I’m exhausted. I’m overwhelmed. I keep feeling like I won’t be able to make it through the day, but I continue to push myself. I’m just trying to get through each day, one hour at a time. Every moment that I make it through is a huge accomplishment.
I suppose that since my husband is struggling with his mother’s cancer diagnosis and he’s worried about his brother, I feel like I need to be stronger. I know that if I were to say this to my husband, he would disagree. I know he only wants what’s best for me, but I can’t help but feel this way.
I pretend to be stronger than I really am, but pretending can only take me so far. However, with every passing day, I feel as if I’m getting worse. Every day for the past month, at least, I’ve thought about going to a psych unit; however, I don’t end up going. I know that I’m not going to do anything, but the thoughts keep running through my mind. I wish I could take a break from my mind. If only that were possible.
For more than a week now, I have had allergies off and on that are extremely annoying. I don’t remember having allergies when I was growing up, but then again, I don’t remember much of anything anymore. My symptoms tend to come and go. I’ve been really tired too. I took a two hour nap this evening, and I’m still tired. The allergies on top of the depression is making life even more difficult. I worry about taking OTC allergy meds, I’m not sure if they will react with the meds I’m already on.
Speaking of medication, I have been tapering off of a couple of my meds. I’m already off the Inositol. I finish taking the Mirapex Monday night, and I finish taking the Donepezil Friday night. I’m hoping that I don’t have any bad reactions by coming off these meds.
Clozapine (Clozaril) can be a frustrating medication to be on. You have to get blood work done every month just to be safe because the medication can have some serious side effects. I’ve never had any problems with the possible serious side effects from Clozapine, but I have had problems getting the actual prescription filled every month for the past year.
I go and get my blood work done (on time, like I’m supposed to), but the pharmacy I go to does not have it together. They always deny getting my lab results, so I end up calling the lab and having them re-send the blood work results. The pharmacy has even told me a couple of times that they weren’t there when the lab faxed over my results, which is why they don’t have them. That is complete crap. Even if my results were faxed over in the middle of the night, they should be there waiting for the pharmacy when they open.
Yesterday, I thought I found a new pharmacy. I talked to the pharmacist, and they were able to register me in the Clozapine database; however, they could not accept blood work results from the lab. So, it looks like I’m going to be staying at the same pharmacy I’ve been struggling with for the past year. I guess, I’m just going to have a sit down with the pharmacist and see if I can get everything figured out.
This is the first time I’ve written in over 5 weeks. My depression is continuing to control my life. I’m at the point in my depression where I don’t care about much of anything. I could stare at the wall most of the day and not care. My family has been extremely supportive and caring. Honestly, I wouldn’t have gotten through the past many weeks, as well as other times, without them. My mom, aunt, and husband have been wonderful and are always there for me to lean on.
I saw my psychiatrist today and we agreed to taper off a couple of my medications. That was my goal for that appointment. However, no matter how good the changes could be, they also bring up the unknown, which is scary. I’m nervous as to what the med changes could do to me. I know that mania is a possible side effect, but I’m willing to try going off of meds to make sure that I’m not on anything unnecessary.
I’m going to do my best to keep blogging on a regular basis. I know that it’s a great way for me to express myself, plus I always feel good afterwards. I also find other people’s blogs useful.
I had another ECT treatment today. It feels like I’m going to have to do this forever. I stopped doing it at one time, and my depression just worsened quickly. Then I had to restart everything. When I restarted, I had to do 2 treatments a week for 4 weeks (at least that’s better then 3 times a week), then once a week for 6 weeks, and since then I’ve been going once every other week. I’m not so sure how well it’s working right now. My depression pretty deep, and my suicidal ideations are almost constant. Even when I try to ignore them or think positively, those thoughts are still there. Even though it doesn’t feel like ECT and all of my meds are working, I know that if I stopped either one of them, either my depression would plummet horribly or I’d go into a major manic episode.
Over this past week, especially the past couple days, my dystonia has gotten a lot worse. I brought it up to my psychiatrist this morning before ECT. He asked me several questions that I answered, but he never gave me a solution. My husband reminded me to email him about it, which I did as soon as I got home. He asked me for a list of all my medications, prescription and OTC, which I gave him right away. Now I’m just waiting for him to call something into the pharmacy for me. Hopefully, whatever he prescribes will help this go away. I can’t stand it much longer.
