I’m back… I disappeared from my blog for more than 2 months. My last post was on November 4th. I said that I needed break, and apparently I took one. My depression has been rough for quite some time, but luckily it has gotten a lot better. I’m fortunate to have family and friends that are understanding, supportive, and honest with me. I’m trying to take everything just one day at a time.
I’m a bit out of it right now because of the ECT treatment I had this morning. I will get to stop ECT fairly soon. In December, we decided to slowly stop the ECT treatments because I finally started IV Ketamine (which is working very well!). I will write about that soon, hopefully sometime this week. I’m trying now to wear myself too thin.
I believe that I’m fortunate for having so much support from my family and friends. However, I have some people who want to understand, but they don’t. They ask me questions such as, “Why are you depressed?” or “What’s wrong?” and I have no clue how to answer them. I’m depressed because I am, not because of something that happened (at least most of the time). I honestly feel that people can’t understand bipolar disorder unless they experience it themselves, and I don’t wish that upon anyone. Nonetheless, I’m lucky to have people in my life that support me and try to understand. They are open to learning and they listen to what I have to say.
I decided to take a break from blogging this past week. I tried to write this past Sunday, but my mind was already in vacation mode. This past week has been wonderful. I love the time I get to spend with my mom. We only had two beach days, but we’re happy no matter what we’re doing, as long as we’re together.
I also get to spend time with a friend of mine who drove three hours last night in a storm to come see me. I hadn’t seen her in probably about two years. She will also be taking me to the airport tomorrow, so I don’t have to take the bus. I’m so happy to see her.
When we were going to bed last night, I noticed a leak in the ceiling. It was getting worse quickly, and there was a crack in the ceiling. It looked like the whole thing was going to fall down. That was not fun to deal with at 1am. Luckily, it did not fall. Someone came to the cottage to check on it this morning, and they will send someone over to fix it either today or tomorrow.
Today is our last day of vacation. I have a lot of packing to do. I’m not sure if everything will fit in my suitcase. I did buy a bunch of gifts for people. I actually got half of my holiday shopping done. It’s probably time to start packing.
Do you ever feel like you need to act as if you are “okay”? Most of us have people in our lives that understand and support us, but there are also people who don’t get it and don’t care to. For example, at my last job, it took a lot of effort to keep my mental health a secret. I’m not ashamed of my mental health, but I didn’t want to spend time trying to explain it to people and I don’t want people to look at me differently.
There are also a lot of people who don’t consider depression, mania, or other mental health issues to be a “real” problem. Some people think that if you can’t see it, it’s not a real issue. Well, I have learned that issue is their problem. I’m lucky to have the support and understanding from family and friends. My friends are those from my previous support group. We shouldn’t have to pretend we are okay when we’re not. That’s what our friends and family are there for.
I don’t think I’m going to try going to another meeting today. They are so much busier on the weekends, and I’m not ready for that yet, at least not alone. I’m not giving up; I’ll go on Monday. I’m glad that I started going back to meetings. I missed the community and friendships. However, for now, I have lots to do while I’m home. Cleaning and packing is a lot of work.
Yesterday’s ECT seemed harder than usual, but my husband says that I say that every time, I just don’t remember due to the memory loss from the treatments. Last night, we went to my husband’s best friend’s house. We just played some card games. It was difficult, but I pushed myself through it. I think it’s important to hang out with people and have fun. Maybe it’s not the best idea to do it on a day that I had ECT, but I know that I will always find a reason not to do things, so last night, I just figured why not.
I went to another meeting last night, but I didn’t like that one as much as I liked the one on Wednesday night. I will have to try out many different meetings until I find the one that’s right for me, I have hope. Even though I didn’t like the meeting, I stayed for the whole thing. The important part is that I keep trying. I won’t be able to go to a meeting today because I have another ECT treatment, but maybe I’ll try again on Saturday. I have to keep putting myself out there. I really want to have that community that I used to have when I was going to meetings all the time. I can’t give up.
Yesterday, I went to my friend’s/sponsor’s house so we could drive to the AA meeting together. Just the thought of going to a meeting was causing an anxiety attack. I ended up going to the meeting with her and her husband, who helped me first get sober. When we got to the meeting, my anxiety picked up again, but my friend helped me through it.
There were several people who know me. They all wanted hugs, which was difficult at first, but it got easier as the moments went on. It was really nice to see most of these people. Only a couple of people asked me where I’ve been. I did my best to answer them by saying, “Not here”, but for one person it didn’t work. I just said, “I’ve been busy but staying sober.”
We sat on a bench with our backs to the wall (my friend picked the seats and she knows me very well). My friend sat on one side of me and her husband sat on the other. I was very fidgety, had racing thoughts, and at one point I apparently stopped breathing, so my friend suggested we go outside for a moment. I was afraid that someone was going to call on me to speak, and there were lots of people who kept looking over at me. Everything ended up perfectly fine.
In fact, I’m thinking of going to another meeting today. I know what it is that I have been missing from the meetings, I’ve been missing the friendship and community. I’m thinking of going to an earlier meeting today, at 4pm, so it will be a bit smaller (hopefully). We’ll see how it goes. I’m just going to take it one moment at a time.
I’ve been having a hard time staying in contact with friends lately. I think it’s my bipolar depression that makes me not want to connect with people; even when I want to connect with people, it’s a difficult activity. It takes a lot of work to stay in contact with people. Talking to people, whether they are family or friends, often feels like work, even when I’m talking to people who I want to talk to. It maybe something similar to emotional detachment, or it could be a reaction from my PTSD due to fear.
I do my best to stay in contact with a couple of people, such as my husband and mother. However, it gets harder and harder as time goes on. I’ve always been such a talker, so I find it weird that talking to people is so difficult for me. I notice that as time goes on, I talk to fewer people. Especially my friends; I let go of them when I’m struggling because it’s too much for me to manage. While I separate myself from them, I’m thinking of them often. When I’m doing better, I then try to reach out to my friends. I’m lucky enough to have friends and family members understand what I’m going through and they don’t judge me for separating myself from them.
My day had started out rough. I was feeling extremely anxious about restarting ECT. So meeting up with friends really helped me feel a little bit more at ease. I know I should get together with friends more often, but it’s not easy for me. My depression tends to take over, making it difficult, at times, for me to leave the house at all.
I met up with some friends last night that I know from a support group I used to go to. It was hard to get myself to go there, but I was glad I went once I arrived. It’s nice to talk to and spend time with others that understand what I’m going through. We shared thoughts and stories. I was even able to laugh and smile. It felt great to do that.
Today started off bad. I’m having problems with my Interstitial Cystitis, which is my bladder disorder. This is not the way I like to start off the day. IC causes pain, anxiety, and other problems. Oh well.
However, I will be going to visit a friend later today, so that makes my day better. It’s a friend I met from my old bipolar support group. It’s so great visiting with someone who understands exactly what I’m going through. I just have to get through each day one moment at a time.