By: Laura Sanscartier
…it pours. Or at least it does in my case. I bet it does in a lot of cases out there. I wish I could meet each and every one of you and give you the biggest hug.
What am I talking about? Multiple diagnoses, often called comorbidities. It’s when God or the big unicorn in the sky or whomever is running things decides to give a person not one, but two or three or four illnesses at once. And we’re expected to live with the consequences. We’re expected to juggle the medications. We’re expected to go to multiple doctors’ appointments, sometimes in one DAY, to figure out how to work out living a life with all these things mushing about in our bodies. It’s exhausting. It’s frustrating at the least, and maniacally infuriating at the most. I often find myself getting worked up over the sheer volume of it all.
In my case, I have Bipolar Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. And they are beasts. My medications are numerous, my therapy is constant, and I am forever trying to learn new ways in which I can manage my life while my head tries to thwart me at every turn.
But I am not going to lose this fight! (Or as is said in “Hamilton” I am not giving away my shot!). I am using the medication, therapy, and coping skills to build a life that includes work, a marriage, and a healthy family/friend social calendar. It’s not an easy thing, and some days I wish I could just curl up under my weighted blanket and dream the world away, but it’s not to be. This is the life that has been carved out for me, and I will make the best of it. I make sure to take my medication faithfully, I go to therapy every week, I check in with my family and friends on a regular basis. I like to read, watch Netflix, color, do word searches, and laugh with my husband as some of my coping skills.
Do you have multiple diagnoses? What skills do you use to handle them?