Why I Love My Medication? Bipolar Disorder and All of the Excuses.

Yes, I too hallucinated strongly even though I look quite sane to you now.
Yes, I too hallucinated strongly even though I look quite sane to you now. | Source

Voices and Hallucinations

I remember following an intensive course about anti-psychotic medication along with five other participants. For a whole year, two times a week I went on my bike to this group of people I didn't understand.

They were all about ten years younger than I was. Just seventeen and most of them were diagnosed with Schizophrenia. I was the only Bipolar around but I've had three psychoses and therefore belonged to this group of people, based on having had a similar experience.

We all heard voices once, or still. We all felt paranoid once, or still. We all smelled things only we could smell and we all had our hallucinations at some point. The guy sitting next to me used to curse out loud. One of his voices bullied him all day long.

Why Care?


My psychoses were triggered by my maniacal episodes and for refusing to take any medication, to calm my brain down. Their psychoses were triggered because they had been smoking hash years in a row, while damaging their brains and ruining their futures.

I just did not understand why healthy young people would choose to be so stupid, whereas I didn’t have any choice, never did any drugs but was cursed all the same with Bipolar Disorder and the wonders of its nature. No drugs, no alcohol, no heavy partying and yet here I was, surrounded by a group of people who didn’t even care.

I remember how eager I was at the time, to learn about my specific medication. About the side effects, the dangers and what they could actually do to help me stabilize my brain. I learned not to look in the mirror at night, after taking my daily medication around bedtime.

My dark self image might transform into something else due to the side effects of my meds. Like taking paracetamol to ease your headache, yet headache can be a side effect of that same paracetamol. Quite an important lesson it was, to know I could hallucinate heavily the first few hours, unless I ignored mirrors and stopped staring into the darkness of my room.

I like dressing up to cover up my Bipolar reality
I like dressing up to cover up my Bipolar reality | Source

Overwhelmed by All the Input

I learned how well I can handle any impression, noticed by one of the five senses we have. My meds put this kind of filter in my brain, enabling me to process sounds of a busy shopping mall, an airport or a big square filled with terraces and people. I can go out for a drink and dance in a bar with flickering lights and loud music without feeling overwhelmed by all the input.

Sometimes when I’m tired I find it harder to concentrate on a story my friend is telling, I can’t handle the sound of a TV next to a radio on low volume and I hear the high beep of a television as an unstoppable annoying sound.

Fatigue makes me more sensitive to distracting factors like a door that keeps opening, a group of noisy people behind me in the bus or a crowd of people I can’t seem to get through. It not only distracts me but it seriously annoys me, for it takes me so much energy to process what I can’t seem to do quickly enough.

Try Three Weeks Without Sleep

Without my meds I would wake up every day as if I started out with six Red Bull bottles. Anxious, alert, hyperactive and totally restless. That’s why I literally jumped out of bed when being maniacal, wondering how come I felt so dam energetic. It was the pure adrenaline running through my veins, making me skip three weeks of sleep. Three weeks without sleep! That’s where I got psychotic on top of all the rest of my madness.

Thank God, I found medication that obliges me to wake up very slowly. I bump into walls, I drop things if I don’t concentrate on my grip of a simple spoon and it takes me two hours every day, to get my body and mind into full action.

It’s the coma I wake up from. That’s how I call it. After taking my meds I slowly feel how they shut down my system. Apart from breathing and my beating heart I enter into a state of total relaxation. My muscles feel weak as jelly and I always struggle to find my bathroom door. I can hardly move my body, let alone walk to the toilet but I never wet myself even though I came close to it now and then.

Accepting your Medication Isn't Easy

Do you think you can live a decent life without medication when you have Bipolar Disorder?

See results without voting

Quality of Life

‘Lucky for me it only took me six years to find the right cocktail of medication.’ Lithium was an absolute horror to me, just like Risperdal and the anti-depressants I tried. The bad side effects were always in the way of ‘living a normal life’ while maintaining a certain quality.

Lithium made me fat. 30 Kilo’s more than my slim-waist-55 kilo’s. My head looked like it had exploded, my ass was the size of my mother’s and all of a sudden, guys didn't look anymore. I was congratulated several times for being pregnant. ‘That’s why you look so healthy!’

Moreover it made me feel nonexistent. I was stable for sure but I felt num and disconnected from myself. From the world. I wasn’t sad or angry anymore, nor was I happy or satisfied by that same sun, shining down on me. It felt like having a filter in my head, working a little bit too well.

Every smile comes from inside, happy to be alive and in control of my own happiness.
Every smile comes from inside, happy to be alive and in control of my own happiness. | Source

Forever Psychotic?

