In a Dark Place – Trigger Warning

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I need to write. I need to get it all out because right now I’m not in a good place. In fact, I am in a very dark place and I feel sick to my stomach over it. I’m anxious, depressed and suicidal. My symptoms are really serving it up at the moment and I do not know what to do. I’ve thought about calling a crisis team or presenting myself to an emergency department, but I do not want to end up in hospital. All I can see is dark times ahead. No light whatsoever. All I want to do is sleep. The intensity of what I am feeling right now is oh so painful. I’ve all but lost my battle with trying to keep up with my studies. My new relationship is also on shaky ground. A few weeks ago I was absolutely fine. I was happy and focused and optimistic. Someone had come into my life and I felt ‘blessed’. Why do these symptoms come from almost nowhere and wreak so much havoc? Bipolar has already cost me so much in terms of lost livelihood, time lost due to episodes, and time lost due to trying to find the right medication combination. When I came off Pristiq just prior to Christmas, it was as if a minor miracle had happened. My sleep pattern went from abnormal to normal almost overnight. My energy was good and best of all, my anxiety had all but disappeared. So all was going really well for a little while there. I thought I had come out of an abyss and things were finally start to turn in the right direction. That was until a couple of weeks ago when my anxiety returned with vengeance. I was throwing up and when there was nothing more to come up, I would dry reach. After a week of this, I was completely exhausted. On Thursday I spent the entire day in bed with no energy and no motivation. I got to speak to my psychiatrist on Friday and he advised me to increase my overnight Seroquel to 100mg or even 200mg if that didn’t do the trick. So my anxiety subsided from Thurday when I resorted to taking Seroquel as a PRN. Today, despite having taken 100mg on Friday night and 200mg on Saturday night, I am a mix of anxious, bombed from the Seroquel and suicidal with my thinking. Seriously, how much can one person take?

I am reaching out to the blogosphere for support. I am not active on any psych forums at the moment so I am reluctant to post my concerns there. 

In my heart of hearts I know that I am not up to academic study. I’ve tried but I am not enjoying it and I am not coping with the workload. I simply cannot see myself being in it for the long haul. Stress has been the trigger of this latest episode and I know that being Bipolar, stress is something to be avoided or minimized. I don’t have anything to prove. I would like to do something with my life that is Bipolar friendly but I have no idea what that is as yet. Assuming I drop my uni course, it is something I will need to put some work into. Having suicidal thoughts because I feel hopeless and inadequate in the wake of having Bipolar is why I am writing this post. I don’t want to die and I shouldn’t have to feel like this. I thought doing two subjects was a safe call, but even with that workload, I am still struggling.

In regards to the person that I have recently started seeing, I am fearful that I will lose her because of my illness and this has my heart in a million pieces at the moment. I really like this person. She is understanding of the fact that I am Bipolar and isn’t bothered that I am not well off financially. She reassures me that she likes me for who I am. But the state I was in yesterday did freak her out and made her uncomfortable. She had come to stay with me for the weekend, however ended up leaving yesterday afternoon which made me feel 10 x worse. This type of scenario is exactly what scares me most. It is not my intention to make anybody uncomfortable because of my symptoms. I hate feeling this unwell and it’s during times like this that I question what’s actually worth it when it comes to stress and Bipolar. I want to do something with my life but it has to fit within the limits that Bipolar sets. I wish life didn’t have to be like this and I want so much more, but the reality is that I suffer from a chronic mood disorder and there are limitations that come with that.

I feel a little better for typing out my thoughts. It’s better than having them swirl around in my head and consume me 24/7.

Thanks for reading if you have made it this far. I really do need your support right now.

A week of stress

I have no idea what’s happened this week. How things have gone from such a state of calm and focus, to feeling scattered, stressed and anxious.

The tone was set on Monday and has continued throughout the week. After a restful weekend, I have felt overwhelmed from the moment I woke up and logged into my course. Prior to this week the days have been nice and calm and I have felt no pressure. It is testament to the fact that my mental stamina is still not great. Even as I type this, I feel a sense of anxiety that I cannot shake. Despite my best efforts, scattered thinking remains. Maybe I need to get out and clear my head. Right now, I’m not too sure.

The Bipolar brain is a funny thing. I feel like attempted sabotage is at play. And I’m in no mood for it. This week I have done what’s needed to get through and survive. However, if this continues to escalate over the coming weeks, then I fear what may follow. I’ve had my fair share of depression throughout this year, hell, for a lifetime even. I don’t want to go back to that place any time soon.

Part of the learning activities for this semester include the use of reflection. I constantly feel that I’m in a state of reflection, however, sometimes thoughts and emotions become intense and very uncomfortable. I cherish the moments when I am not overwhelmed and be able to switch off and truly relax.

Last night was great in that regard. I had a stressful first part of the day. I went to the chemist to get my Geodon/Zeldox refilled. This is a medication that has caused me much grief over the past few months. I am a prisoner to it at the present time. This isn’t a medication you can stop cold turkey. I tried that a few months ago and it was a scary experience. Being in between psychiatrists hasn’t helped my cause and this is something I am still angry about. Hopefully a much needed change in medication will come at the end of the month when I finally see a new psychiatrist. For now I just have to suck it up and be patient. Back to the pharmacy yesterday. I waited 40 minutes whilst the chemist engaged in chit chat with just about everyone that came and went. As the minutes ticked by I became more irritable. I overheard the pharmacist say that my medication needed to ordered in and it would not be available until Friday. Not a big deal, but this is something I could’ve been told much sooner, rather than just sit there while he talked to everyone coming and going. He was a friendly person, but unfortunately for him, I wasn’t in a particularly friendly mood. He came out and asked my how I was going with the medication. “None of your business! When will it be available?” I said to him with a passive aggressive tone. Didn’t his attitude change rather quickly. “Friday morning” he replied, before I walked off in disgust, muttering expletives to myself as I walked out of the pharmacy. Needless to say the shit will hit the fan, if my medication isn’t there on Friday.

After that I went grocery shopping, still feeling on the irritable side of things. Luckily there were no further triggers at the supermarket. I came home and switched off. Last night’s movie was the 2010 release “Eat, Pray, Love” starring Julia Roberts. Idealism aside, I thought it was a great movie.

The idea of packing up everything and going to see the world for a year. Who wouldn’t do that? Fair enough I don’t have the means or even confidence to take such a risk, but the idea is definitely one to romanticize.

What would you do? Where would you go if you could choose three destinations?

I would leave Australia around the middle of October. My destination would be the United States and Canada. It would be an Ice-Hockey road trip. Different games in different cities across both countries. I would hopefully meet some weird and wonderful people along the way. I would submerge myself in American culture, taking a keen interest in the working class and what makes them tick. I would relish eating in diners and experiencing the different landscapes. There would be Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Eve to celebrate. Memories created would be something to cherish for the rest of my life.

Next on the list, would be visiting a European country such as France, Italy or Spain. Again I would embrace the culture, language, food and landscape.

My final destination, inspired by last night’s movie would be either Bali or Thailand. Hopefully I could spread out available funds for an extended stay with the sole emphasis on fun and relaxation.

How nice it is to dream!

Back to the present and life as it is. This is the time for reassurance. I am doing fine. I am doing the best that I can under less than ideal circumstances.

I am grateful for the things the that I have.