dropping the Seroquel) and he was just going to let me rest in the hospital and see how that affected me.

And then it all went to shit.

The next day, the hospital’s psychiatrist was in because it was no longer the weekend (my psychiatrist only works on call for the hospital on weekends). I was feeling better; at least, not suicidal, and looking forward to being able to discuss this with the doctor. When I was finally able to see him, he asked about my diagnoses and wanted me to complete a “mood questionnaire”. I told him that I was diagnosed years ago and have been working steadily with Dr. Berger for over a year with my bipolar diagnoses. He said, “Right, well I haven’t diagnosed with you with anything, so fill this out.” Very rudely. So I checked yes to every stupid “have you ever felt…” question. I shit you not, he said, “It appears you have bipolar disorder.” Gold star for you, Dr. Douchebag! He then proceeded to tell me that the medication Dr. Berger had me on did not work for bipolar disorder and wanted to take me off of them. Every time I argued with him, he treated me like an idiot and then began treating me like I was being non compliant. Everything I said was disregarded. He eventually just stood up and ushered me out of the room.

I have worked my ass off to get where I am at. Is it perfect? Obviously not. But it’s a whole hell of a lot better than where I was. I had a lapse. I momentary breakdown. And he wanted to take me off the medication that halted my rapid cycling and put me back on a medication that made me a zombie. I immediately requested to speak with a nurse. I told her that I wanted to leave AMA, which I could do because I was a voluntary admit. She informed me that if I left AMA, my insurance would not cover my stay. One day in that place is $3400. But I had to make the best decision for my health. And those med changes would have fucked up my brain. I couldn’t let that happen. So I decided to move forward with the AMA discharge.

Before I could leave, I had to speak with a social worker who would also speak with Josh and Dr. Berger and Dr. Baquero (AKA Dr. Douchbag later known as Dr. Oneflewoverthecuckoosnest) to determine whether or not I was a danger to myself. If I was, I obviously would not be able to leave. When she sat down to discuss everything with me, it was very obvious that she disagreed with the doctor’s decisions. She told me when I requested the AMA form to also request a complaint form. So she asked me all of these questions and it went well, and she talked to Josh and Dr. Berger who both believed I should be released… but at the end she told me something that knocked the wind out of me. She said something very close to, “I do want you to know that I believe you are okay to leave, but Dr. Baquero believes you are faking being better and believes you should be involuntarily committed, perhaps past the 72 hours, which would result in a court trial. I’ll do what I can but his opinion holds more water because he is the doctor here in the hospital.”

What.

I don’t know if he didn’t like that I disagreed with him, or if he had some issue with Dr Berger, but this mother fucker was trying to ruin my life. He also put it in my record that I “abuse Ativan” because I took ONE Ativan when I was feeling anxious (which is what I told him). I was prescribed 20 Ativan on January 9 and took my last one on May 24. If that’s abusing Ativan… tell me, how does one use it correctly?

So I had to sit in the psych ward for hours, in fear that I was going to lose my rights, be locked up, and have my medication changed on me. It was literally terrifying. I did not deserve that. It was ruled that by law they could not hold me, and I am home now, but I am still really shook up. It was honestly traumatic.

So that’s the story of my 22nd birthday.

I’m not letting this go; I’m not letting this asshole do this to someone else. He’s controlling and evil and I think that’s why he works in this field. He messed with the wrong crazy, er, “different” girl.

Much needed update.

Do you ever have something that you know needs to be done, and the longer you go without doing it, the more daunting it gets, so you keep putting it off, and it just becomes a cycle? 

Yeah. That’s been this blog.

But here I am. Trying to figure out where to start.