Depression took a hold of me, for seeing a woman I didn’t know. Who was that person looking like a Michelin doll on a truck? Was she still there? Somewhere inside? Then finally after six long years I managed to convince my psychiatrist in changing his mind. Lithuim was changed to Tegretol (Carbamazepine) and Risperdal was changed to Seroquel (Quetiapine)

I had to promise my psychiatrist I would turn back to the original medication if the change would affect my recent stability in any negative way. I told him, of course mister psychiatrist but I knew from the start I would never ever do so. He always said I could better be a little depressed from seeing a body I didn't recognize than getting maniacal again. "Avoid any new maniacal or psychotic episode in your life because the fourth time it might kill you."

The reason for him saying this was not to scare me. He simply explained to me that the heart has a certain limit. When you are very psychotic, every process in your body gets into overdrive. Your heart starts pounding too fast from all the anxiety in your brains. Moreover, brainscells will die from the extreme activity you are exposed to and recovering from a deep psychotic episode will take more effort every time you end up losing control.

That's why some people stay psychotic for the rest of their lives, 'wake up to reality' every now and then and end up in a mental hospital....forever. Personally, that to me would be my worst fear. At the same time it is my deepest motivation to stay on my meds and keep on reinforcing my stability.

Medication and Excuses

Like most of you know, Bipolar Disorder is a serious mental illness that cannot be cured. Forget it! It's in your genes and you will have to deal with it whether you want to or not. You will find yourself battling against it, like I did, for as long as you can, until you realize it ain't gonna work that way.

Whatever excuse you might have for not taking your meds, Bipolar Disorder is going to be your new best friend for as long as you live. You don't like the taste of your pills? I don't either. You want children but now it's complicated? Yes it is. You think you can stop your meds because you're doing so well? Try stopping and you'll see why you need your meds in the first place.

Be stubborn like me and waste your time on mental hospitals, taking your pills whenever you feel like it and wondering all along why life is so f*cking unfair. Feel sorry for yourself for as long as you need to and lose those few friends you still have left.

Patience is a rare thing in life and you will need a lot of it, next to a good therapist, an intensive course of anti-psychotic medication and a whole lot more of suffering along the way. No it's not going to be easy but I assure you no one will ever guarantee you, it will be.

A Successful Immigrant

show route and directions
A markerHolland -
Nederland
[get directions]

Where I was treated for Bipolar Disorder. For 13 years I've been in therapy and found the right medication after all.

B markerSpain -
Spanje
[get directions]

Where I live since June 2009, completely stable because of my medication and all of my coping strategies.

Endless Possibilities

So why do I love my medication? Here goes:

  1. I'm still alive!
  2. I feel fit after waking up for real.
  3. Side effects don't bother me because there aren't that many bad ones.
  4. I can increase the dose when necessary and avoid any dangerous episode when there is a lot of stress going on in my life. (Of course I discuss this with my psychiatrist)
  5. It made me lose the 30 kilo's I had before. (Seroquel makes you feel satisfied after eating smaller portions and I went back to gym)
  6. I gained a lot of self esteem after losing all the extra kilo's.
  7. With more self esteem I felt stronger as a person.
  8. Next to my new girl power I began to challenge myself.
  9. I started travelling on my own and felt a new sort of control.
  10. Controlling myself on these small trips inspired me to take bigger steps.
  11. The fear of losing it again, completely vanished from my life.
  12. Self confidence, happiness and staying on track, reinforced my stability year after year.
  13. With this solid ground, I dared taking on the biggest challenge of all.
  14. I moved from Holland to Spain and started my life from scratch.
  15. In less than three years I can call myself a successful immigrant.
  16. Knowing I can start my life from scratch, made me stronger than I could ever imagine because this is where I learned to be flexible and to me this is a very important skill to develop in life in order to maintain my stability.

Did it come easy? No. Did it take a long time? F*ck yes! But I can look back onto ten years of real stability, no episodes and an amazing quality of life!

In my hand luggage I always carry the same basic things. A toothbrush, lip gloss, my passport and my meds. Those wonderful candies that gave my life meaning, after a decade full of pain, shame and stubbornness in my twenties.

More by this Author


63 comments

Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco

Wow, what an amazing Hub. Suffering from any mental condition is difficult, and can be incredibly isolating, since other people just can't know what it's like. I bet this Hub can be a great comfort to people suffering from bipolar disorder- just by reading about your experience and setbacks, they know they're not alone.

