Monday, September 19, 2011

Apparently Bipolar Still Means Crazy

Today could easily be chalked up to one of the worst days I have had since we had the funeral for Justin's dad and we found out that my mom's cancer had spread to her lungs - yep, same day.

Handling bipolar under the best of circumstances means having little to no stress in your life, taking all medications as prescribed, getting into see your therapist and psychiatrist on a regularly scheduled basis, and being self-aware enough to know when something isn't quite right and having the guts to tell someone that you are feeling afraid of how you are feeling about yourself at that moment.

Or, there's just my personality.

Where do I, as a "real person" leave off and that "bipolar person" begin?

When I start to doubt my own thinking process, to wonder if the fact that I all of a sudden I feel that I am being "handled" because of the fear of how I am going to react, I know (I know!) that it's probably the bipolar disorder. And there's a part of me just screaming in agony because I know that I have a valid point, if I can just get past the drama of being so upset about it to try to have a rational conversation.

Today I had four extremely unhappy conversations with four people who were very unhappy with me. Well, I take that back. One person is trying to just stay out of it and let things fall where they may. I have to start asking myself when it is everyone else telling me I am (in so many words) being difficult and that I can't see any viewpoint but my own, that maybe, maybe it really is me.

And then I get so sad. I am sad for the person who I believe myself to be. I am sad for the person I am trying so hard to be. And I am sad for the person inside of me who has a valid point, god damn it, and if you could just past the whole bipolar/anxiety disorder thing and listen to me for one minute, you might discover that underneath whatever it is that is making you so upset with me and not wanting to deal with me might have just a nugget in there somewhere of truth.

I get sad when I feel that my opinion doesn't matter, that my suggestions don't have value, or, on the other side of the spectrum, when I work my butt off for something and then my creativity is rewarded with a "No thank you. You're just making us too anxious to continue to work with."

I'd like to think that with the wisdom of 47 years and a lot of those spent in therapy trying to figure out how to behave in the "real world" that I am presenting a fairly stable version of myself to the world.

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world~William Butler Yeats

I first read these words as a quote one of the government guys who had let loose the strain of the flu that would go on to kill 99.4% of the world's population in Stephen King's The there was a guy who knew when he had screwed up.

My screw ups are certainly not on the level of the guy from the book, but they usually feel about on that scale. I read another word on a blog that I read today and she said that she was "catostrophizing." This is not a recognized dictionary word, but I thought it summed up how I exist in a nutshell.

My husband always says hope for the best and plan for the worst. Some people might call me a pessimist. Some people call me negative. I call myself a realist. Whichever one it is, I tend to be the most prepared in any state of slight disaster. I'm the one who remembers the drinks, the snacks, the medications, the sun block, the beach towels for a five minute trip to the pool. I'm also the one who remembers when the kids' appointments are due, when the medications are running low and need refilling, that my kids look at me when they walk in the door and see that I am crying, stop dead to find out why mom is actually falling apart because surprisingly enough, it really doesn't happen all that often.

Today was a day for falling apart, which I did repeatedly. It didn't start out to be a bad day. But it ended up with my being unable to sleep trying to decide exactly what it was that made everyone so angry. Because when everyone else is getting mad at you, don't you have to start believing it's really your problem?

And now that I have thoroughly confused you through my ambien induced haze, I am going to attempt to quit crying and watch television until I can't think anymore.

Hopefully, we will be back to humor and sarcasm shortly.



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