Recently my seven year old was rushed to the emergency room. In the past two weeks this kid has been poked with needles, had ultrasounds done, been seen by numerous doctors, and is scheduled for more tests to figure out what has caused her medical issues and how to go about treating them. When our children become ill and we’re feeling helpless, we have to dig deep to hold things together not for only that child, but for the rest of the family as well. I am finding this quite difficult to do. Speaking with my own doctor about what’s been going on, he has upped my own meds a bit to help get through this time. I’m fighting the shame and guilt of needing to be medicated to be there for my family right now. I know that part of me is bringing these feelings on myself, but it’s difficult when at the best of times bipolar disorder can get in the way of being the mom I want to be. I’ve always been someone who needs answers immediately and will catastrophize events that occur, or for that matter, don’t occur. Waiting for weeks for my daughter to be seen by a specialist has me triggered quite a bit. I find myself doing my own “research” and then thinking of all of the worst case scenarios. Of course I don’t discuss any of this with my child, and she doesn’t see the part of me that breaks down, but I can’t help but wonder; how do I keep myself together?
I need that support system in my life so that I can be brought down out of a manic frenzy brought on by my own racing thoughts, but once I am brought down, I can keep it together. Yes, I have my moments like most parents would, bipolar or not, but I think something occurs when our children are ill. The power of a parent’s love, and fear, can pull me out of even the darkest depression. It amazes and confuses me how there are so many times that this disease has effected me to the point where I have been completely reliant on others just to help me make it through the day, yet when it’s time for someone to be completely reliant on me, I’m there for them no matter what. This gives me hope and makes me think that bipolar disorder will never get the best of me. Now it’s just time to find those happy moments to focus on to pull me through, not just the scary ones. I honestly believe that we are stronger than this disorder, sometimes we’re just so low that we forget that. I need to hold it together and I will, not just for my daughter, but for myself as well.