I appreciate having the chance to read about the disorder from the perspective of someone who has had it. Thank you for sharing your experience and advice!


crazybeanrider profile image

crazybeanrider 4 years ago from Washington MI

Simply a great story to tell, very inspiring to me, I struggled for many years with denial. I refused to believe I even had bipolar, psychosis all did not convince me, hospital after hospital didn't convince me, almost dying was not even a wake up call, until after many attempts of not taking meds finally made me realize I indeed have bipolar. I finally found a med that works and keeps me pretty even and hopeful for a change. Your story gives me more hope than I ever had in my life. There is life after a bipolar diagnosis. Excellent hub, and even more encouragement in your words of truth.


meloncauli profile image

meloncauli 4 years ago from UK

Great hub! I am so glad you found your answers to a better quality of life. I have a friend who has rapid cycling bipolar. She has been on all the drugs you mention and others but to no avail. Her high and lows are only ever a couple of weeks apart and this has been going on for years. She has had biploar for over 30 years. Alas, she also has now got the side effects of long term use of drugs she has taken.

Thanks for sharing all this, it's always good to read about a positive mental health experience


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Thanks so much for your warm and sincere comment to my Hub, Simone!

I really hope to reach out to others, suffering from the same illness like I did for years. It is true that it can ben very isolating and it is so very rewarding when you are capable to move on and spread out your wings.

Thanks for dropping by! I truly admire you as a writer and as a person!


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Oh yes Crazybeanrider!!!

There IS life after a Bipolar diagnosis. It truly makes me smile from the inside and outside, to know my story gave you so much hope in life.

Your struggle seems similar to mine. Dying doesn't have to be that wake-up call and I have to say...everyone has his/her own point in time to accept the illness and to start working with it instead of against it.

I'm so glad you've found the right medication! It can be such a long long road. Now you can focus on the reinforcement of your stability, enabling you to take bigger steps every time.

Stay positive my friend:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Dear Meloncauli,

That's so sad to know. Rapid Cyclers are the most difficult group amongst Bipolar people to treat. I've known a few in life and I can definitely say: "My suffering is nothing in comparison to theirs."

I too worry about the longterm effects of medication though I try to focus on the present and the state of happiness I am in.

I so much hope for your friend, new medication will come to the market, capable of stabilizing your friend for real. It must be exhausting to live her life like this.

I'm glad I could share my positive mental health experience with you! Thanks for reading my work:-)


Sueswan 4 years ago

Hi Escobana

I think it is great that you convinced your psychiatrist to change your medication. It shows that you take responsibility for your mental health and well being and by speaking up, you are also helping others.

Voted up and away!

Take care :)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Thanks Sueswan!

Great to see you stopping by here. My deepest wish is to help others as well, by giving them some sort of hope that there is a way out. A way to live a healthy and comfortable life with Bipolar Disorder.

Thanks for your votes darling! Bless you:-)


Lipnancy profile image

Lipnancy 4 years ago from Hamburg, New York

I give you so much credit for helping others with your courageous story. Kudos to you. Keep the education coming.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Lipnancy,

Thanks for the extra motivation you gave me to keep on doing what I so passionately believe in. To educate and help others to overcome this horrible illness and to find that way out, in order to have a great life anyway.


sandrabusby profile image

sandrabusby 4 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

What a story you have told and will have more to tell as your life progresses. You have a great gift for writing and the rare ability to write from "inside" the disease. Keep up the good work.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Dear Sandra:-)

I will keep on telling and hope to be on a big stage one day in front of a huge crowd of psychiatrists, patients and familymembers. People who are all affected by Bipolar Disorder in one way or the other.

It would be so much more effective than just the written word but for now I hope to touch those who really suffer from this, in order to gain a more positive perspective on their own lives.

I know there's so much more to gain within the limits of our Bipolar world.


sonia 4 years ago

Are u sure that seroquel decreases ur appetite? I take those meds and I know many people that take them as well and the general consensus is that u are always hungry and increases appetite even with smaller portions of food.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Sonia,

I'm sure Seroquel decreases my appetite but I can see your point. My psychiatrist at the time let me know that some people gain weight and some people lose weight.

Depending on every single person and the way someone responds to medication. Since I take Seroquel it's impossible for me to have dinner in a restaurant with a starter, main course and dessert.

I used to be able to do that all the time but I am full most of the time after my starter. However I must say, losing weight was a combination of medication, exercise and eating healthy food and it took me one and a half year to lose the 30 kilo's permanently.

I'm thinking of adding some information about your comment though. What works for me doesn't necessarily works for others.

Thanks for stopping by:-)


sonia 4 years ago

wow you are very fortunate to have a positive side effect of feeling full with seroquel, I do have the same effects of deep "coma" sleep like you mentioned with seroquel and it does take me some time to fully be awake in the morning as well. Yes its true everyone responds differently to medication. Just very surprised u had that side effect, I have been on many many different meds (15 or so) all of them of are weight gainers.


AKqueencrab profile image

AKqueencrab 4 years ago from Juneau, Alaska, USA

Thank you for sharing!


