DISCLAIMOR: The very nature of medication is controversial. I am not a doctor. I do not have MD after my name. I am merely a woman living with Bipolar 1 Disorder. This is my experience with medication. These are my truths. In no way, shape or form will I ever give medical advice to anyone. Puh-lease.
You are here
Barrel: OK, who's next?
Me: Me, me, me!
Barrel: OK, get on in.
Me: Oh goodie. Lucky me, I thought I'd have to wait awhile to take another ride.
Barrel: Oh no. You've got an e-ticket. You can keep going and going and going...
February started with a wrist surgery that ended up being a much bigger deal than I anticipated, like a couldn't-hold-my-son-for-five-days-and-spiraled-into-depression-from-the-anesthesia kind of a big deal.
I’m writing from deep inside the rabbit hole. It’s truly a miracle that I’m even writing this, but I have something I really need to say.
I had a humongous Ganglion Cyst (I know, right? ewww) removed from my wrist a week ago. No biggie, right? I went under general anesthesia, which I’ve done a few times and besides some nausea, I’m usually fine.
This time, not so much. Ends up, general anesthesia interferes with bipolar medication.
To be clear, I don’t agree with the victim mentality and it’s not my standard default. When I blame others for my troubles, I’m not taking responsibility for my life and my choices. I always look for my part in any negative, or what I perceive as a negative, experience. I'm very rarely a victim. Unless I'm blindsided or assaulted in my adult life, I'm a volunteer.
Mania is the key defining characteristic of Bipolar Disorder that makes it so very special and unique from all the other disorders out there, so it’s not shocking that I get asked to describe what it feels like quite often.
Just the other day a well-meaning girlfriend – I say that without smarm – asked me about my most recent bout of mania as we were happily strolling down Ventura Boulevard.
“It’s like being really hyper, right?”
“Ummm, not quite.”
On March 5, 2005, I was diagnosed with Bipolar and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by a staff psychiatrist in my first, and what I hope will be my last, mental hospital. This diagnosis was the beginning of my real life, a life of freedom I never knew existed. Of course, it didn’t feel like it at the time.
The question is how did I end up on a seventy-two hour hold with seven years of sobriety and a seemingly perfect life? Stigma, ignorance, and my overwhelming need for acceptance.