I wonder how much my medications are working. I take 11 meds plus I do ECT once every two weeks. This does not include the medication I take for my physical health. I take so many meds, it’s hard to tell which ones are working and which ones need an adjustment. I feel like something needs to be adjusted, I just don’t know what. My medications are as follows:
Clozapine 100mg – 4 pills at bedtime
Cogentin 1mg – ½ pill in the am, 1 pill in the pm
Cytomel 50 mcg – 1 ½ pills in the am
Donepezil 10mg – 1 pill at bedtime
Inositol 500mg – 1 pill daily
Lithium ER 450mg – 1 pill 2 times a day
L-Methylfolate 15mg – 1 pill in the am
Memantine 10mg – 1 pill 2 times a day
Metformin 500mg – 1 pill in the am, 2 pills at bedtime
Mirapex 1mg – 1 pill 3 times a day
Tegretol ER 200mg – 1 pill in the am, 2 pills in the pm
These questions are from Therapy Bits: Who asked to hear my experiences with bipolar symptoms, how I manage them, and how they effect my life.
I don’t remember most of my experiences due to the side effects of ECT. The biggest, most memorable experience was in 2009. My doctor tried taking me off my medication slowly, because he thought that it was possible that my mental health issues could have been caused by my drinking and using (I’m now sober 13 years). We found out the hard way that I really do have bipolar disorder.
I went into a major manic episode. It was so bad that I couldn’t work. I worked for home for a while, but even that got to be too much for me to handle. I was unable to handle my life due to my manic and then my depressive episodes. I moved in with my mom because I couldn’t manage my own life and I needed someone close to me to do that for me. I’m lucky that I had someone in my life that was willing to help me out.
My bipolar disorder turned my entire life upside-down. I’ve been on disability since 2009, and I can’t seem to get things back together. I continue to go through episodes and I have to deal with the side effects from the treatments I use. This biggest side effect is memory loss and confusion, which are from ECT. I have both short-term and long-term memory loss. I tried stopping the ECT treatments after I had been doing them for quite a while, however, once I stopped the treatments, my depressive episode came right back. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to stop ECT again; I’m too worried that I’ll end up going back into another manic or depressive episode.
I’ve been dealing with my bipolar disorder since I was 13 or 14 years old, and I know that it is something that I’ll be dealing with for the rest of my life. Going to a psychiatrist, a therapist, and taking medications is second nature for me. I actually take 13 different psych meds, which is a lot to manage. At this point, I go to ECT once every 2 weeks. I used to go to a bipolar support group once a week, but I stopped going a while ago. I still talk to and see some of my friends from that group, which really helps. This blog has also helped me manage my bipolar symptoms.
I take a lot of medications; most I take daily, and some are taken as needed. I keep very close track of my medications and when they need to be refilled. It’s a big task, but I make sure I’m on top of it all. I have a problem filling my Clozapine prescription every month. I have to do monthly blood work. The pharmacy won’t fill the Clozapine without the blood work results. Filling this prescription is an issue every single month.
Every month, the lab forgets to send the pharmacy my results. It’s always a huge hassle. Even though I filled out the paperwork, I still have to convince the lab to send my results over. I shouldn’t have to call the lab every time. At least I’ve found a way to make the phone call easier and shorter.
I refill my prescriptions about a week early (they can be filled from approximately 3 to 7 days early depending on the script). If I start early (at the 7 day mark), then it’s okay if they run into a problem. I learned this the hard way. Running out of prescriptions is not fun.
I have so much to do lately, but it’s extremely hard to get any of it done. The main reason for the difficulty is because I’m having a hard time remembering just about anything. The ECT is causing a lot of memory loss, despite the fact that I’m on two different medications (Memantine and Donepezil) to help my memory. I can’t remember what I’m supposed to be doing, what I have done, or even what I do or don’t enjoy doing.
I miss my memory. You don’t always realize how important something is, until you don’t have it anymore. I wish I had the ability to respond to people accurately. I wish I had the ability to know what I truly wanted in life. I wonder if there is anything that will help my memory come back. Will these medications ever kick in?
Yesterday ended up being an okay day. It was my birthday, and I got to spend my day with a friend and the night I spend with my husband.
My memory is still really bad. I tend to forget things that I’m told anywhere from less than an hour to a month or so. It’s making my life very difficult. I’m already taking two medications for Alzheimer’s, Memantine 5mg and Donepezil HCL 5mg, but they don’t seem to be working yet. I’m not sure when they’re going to start working, if they’re going to work for me at all.
I’m doing my best to write everything down in my new bullet journal. It helps me organize my days, weeks, and months. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to keep track of everything. In order remember everything, I have to write it down as soon as I’m told. If I don’t write it down right away, then I’m sure to forget it.