Mighty Mom profile image

Mighty Mom 4 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

Escobana,

You are the poster girl for Bipolar! I'm in awe at not only how well you've handled your mental illness, but all the accomplishments since switching to more manageable drugs. Congratulations. Thanks for writing your truth so courageously and beautifully! MM


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

You're welcome AKqueencrab:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

MM...now you really make me blush!

Thanks for your wonderful words on yet another beautiful day here in Spain. I sincerely believe there is a way for everyone to achieve great things in life when you're Bipolar.

Medication is one of the keys to achieve that, next to people around you that keep believing in your progress and talents. Just like you I had very good therapists who guided me for years to become a happy person.

Happy we met here:-) Thanks for the lovely comment!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

This is a great hub. I am so glad you found medication that works for you. I have friends that are bipolar and some have been lucky enough to find a combination of meds that work, and others have not had that kind of success yet. Thank you for sharing your story! Voted up and sharing this hub!


DanaTeresa profile image

DanaTeresa 4 years ago from Ohio

This is fantastic! Thank you so much for sharing.

I have Biopolar II. Lucky for me I only get hypomanic. But the depression is crippling! It has only been a few years since my diagnosis and I am still figuring thing out. I have gained a lot of weight too! You have given me a lot of hope and encouragement. I only got to give this a quick read, I am late for work! whe I get home I will give it another read through and I will be sure to link it to my mental health hubs, and the new ones I plan to write.

Thanks again and I am so happy about your successes. You are a great person and you deserve it!


Ms Chievous profile image

Ms Chievous 4 years ago from Wv

Escobana,

This is truly inspiring! Your insight into the mental illness is truly key to your recovery. Another thing that might be key to your success is your relationship with your psychiatrist. It sounds like you have a good working relationship with him/her. Maybe your next hub can be on how to develop a good relationship with your physician ??


PHILLYDREAMER profile image

PHILLYDREAMER 4 years ago from Lodi, New Jersey

I stopped taking my meds because they became to expensive, but now I feel like I'm incapable of doing anything. It's funny when i was younger I would charge down any problem that got in my way, but things seem so harder. After reading this I'm wondering if it's because I went so long without medication. I've never experienced anything as severe as what you described, but sleeping is hard to do sometimes.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

"was cursed all the same" - I do not see you cursed.

"that cannot be cured" - And I am not sure who lied to You about this but it's a lie.

I wish You well and I know You can overcome your trials. You are a strong Spirit.

May Wakan Tanka guide your path!

P.S. I forgot to ask, how are is your sleep? Do You dream? Just curious.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

lol Commenting before the morning coffee is bound to end-up with editing errors. I meant to ask how your sleep was but the lack of coffee resulted in me trying to ask two questions at once ... haha. Cheers!


Jlava73 profile image

Jlava73 4 years ago from Cyberspace and My Own World

Escobana,

What an inspirational Hub! For someone who understood very little about this topic you have provided much insight about what it is truly like. You are an Amazing person and I am so glad to see that you are living an extraordinary life! I bet many will find hope in your experience.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

To Jeannieinabottle

Thanks so much for reading my Hub. I am very aware of the fact that I was lucky in finding the right cocktail of medication. I'm sorry to hear not all of your friends were successful in finding the right meds.

I believe there is a big difference between Holland and America in terms of treatment and the access to it. Our health system for instance makes it possible for anyone to get the right treatment.

I should write a Hub about that because I know it's another key to my successful way of coping with Bipolar Disorder.

Thanks a lot for the votes and sharing!


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi DanaTeresa,

First of all...you'll get through it just like I did! Don't ever give up on the multiple possibilities there are these days to get the right treatment.

Depression is the worst part of this illness to me, as it isolates you completely from the outside society. I read you were late for work. That is a good thing. I mean:-)

You work! You can work and for a lot of Bipolar people, work is not an option. It helps you to get out, mingle, be around colleagues and feel useful in your day to day life.

I wish you all the luck in the world to find your way and get to the point of controlling your illness, without even noticing it. That's what happened to me.

I do a lot of things different before I was diagnosed. To protect my stability. Yet, I feel I'm alive and kicking. Hope you'll feel encouraged even more by reading my other Bipolar stories.

Thanks for linking my Hub to yours! I'm certain I will do the same:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

To Ms Chievous

I'm happy to know it was inspiring to you:-) And I did have a great relationship with my psychiatrist. Most of this happened to me in Holland but I have to say getting to a really good one, took me six years of lousy psychiatrists and therapists. Way too long of course but

I never gave up in looking for a better one.

It's definitely worth writing a Hub about this!

My experience in Spain is very different though I have a psychiatrist here.I was already stable AND happy so he really doesn't do that much anymore.