So when I was last (sporadically) updating, I was not in a good place. For a while, I was in a mixed state/rapid cycling. Basically, I was experiencing both hypomania and depression at the same time, or bouncing between the two very quickly. This is a very dangerous place to be. But my pdoc put me on a new mood stabilizer and that leveled me out to a relatively better place of just being depressed. But then that when on and on and on…

It’s so incredibly hard to not feel hopeless. When each and every day I’m merely existing. When I’m simply preforming the necessary functions to remain alive, but I’m not living. Every day when I woke up, I felt like I was just waiting to go back to bed. Every single day. When every day is like that, it’s hard to keep fighting, even when you are surrounded by people you love; people you are supposed to be fighting for. 

I can’t tell you when, because dates are irrelevant when you’re sick, but at some point the newest antidepressant that I tried started working. I started feeling better. I got off of the couch and played with my kids. I smiled and laughed and took a damn shower. The first few days were slow; I felt a little stronger each morning. But from then on it was like I just snapped into my old self. Josh actually thought I was hypomanic at first because he hadn’t seen me like that in so long. We were watchful of that, because antidepressants can do that, but that wasn’t the case. I was just feeling really damn good. 

Unfortunately, there was a down side. The combination of meds made me extremely tired. I slept about 14 hours a night, and was still pretty tired during the day. Obviously, there was no way I could take care of Laney and Rory while sleeping that much and being that tired. It was beyond frustrating to finally be out of the depression and not able to be back in “mommy mode”. I was still dealing with some anxiety and getting overwhelmed really easily, but I felt like those were things I could work through if only I wasn’t so bloody tired all of the time.

After a while, my mom and I sat down and had a discussion about where we both were at. We decided together that I needed to take on the afternoons as she needed to be home with her family during that time. So I jumped into that. It wasn’t easy, but having a two year old and a one year old isn’t easy for anyone. And she was still coming over on the mornings that Josh worked, so that helped immeasurably, because waking up early was near impossible with my medication. Some days were harder than others. 

So that brings things up to about a week ago. I was having a really rough time. Every afternoon was difficult. I was exhausted. I felt like I was barely hanging on. So it was about midnight, and I was watching TV, and I felt God tell me that it was time to take my home back. Fully. I was hardly handling the afternoons, and now God was telling me to start waking up in the mornings with the kids! So I prayed. I asked God for the strength, and then it hit me:  I don’t need to ask Him, I need to know that He will give it to me. So I turned off the TV, I went to bed, and I thanked Him for giving me the strength to do something that I would have thought a mere hour ago was impossible. But if you also would have asked me what the biggest desire of my heart was, I would have said to be able to be the mom that I know I am on the inside. And God was giving that to me. How awesome is that?!

So the next morning, my alarm goes off, and I’m tired. It’s early for me. So I sit up and grab the Jesus Calling devotions book off of my nightstand. I had never read a devotion from this book even though I’ve had it for a long time. I lost it for quite awhile, but I had just cleaned my room and found it, and placed it on my nightstand. So I thought reading it would be a good way to wake up. 

Here is what the devotion was for May 14, the next morning after this conversation with God:

I AM A MIGHTY GOD. Nothing is too difficult for Me. I have chosen to use weak ones like you to accomplish My purposes. Your weakness is designed to open you up to My Power. Therefore, do not fear your limitations or measure the days demands against your strength. What I require of you is to stay connected to Me, living in trusting dependence on My limitless resources. When you face unexpected demands, there is no need to panic. Remember that I am with you. Talk with Me, and listen while I talk you through each challenging situation.

I am not a careless God. When I allow difficulties to come into your life, I equip you fully to handle them. Relax in My Presence, trusting in My Strength.

 

Yeah. Pretty amazing. I can’t say it’s been perfect; the last two days I’ve been really exhausted. But overnight I went from barely being able to handle a few hours to handling the entire day. It’s not easy, but that’s not unique to being a mom with bipolar disorder. I just have some extra hardships. And I’m not going to focus on the fact that this isn’t my first post with a happy ending…yeah, it might all go to shit again. But today, it’s not. I’m living in the now, and the now is good.

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. 

Sigh.

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!

 

Fundraiser

karisuzanne:

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:

LINK

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.

Recovery.

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.

Cool.

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.