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This Is Me

I’m taking a page out of the bp Magazine for this month’s article. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with this publication or if you personally receive it. I have a subscription and when I get mine in the mail, I read it from cover to cover.

One of the sections is the “This is Me” page. It usually portrays someone with Bipolar Disorder and has him or her answer a series of statements. So, I thought, I’d do the same here to give you more background about me.

NICKNAME:
“PeeWee” or “Little Bit”. My mom and family named me “PeeWee” when I was a child because when I was tickled too much I’d have to go to the bathroom. My father nicknamed me “Little Bit” because whenever he’d ask me if I wanted more of something at dinner, I’d say, “just a little bit.” Hence, the name stuck.

FAVORITE TV SHOW:
Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and Once Upon a Time are my current favorite shows. I change depending on the time of the TV season and whether or not a new show comes along. I have been a follower of each of the shows from day one. I watch each for one overall reason: escapism. I enjoy being sucked into these fictional characters’ lives for just an hour a day and live with them as they face their conflicts. I support the good guys and hope that good will triumph over evil.

HOBBIES:
I love to read. I walk. I like to work with my container garden. But, that’s usually a last ditch effort to keep my plants alive at any given moment. I enjoy snorkeling while my husband scuba dives. My favorite place to snorkel is Maui. I have enjoyed flying stunt kites and would like to do more of it, although my favorite place to fly is the beaches, and they fill up fast here in Florida. Finding a long stretch of sand is rare now days.

MOST TREASURED ITEM:
My journal. I take it with me whenever I travel. I write in it constantly. It’s my lifeline to my most inner self. I may not write in it every day, but I want to know that it is with me in case I feel the need to express myself in some way. I add any cards I receive to it, and keep stubs from favorite movies. I even put in newspaper clippings of articles I find interesting.

I WISH I WERE BETTER AT:
Crafts. I’m not a crafty person and I really am in awe of people who can take a can, some pipe cleaners and cupcake wrappers and make darling flower arrangements. I couldn’t even fathom such a thing. Anyone who is a DIY person, I applaud you. People tell me I’ve been given the gift of writing. That may be so, but I have more than a gift of writing, I have an overpowering desire to put words on paper. Maybe that’s the same way for a person who can create crafty items.

BIGGEST INDULGENCE:
Books. I collect books. I have overflowing bookcases and stacks of books piled on every available surface in my home. Now that I have an iPad, I collect electronic books. I have so many on my TO BE READ list, I’m not sure if I’ll ever get to them all. But, I love books and will continue to collect them.

COPING STRATEGY:
I use the Wellness Recovery Action Plan. In it I list all my triggers, symptoms, and strategies for dealing with each. There is a list of all my medications, doctors, friends, and family all involved in my support team. My will, living will, and medical power of attorney are all there in one place so that if (or when) the time comes for hospitalization, all necessary paperwork is easily accessible. It’s a living-breathing document that is ever changing depending on treatments, symptoms, and triggers.

GREATEST LESSON:
That I am not in charge of my life, illnesses, or healing. God is. I walk with Him and He stays by my side. It is to Him I turn to when I make decisions or go into a depression. I attempted suicide in October of last year. God stayed by my side, talked me into calling my husband, and was there during my hospitalization. He helped me see the sign on the church across the street advertising a Neighborhood Ladies Class. I knew He wanted me to go. I wanted to go. I did and it was the best decision I ever made. My life has changed, knowing that if I let God guide me, I’ll never want for anything.

I’M GRATEFUL FOR:
My husband, my family and my pets. They all provide support in their own special way. My dog and parrot understand my moods and can be there for me like no one ever can. My husband knows me inside and out and can predict an episode before I accept it. My family supports me no matter what level I’m at in my Bipolar cycle. I am so grateful for their love and support.

I’M INSPIRED BY:
My beliefs. I know that God will not lead me astray. I know that my family loves me. I have a strong belief in myself, knowing that I have the tools necessary to maintain balance in my life.

This is me.
Vicki M. Taylor
Age: 51
Occupation: Author & Blogger
Location: Tampa, FL
Year Diagnosed: 2003
Diagnosis: Bipolar I

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