I see a Hub coming here:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Phillydreamer,

Your comment made me realize one important thing. If I would not sleep 10 to 12 hours every day, it would be impossible to maintain the quality of life I so much enjoy.

Sleep and Bipolar Disorder go hand in hand. Your brains need to rest meaning no activity at all. If you don't get that rest, you'll start your day with too much brainactivity. It's so hard to get things done that way.

Moreover you have a certain amount of energy for each day. Not enough sleep means not enough energy to start with.

If it wasn't for Seroquel I would sleep too little and not deep enough. This to me is one of the keys to my well being. Start your day slow and well rested.

I hope I helped you out a little bit with my view on this and I wish money wouldn't be an issueto choose for meds or not.

Best wishes to you...


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hey there Mr Happy!

What you don't see in my pictures, maybe still is there when I have my private moment of sadness. Bipolar Disorder is a curse to many of us though I feel extremely lucky for having kicked its ass:-)

If I could choose a life without it I would. Today even.

Cured it cannot be I'm sure. In my case I have been severely damaged in many ways by the extremity of my numerous episodes. I had too many of them making it all the more important not get to that point anymore.

But I see your point. I have a friend with Bipolar Disorder, working a full time job, taking very little medication and writing serious books next to it. She's completely fine.

Bipolar Disorder is different to anyone. To me it's impossible to get cured from it as in leaving my medication for good. That to me would be a real cure.

But I'm very satisfied with what I achieved and blessed too. I dream very little. Seroquel knocks me out though sometimes I dream of sandy beaches, palmtrees and Brazilian rainforest. My vision of a new life to come:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Dear Jlava73,

That's such a sweet thing to say. I'm glad you understand the illness much better now. I think for a lot of Bipolar people, understanding the illness is vital to recovery.

Yet, it's a tricky illness. I do hope others will find hope in my stories. Because there is:-)

Thanks for stopping by girl


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

Greetings again,

First of all, I would like to thank You for the conversation. I do apreciate discussions.

I will start a little backwards and tell You that I am very happy that You can still dream, even though it is not that often. Some people never dream thus, You are already doing much better (than others - in that aspect). : )

Now, You are fully right in saying that the Bipolar Disorder affects everyone differently. After all, we are indeed individuals and considering that we all have our own personal experiences, personal power and such, dealing with matters which need to be overcome is different for all of us (to a certain extent).

At this point, I can show You a little dilemma I have from a few of your statements.

"If I could choose a life without it I would. Today even." & "My vision of a new life to come."

I can work with those two statements. They are positive statements and they empower You but then, You nullify them by saying: "Cured it cannot be I'm sure."

The way I understand the situation, is that You want to be healed, You can even dream of a new Life but your reason holds You back.

I am curious about your categorical statement that you cannot be healed, fully. How did You come to believe that? Is it because of your previous failed attempts at healing or is it because doctors told You so and You believed them or ... I am just curious.

By the way, I do know that this disorder can be deadly if it is not taken care of, one way or another. So, I am not trying to minimize or overlook your trials. I actually see a strong Spirit that is waiting to emerge from the shadows.

I wish that Spirit well and that Wakan Tanka will guide It to the Light.

All the very best, Amiga!


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

The vision of 'my new life to come' is the reality I will be in next year. I'll be traveling to Brazil around September 2012 for three months to join the love of my life.

From there on (2013) we know where to go in Brazil and we can decide where to build our life. The dreams I have are a result of visualizing my 'new life to come'. Before going to bed I can 'see' my sweetheart next to me on the beach, finally together after the long wait in our long-distance relationship.

This major change over from Spain to Brazil would be as major as my change from Holland to Spain, however only possible if I take my medication and follow strict rules in life to go through it, while being able to handle the stress that comes with it.

Cured I will never be but we have to define what cured means to me.

Curing me from Bipolar Disorder means not having to take medication because I would function as any normal person without it.

Meaning I could handle lots of stress like 'normal people' can without losing my job. Without giving up my wish to have children and without having to think from one decision I make to the other, whether this would be good for my sanity or not.

It's no picknick to monitor myself every day but I got used to it as part of my life. Cured to me would mean a garantuee to life without anymore of those horrible episodes of insanity.

My doctor never told me I couldn't be cured. In fact he told me that I could grow over it sort of, if I stayed stable for many many years.

My medication would be part of my entire life though, possibly decreasing the dose a bit. We experimented with that before when I was stable for a while, getting me out of control in weeks.

To be fully healed, cured or saved from this illness is no option to me in my case. The risk to die and try out some spiritual healing for instance, to me is not a risk worth taking.

We all have our demons in life to fight. Mine has been beaten up quite a bit and I'm still winning:-)

Thanks for your guidance and have sweet dreams...this girl is gonna rest now...Best wishes to you too amigo!


