Are you afraid of the dark?

I have rapid-cycling bipolar disorder.  That pretty much means that my emotions are always right under the surface and come out whether I want them to or not. Before I was diagnosed people just called me a drama queen.  “Get over it,” is what people like me hear the most often. If only it were that easy.  I am on medication and take it as prescribed.
There are lots of different medicines that can be prescribed.  Unfortunately for me I can’t use the more effective ones because of my other health issues. There’s nothing to be done about this so I just have to tough it out. My ex (also bipolar) argues that medicine isn’t necessary to treat bipolar disorder, but he doesn’t have it together and I hate it when people try to trivialize my issue. If it was nothing I wouldn’t feel so hopeless when there’s nothing wrong, and I wouldn’t sometimes buckle when there is something wrong.

This doesn’t always happen. Sometimes I do everything right and I feel like I’m on top of the world. But other times I can feel the disaster building in the distance. I know everything is going to go wrong and it’s as though I’m powerless to stop it.  Thoughts start racing in my head – generally nervous  and neurotic – and even as I understand that there will be hell to pay later for my actions, the words form and leave my mouth.
I want to scream at people that this isn’t really me, but I don’t even know if that’s true anymore.  I remember being happy.  Vividly.  It’s not that I don’t want to be.  I suppose that’s why it gets to me so much.  I mean, I used to really accomplish things. Now… Dammit, now I have to give myself pep talks just to get out of bed.
I want to figure out how to get back to where everything feels alright, and I feel like I have a place in the world.

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Talk isn't cheap.

Take a Walk with Me…

I am a 37 year old woman with mental and physical health issues. This blog was born out of frustration. After having what I sincerely hope I will look back on later as the worst year I’ve ever endured, almost everyone I know stopped talking to me or being a meaningful part of my life. What I hope to accopmlish with this site is to connect with people as close to daily as possible while I try to make sense of what’s happened and is happenening with me.

I suppose the most prevalent issue I’m currently dealing with is agoraphobia. This has been occurring with some regularity since about 2003. I had noticed it a few times before that but when it’s not a regular problem you just assume you’re having an off week. No one gets it. People think you’re just being lazy and unmotivated. Not so. What I’m talking about here is a gut-wrenching fear often leading to panic attacks and tears when you think of errands you need to accomplish outside of your apartment.
I’ve screwed up the nerve to tell mental health professionals and counselors about this but I usually either get recommended for programs consisting largely of severely disabled people (no thanks, I’d rather cry alone) or ignored. I can pull myself out of these funks sometimes long enough to have a few good days.
I’ve had three long-term phychiatric hospitalizations in 2011. I don’t know if that helps or hurts in the long run in terms of my intermittent agoraphobia, since the places they take me to fix me are lockdowns just like the one I put myself in when the world scares me too much.
Today I’m feeling a little bit hopeful.  I’m sitting upright at my desktop computer instead of trying to type this on my droid and even have the blinds drawn on one of my windows.  That might not sound like much but to me, it is.

There’s so much more to tell, but I think I got a good enough start today.