What was going on when you were first diagnosed? Do you remember your symptoms? Do you remember where you were and what happened? Why or how you ended up seeing a Doctor or Psychiatrist? Was your family involved? Or were you alone?
I first noticed that I saw the robins on the ground and thought they were demons. They were jumping all around and pecking at the grass for worms. I had a six year old at the time. Then I saw a great big mountain in the distance from my window in my apartment and I knew it was MT. ZION. If you don’t know what Mt. Zion is, it is supposedly the place where God the Father lives. So I would stare and stare at it, till the sun went down and then stare at it before I went to college. Oh did I forget to say I was in my second year of College. I was 33 at the time.
My mind told me that God the Father was talking to me as Well as Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit and the Devil. These were the voices that I heard in my mind, and they talked to me all the time. They could talk to me thorough other people as well.
I was taken to the police station from college, as they thought something was wrong with me at College. I was in my math class and I kept tapping the top of my desk with my pencil killing demons, but the professor asked me to stop it and I didn’t. She asked me twice. So the third time I got up and left the class. Someone stopped me in the hall way but I didn’t know what they were saying. It was another professor. I went to the library and proceeded to open all the windows by putting books in the windows because it was so hot. Every window was open. I sat down and pretended to read a encyclopedia.
Then came the police. They tried to escort me out of the College. I didn’t want to go with them, so they took me by force and put me in the back of the squad car. My dearest friend was watching. They took me down to the police station. Then a man who I knew was the Devil put me in a tiny box., which was the jail cell.
Well I could go on and on, but suffice it to say, I saw a Certified Mental Health Professional and it was dark in the room, so it was scary and she asked questions I didn’t understand and then I went back to my cell. Eventually I was taken to the Big State Hospital in Washington State. WESTERN STATE HOSPTIAL. There, they gave me adivan to calm down and I was taken to a doctor and asked to remember three things of which one was an apple. It was the only thing I could remember. Then I was put to bed…
The next day, my friend came to a meeting with two psychiatrists and they told him I had Schizo Affective disorder. Bipolar one disorder came a few years later. He said he would take custody of me and we left. My mother had taken care of my six year old son while I was gone.
This is what I went through and what I remember when I first became ill. I’m sure we can all remember that first time in the hospital. Though many of us might not be able to remember exactly what went on. But maybe some of us can. Do any of you every remember feeling afraid, or were you fearless?
I think it’s important to remember how we started off so we can see how far we have come. For the beginners, the people who are first diagnosed with Bipolar, I have alot more to write about that in another blog. For the old timers, I think you will relate when I talk about mania and driving from Washington to Oregon and getting lost and ending up in a mental hospital.
I am currently on anti depressants. It took three tries to get it right. You have to be on the right medication. Everyone had a right to recover. Recovery IS Possible. I am also a Certified Peer Counselor. People need support. Where I live there isn’t a lot of support. However I do have a case manager and a psychiatrist who do help me. People can use the Community for support. There are a lot of opportunities for people to volunteer or even get jobs, or go to College or High School. We have the ability to live normal lives. It has taken me 11 years to become stable. And now I lead a different life. So try not to isolate. Call that Friend. Call your family members. Go sign up for that class. Check out that volunteer job or real job. Try that new instrument you have been dying to try playing. Start painting again, or wring poetry or that book you started. It all starts with little steps, recovery. But it CAN BE DONE. Until Next time, Keep Getting Better. Kathleen