PHILLYDREAMER profile image

PHILLYDREAMER 4 years ago from Lodi, New Jersey

Mr. Happy I'm given to believe Bi Polar is a disorder and not a disease, meaning it is a unique development of someones mind and therefore it can not be cured. Maybe it is a weird kind of evolution, but the fact is if you have been properly diagnosed with it the only thing you can seek out is treatment. There is no special therapy or no magic pill that can cure it, because it's not an illness. The fact is even medicines that are prescribed to help become ineffective after a while and then the doctors prescribe new ones.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

That is an interesting perspective Mr. Phillydreamer.

It is even better then because everything in the human body (and in Life in general terms) undergoes constant change. Change can mean anything in my world! : )

And I must make a point here that I do not promote healing through pills. Like You well said, pills and medication from the pharmaceutical industry always fails ... eventually anyway because they do not heal the causes - they just try to deal with the effects for the most part.

Healing must be done from within; from ourselves and with personal power. I'm ahead of my words for now though.

All the best to You! : )


DanaTeresa profile image

DanaTeresa 4 years ago from Ohio

Escobana - Thank you so much for the encouragement. It has been a rough ride while I get things figured out. If I am one thing I am determined! Now the trick is to stop falling back into my bad habits of not taking care of myself and my affairs. I just feel like I don't have the energy (body and mind) to do it all sometimes. The ADD doesn't help much either. Being unfocused it exhausting. I have tried every med for it and they either don't work or I get horrible side effects because of my other meds.

Yes. I work. I always have until recently. I was unemployed for 6 months and I just started working again. During those months the thought of going back to work terrified me so completely that I cried at the thought of it. I am working a temporary three month position. It is a test to see if I can do it. I really do love getting out and having a little group of people I see every day. The work is not too hard for me. But working is very hard for me. I need about 9 or 10 hours of sleep a night or I fall apart. I take about 90 minutes in the morning to get myself ready for the day, and even then I have to force myself to eat breakfast and it is usually in the car on the way there. I hate packing a lunch. I find it depressing. I hate being stuck there all day. I need time to wind down when I get home (that is what I am doing now), and then another hour to relax before bed or I wont sleep (even with the trazodone). I am so tired by the weekend that one whole day must be devoted to rest.. So what I am trying to say is, I work, but it doesn't leave room for much of a life. My house is a mess, I don't have time or energy for my boyfriend, I have so much less energy to write and that kills me. So I don't know what to do. I see my therapist next week. I need money to live, but when I am making money I am not living. I have given up on kids a long time ago, but I would like to have a life. I am trying to find something part time. And to maybe try being a freelance write, butI just started writing and I fear it is doing to take along time to get anywhere. Do you work? Or know how people with bipolar still work? Or just have some advice?

You and Mr. Happy have quite the discussion going. It got me to thinking about the concept of being "cured". Sadly I think it is impossibe, or a very rare occurance. I thinkit is possible to live a happy life on little medication, or maybe even none. But that is not a cure. I met a young woman recenlty who started out on various med cocktails. Now she is eliminating her meds one by one with help of her phsychiatrist. And she is doing great and working as a nurse. But she is very very careful to take care of herself a dnget enough sleep and eat the right foods and avoid her triggers. So really she is not cured. A few slips and her bipolar could resurface. Its sad. But its reality. I think of curing bipolar as akin to curing something like diabetes. Its just not a reality yet. All you can do is take care of yourself and manage it.


Docmo profile image

Docmo 4 years ago from UK

I takes a lot of courage and conviction to be able to share such a poignant and honest overview of personal journey. You're an inspiration to everyone. Well done, very well written. voted up, up and away.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

To Phillydreamer and Mr Happy,

Bipolar Disorder is disorder, a mental illness and sounds a lot like a disease to me. However I don't mind what it's called and what the difference might be.

The fact still is...It sucks when you have it.

The chemical inbalance in my brain is chemical and therefor not something you can 'hum' away. In fact if I would go to an ashram in India to meditate and go through some sort of healing proces, I might very well get psychotic.

My medication is the right stuff to complete the chemical inbalance in my brain. It's restoring that chemical inbalance and I have been taking the same pills for 8 years now. It still functions the same.

Healing the cause as Mr Happy states is only possible when I can go back to womb of my birhtmother. Redoing the proces of imperfect DNA. Impossible.

I'm curious though how you think healing would be an option. Remember that a lot of Bipolar people don't want to accept medication or treatment, believing in other sorts of healing through food, meditation or prayer.

Am I happy with the long life perspective of medication? Nope. But I healed myself along the way by accepting my illness for what it is. Healing as in accepting who you are with all of your burden, is a challenge for many of us.

