Living with Bipolar

img_0943 img_0618Was on vacation in Nantucket last week, perhaps you saw the photos. Had a lovely time, but on the way back, had a meltdown. Sobbed all the way home, at the airports. I was afraid if security saw me, they would detain me from flying, so tried to cry very quietly. My crying had nothing to do with any world/political issues (though IS and Trump do reduce me to tears), it was, once again, fear for my son. It was massive anxiety, bordering on panic, about my son’s future. Will he be able to have a happy, healthy, loved life, will he find a job, be successful, be happy, clean his apartment, (haha)? And the emotions with all those questions and the awful fears that accompanied them almost had me screaming and pulling out my hair. Thank goodness, almost, because I was at the airport. Mostly I just sat there crying, huge amounts of anxiety surging in my chest, and not talking to my husband, or being angry at him for various reasons. At the time, I did not have the insight to completely convince myself that this was an anxiety, bordering on panic, attack. It did occur to me at moments, but I was not completely convinced. Got home, took my medication and went to bed. The next morning woke up, had all the anxious thoughts running through my head again. Punched the mattress, literally, to try to clear my head. Made myself get up, made coffee, drank it. Felt better. Then all of a sudden, like a light bulb turning on, all the darkness disappeared. And I was left asking myself “What the hell was that?” I also answered myself: anxiety and panic. Of course some anxiety and fears about my son’s future are natural but not to this degree. The bottom had fallen out again, and yes, it was bipolar to blame. I called my husband at work to apologize for the emotional storm, no answer. Called him twice more, no answer. Finally wrote him an email apologizing for some of the things I’d said to him and for falling apart, seemingly for no reason. Finally talked to him, he understood, he understands my illness, we have lived together for more than 30 years! It occurred to me that no one else has to apologize for symptoms of their illness like people with mental illness do. But then, our symptoms are behavioral and come with verbal volleys and they are hurtful to the people we direct them against, so we apologize. I mean if you get a fever, you don’t hurt someone else’s feelings, but if you scream at them out of anxiety or an activated fight or flight response, you very well may hurt someone’s feelings… so apologies must follow some attacks of mental illness.

Anyway, thankfully, I am fine now. Keep thanking my lucky stars and taking deep breaths. Last night I even read the newest Bridget Jones book, which is funny and annoyingly chaotic. But still fun. Today I went to the grocery store to replenish our food stores as we’d been on vacation for a while, and before that I was in Buffalo for three weeks. Cooking dinner tonight. Actually have decided I don’t like cooking much anymore, it makes a big mess and you only get one fresh meal out of it. Ok, till next time, gotta go make dinner. Also, I am doing a post with a friend called “Physical and Mental Illnesses: Two Stories” I’ll post that soon, we’re actually going to make videos of the same questions we both answer, he about his physical illness, and I about my mental illness. TTFN.

PS

I try really hard NOT to go to “Why me?” land? I don’t ask “What have I done to deserve this infernal illness that steals my joy and peace of mind?” There is no point in wallowing in self pity, you go through it, you pick yourself up and you go on. That’s all there is to do!

PPS

So happy to be back, posting again. Had a long dry spell. Thankfully it’s over, and I am writing again 🙂 I’ll be catching up on all my reading of blogposts as well. XXXOOO

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