BekrHello, my name is Rebecca, but most people call me Bekr. My family is from Costa Rica, but I was born and raised in Louisiana. Left when I was 19 for the Army. Was stationed in Korea, Germany, Arizona and did a deployment in Bosnia. Was active duty, then in the Reserves. Was discharged due to having bipolar disorder. Was diagnosed with Bipolar II, recently changed to Rapid Cycling Bipolar, ADHD, PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder. I have been through hell and back. It is a miracle that I am still alive. I have taken almost every medication out there for depression and bipolar disorder, and it took 8 years to find the right combination. My depression was so bad at one point, I went through 10 sessions of ECT, which was more traumatic than anything. I was/am a self harmer, I have gotten much better at coping so I do not do it as much. I have other chronic medical issues that I deal with, nothing serious, more bothersome than anything. I have a wonderful husband and 2 dogs. Once I accepted the fact that I had bipolar disorder, I was able to move forward and live the life I’ve always wanted to. And so here I am…

I always knew there was something “off” about me since I was a young child. I felt like I didn’t belong. My brain did not seem to work like my friends brains. It was a real difficult struggle when I was a teenager, I barely made it out alive. During my first hospitalization I was given the diagnosis of depression. I did not feel that was the proper diagnosis, but who was I to tell that to the doctor that?

I lived my life, struggling through… Some days were easier than others. I started taking college course in my early 20s, and came across a book by Kay Redfield Jamison: An Unquiet Mind. After reading that book, I knew.
Many, many years later I found myself at a psychologists office and she thought I had Bipolar Disorder. I was given many Personality Tests and such. After reading the results, she suggested I see a psychiatrist to give me a proper diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder. So I went to mentioned psychiatrist, and was given the diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder.

I was terrified AND relieved at the same time. I did not know who to turn to, or who to tell. I wondered if I should be ashamed of this diagnosis. I also thought maybe I was being punished for something I had done wrong. I had so many feelings, thoughts and emotions about this.

I told my family and close friends, thankfully they were supportive and did not make me feel worse than I already did. I bought books and did plenty of research on the topic. Nothing could have prepared me for what was waiting for me behind the door in my mind. Years of utter mental agony and pain. Years of erratic behavior. Years of alcohol and drugs. Years of promiscuity. Years of being admitted in and out of hospitals and suicide attempts. Years of denial and trying anything and everything to try to make myself feel better.

Finally after almost a decade, I was tired of living with all of this guilt, misery and crying all the time. I was able to come to terms with this diagnosis, and accept it. Once I accepted this diagnosis, along with other diagnosis that came along the way, I was able to move forward with my “recovery”. I am now living my life the way I want and on my terms.

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