Great discussion guys! Thanks so much!


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Docmo:-)

Thanks so much for your votes and lovely words! I'm glad I could be of any inspiration to you. You're very welcome:-)


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Dear DanaTeresa,

Sorry it took some time to respond. The reality with Bipolar Disorder for many of us is yours. I mean this in a very practical way.

A full-time job is complicated with the long hours of sleep we need. Going to bed really early means missing out part of your night. A little tv, hobbies, time with your partner.

A relationship with a partner is harder for us. We find it hard to devide our energy amongst all of the daily things in life. Household, groceries, sports, quality time with our partner, time for yourself AND work.

Learning how to say no to great things is tip I can give you. Sounds strange but you will benefit from the energy it saves you. You can still do a lot of great things in your life but not all in one day or all in one week. A part-time job would be advisable in your situation but writing online and making money isn't that easy.

It's worth trying next to a part time job but the earnings in the beginning maybe aren't enough with a part-time job. I'm lucky for having my pension of course.

A job in general with the heavy medication works much better if you can start at 10 a.m. instead of 8.30 a.m. Enough time to start up and in my case I am not allowed to work more than 5 hours in a row. Doing more would exhaust me so much that I would need to take a day off in the weekend for rest, like you do now.

If you're a tidy person like me, the good thing of a tidy house is the fact that you come home in an area without too much clutter around. A quiet space means a quiet mind. What you don't have to see, you don't have to process.

Of course if you lack the energy to clean up it's hard. Try it out though and find a way to clean your house little by little until you reached a certain piecefulness with it. From there it's only a matter of keeping it up every day. Takes a lot less energy than having to clean it up once in a while for hours and hours.

As for the cure and the discussion. You've read my comments of course. I don't believe it at all. I believe in finding the right copingskills to deal with it and reach REAL stability.

Bipolar Disorder in the end is a rollercoaster ride from which you can learn a lot and grow as a person. I wouldn't be so strong now if I hadn't been tested so many times.

Hope I helped you out a little bit:-) Hugs!


DanaTeresa profile image

DanaTeresa 4 years ago from Ohio

Escobana - No Need For Apologies! I am honored that you even took the time to respond, and so generously!

I slept most of this weekend. Recharging from the exhaustion of a 40 hour work week. I think a full time job is not going to be for me. As usual, my psychiatrist was right. And I will tell him so when I see him tomorrow. Trying part time is next. Yes, makin gmonay writing online is a lot of work. But it doesn't feel like work to me. I can do it for hours and I don't feel drained. Quite the opposite. So I have decided to work my butt off and see if I can do it. I have no delusions about being rich and if it doesn't happen its ok because I am finally doing something I love.

You are SO right about tidiness being important. I feel much better when things are neat and clean. Messes trigger my depression. Having ADD as well and being a bit of a pack rat can lead to lots of messes. My therapist has given me some awesome tips. Now it is up to me to do the work. Still ups and downs with that.

This is all so new to me that sometimes I wonder if I even really have bipolar. I wonder if I am just not trying hard enough. Maybe I am just lazy. Then I read things written by people like you and it is as if you have crawled inside of my head and are writing my life. So I guess that says it all. And that actually makes me feel better. Because it gives a name to the struggle I am facing, ideas on how to succeed, and hope that I will.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I wish you the best for success, happiness, stabilty, and all of the wonderful tjhings you deserve.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

I wish for you to succeed in every sense of the way!

Much blessings to you DanaTeresa:-)


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

In fact if I would go to an ashram in India to meditate and go through some sort of healing proces, I might very well get psychotic. - Or You might heal ... lol

"Healing the cause as Mr Happy states is only possible when I can go back to womb of my birhtmother. Redoing the proces of imperfect DNA. Impossible." - This is what I am not willing to battle: your Will. Your Will is your wish! (You have to let go of reason and follow your Will.)

And this is why I had/have a will to help You: "Am I happy with the long life perspective of medication? Nope."

Choices, choices, choices ... it is a year of choices and Power. I wish You the Power necessary to overcome!

"Hoka-hey". ("It is a good day to die")


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

Me again, : )

I wrote something last week, not necessarily for You but with You in mind. Cheers!

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/How-I-Make...


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

I appreciate your point of view on this Mr Happy:-)

I'll be sure to check out your Hub. I like the sentence...It is a year of choices and Power. It is!

Blessings to you...


Sage in a Cage profile image

Sage in a Cage 4 years ago

I love this hub! It's so good to read hubs which deal which mental health issues which are written by individuals with firsthand experience. I have treatment ressistant depression and have had a love/hate relationship with my meds for over 15yrs. Taking lithium long-term has really physically taken its toll on me - weight gain, kidney & thyroid issues... Ick! I found your hub really empowering..thanks!


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi there Sage in a cage,

I love the way you use the words love and hate for the relationship you have with your meds. Sounds like a very healthy relationship to me:-) Aren't all of the issues with Bipolar Disorder about that.

How to love an illness that can be so devestating and enriching at the same time. I applaud you for sticking with Lithium! I couldn't do that any longer than I had to.

Thanks for commenting with your kind words!


Jellybird profile image

Jellybird 4 years ago

Hey Escobana Your story is awesome and it could read just about like my sister's.her meds also made her gain weight until she changed her medication. But she has gone back onto lithium because she says it makes her feel better. She no longer feels the need to participate in every marathon now. I was always amazed at her medals, she has a 154. Thankfully I am not that extreme although I do still run wherever I go. i appreciate your candour.

peace +

Jell


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hey there Jellybird:-)

I'm happy to know your sister feels much better now. Many people with Bipolar Disorder maybe recognize parts of my story. I hope they do so they'll know there's more to life than just the illness.

Running is great by the way! When you do it in a healthy way, serotine comes free in the brain, making you feel happier. It also keeps us fit which is wonderful.

Glad you stopped by and left your wonderful comment:-)


anxietygoaway profile image

anxietygoaway 4 years ago

wow thank you so very much for writing ,i could not keep my eyes of right to the end ,good on you for moving,well done you go girl you rock......... thank u again for this post


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

You're very welcome!!!

Great to hear you kept reading with such an interest! Thanks for stopping by:-)


reza 4 years ago

It is a shame how we learn some important things the hard way. I used to be against medication and I paid for it real bad.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Reza,

So sorry to hear you took the hard way to learn those important lessons like I did. I hope you made it though:-) Just like me:-)


blairtracy profile image

blairtracy 4 years ago from Canada

I am sorry to hear that life has been so hard on you. But I am also happy at the same time to hear that you are alive and well. You are a very strong and admirable women. I recently had a friend commit suicide. He had been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder a few years ago. It makes me sad that not only is he gone. But I always wonder if there was something else that could have been done for him! Thank-you for sharing your story!


dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 4 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

The only person I know that is bi-polar is my daughters husband. I would not have known about it if he hadn't told me. He does have to keep on his meds and the condition did apparently cause the break-up of his first marriage. He is a nice likable guy and the marriage with my daughter has been well for several years. Anyhow, thanks for the information.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Dahoglund,

It's wonderful to read that your daughter is enjoying her marriage with a likeable guy. He obviously controls his illness which is a great gift for all of us who are diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.

Thanks for commenting and stopping by:-)


GlstngRosePetals profile image

GlstngRosePetals 4 years ago from Wouldn't You Like To Know

Such a awesome article! It really moved me for whatever reason of many as a mind twists through its processes. Im glad you found your key to a wonderful sanity. Med are both good and bad and i'm happy that you have found the good. Voted up and referal tracked facebook,redgage and twitter bound.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Thanks GlstngRosePetals:-)

Bipolar Disorder can be very interesting for all the creativity it brought to my life but being sane and happy is the best gift, my meds could have given me.

I highly appreciate all the links to my Hub! Have a nice day:-)


Coach Ellen profile image

Coach Ellen 4 years ago from Texas

Great hub! My daughter is 20 and suffers from Bi-Polar Type 2 disorder. She refused meds for years until finally her episode landed her at the doctor and then referred for psychiatric treatment. She started meds and after 3 years says she will never go without them again. Her quality of life has changed tremendously, she is in college and making better grades than she ever did in high school. She coaches preschool gymnastics and plans to open her own gym when she finishes school. Her life on meds is such a God send. Thanks for sharing your story.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 4 years ago from Valencia Author

Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read my Hub Coach Ellen:-)

I'm so happy for you and your daughter! Sounds like she's doing very well. I can only wish for her to go on like this and for you to stay far from worrying about her. Meds and stability can be as addictive as the highs of a maniacal episode.

The only difference is your quality of life. Blessings to you both!


Douglas 2 years ago

I love my medication because I want to live happy.

Thanks God, Jesus and Science, medicines are there for us.

If you have suffered for stopping once, or even did never stop, take the medication forever.

I stopped many times because my brain "went faster" and that was fun. But soon after stopping when I lost control of myself, there were no fun at all.

It requires 10 firemen to stop me. Believe me. It's no fun.


Escobana profile image

Escobana 2 years ago from Valencia Author

Hi Douglas,

Good to see you're very convinced about your meds. I'm glad they work well for you, keep you stable and make you live life in a happy way.

That's all we really need. A stable happy life with Bipolar Disorder without the rollercoaster ride we have to take if we stop.

Have a great weekend!

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