Tag Archives: BD medication

A taste of my Bipolar Disorder challenges

Just in case the previous post has given you the idea that my life with Bipolar Disorder is a breeze,  here are some points to take into consideration:

  1. The meds I am taking caused me to gain weight.  A lot of weight.  Trust me,  you don’t wanna know how much.  And it’s not easy to get rid of.
  2. Never thought I would be actually meeting a dietician.  Me on a diet?  Bwahahaha!  Well,  I won’t be.  Which brings me to the second point.

  3. The meds I am taking suck even more, because now I am struggling with the onset of Diabetes.  Cuz,  you know,  I gained a lot of weight.
  4. But even worse,  certain meds that I need from time to time actually seriously increase the chance of getting Diabetes.  Hence the dietician in my very near future.

    I already have made certain food changes, but I need to make some more to combat further development.  No diet – that is temporarily.  Those changes?  They are for real and most likely for life.

    Truthfully – most changes don’t bother me.  Okay – giving up drinking dry,  red wine because the alcohol in combination with my meds make me depressed,  wasn’t fun.  But giving up chips (crisps,  for the British among you) and liquorice?!?!  Real.Bad.News.

  5. I am a night owl and have lived an irregular life since…. well,  forever,  I guess.  BUT.  Right now?  I would serve myself best if I would keep a pretty regular schedule.
  6. You know,  things like going to bed and getting up at the same time every day, taking my meds at the same time every day,  eating all my meals like breakfast, lunch and dinner at the same time every day and have regular healthy snacks in between to keep everything on an even keel.

    No big deal, right?  But,  for me, it is.  Cuz changing life-long habits is hard people,  really hard.  Also,  at heart I am a rebel.  I just wanna do things my way,  whenever I want to.  *sigh*  No,  change that to *very BIG sigh*.

  7. Having to cancel whatever plans I have,  because I ended up in one of my funky,  unruly,  unmanageable moods,  be it the up or down swing.  Can be pretty challenging for friendships.
  8. If you have a friend or family member with Bipolar Disorder,  please understand that we do this not on purpose. Truth is,  I hate to cancel plans at the last moment as much as the other party.

    But trust me,  very few friends can handle being around me when I am severely depressed or getting over-the-edge hypo manic.  Even in my hypo manic or ‘just’ depressed state I am pretty intense for them.  It is not fair to expect them to handle more than they are comfortable with.  Difficult and painful for both parties.

  9. Not being understood.  A few examples.  People not understanding why I was not diagnosed earlier.  People thinking that you can or should just ‘snap out of it’.  Or that you should use your will power.
  10. Believe me – if I had a choice in the timing of my diagnosis,  or if I could just ‘snap out’ of depression / hypo mania,  or if I could change it all by will power – I WOULD.

    The problem?  It doesn’t work that way.  The biggest problem?  The people who think they know how to deal with what I have,  but really don’t.

    Because after several years and hard work,  I am now well on my way of accepting my particular life-mood-swing,  it has become easier to deal with the fall out of point 5.  Unfortunately,  it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t hurt.  You know what I mean?

Even though there is a whole lot more to say about it,  this is enough food for thought for now,  me thinks. 😉

Any questions?  Please,  leave a comment.  I am very happy to try to answer them.

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B-day, Borsh, St Nick…. followed by sleep!

Last weekend I spent with many friends and with the youth group of my church.  It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed myself. 

Saturday afternoon I prepared Ukrainian borsh for twin-girl-friends of mine who were gonna celebrate their b-day Sunday afternoon and evening.  We have recently realized we know one another 25 years!!  Shock!!  (It makes me feel old, peeps,  seriously.  On the other hand:  another reason to celebrate which we definitely plan to do!)

With one of them I started college back in 1985.  Soon after I met her twin.  One and a half years later I moved in with my college friend.  How precious to have such longstanding and loyal friends.  We have gone through some major up and downs,  but here we are,  25 years and going,  and still loving one another to bits. 

In the evening at youth group we celebrated St. Nicholas – a typical Dutch and German national holiday where gifts are exchanged.  Usually we make rhymes for one another,  always teasing in a friendly way.  Also,  we used to ‘dress up’ our gifts to look like something else,  again to tease one another. 

One of the most popular thing to do was to make ‘poop’ from a store-bought type of cake we have.  You just add water and crumble it and maybe add some sirop to make it even stickier.  Inside the goo you hide the gift,  which is totally sellotaped,  so opening it is a total disaster.  Apart from those real ‘dirty’ jokes, depending on your creativity,  you can make anything related to that person.  Preferably something that has got nothing to do with the present.

Each person had bought a gift of € 5,- and made a rhyme.  Some were really good.  As all names had been written on little papers,  shuffled,  after which each had drawn one paper,  no one knew who had gotten who.  So while listening,  a lot of guessing went on.  After all gifts were unpacked,  I was impressed what useful things they had managed to buy one another for the € 5,-.  We made a round and everyone had a guess as to who had given them their gift.  That was a lot of fun,  some knew it exactly,  others didn’t have a clue.

Since I had officially joined the group after this evening was organized,  I was not a part of the gift exchange.  But that didn’t bother me.  I really enjoyed watching all the exchanges,  the relationships they have among themselves,  the teasing and laughter.  We had a good time indeed!

Sunday I helped my twin-girl-friends.  That was such a joy.  Since I have lived 15 years abroad,  I have missed so many joyful events and celebrations.  I also met some peeps that I don’t see too often and had some nice conversations.  Lovely!  The last ppl left about 11.30 pm and I helped clean up.  Then we chilled for a bit.  Finally I climbed on my bike while soft rain was falling and made my way home. 

In the past I would’ve gone to work the next day,  and the next, and the next…..  Yesterday I slept,  and slept,  and slept!!!  It’s no fair that something so enjoyable is so exhausting!!

It makes me wonder when and even IF I will ever get my previous energy level back.  Early 2006 I was first diagnosed with severe burn-out.  In actual fact,  looking back,  it had started Summer 2005.  So that’s over 5 years ago.  Shouldn’t I have recovered from that by now? 

Or maybe it is also related to the Seasonal Depression stuff.  After all,  these days I am making long nights.  Like about 10 hours.  Totally ridiculous.

Of course,  then there are those meds with their useless side effects of tiredness and the like.  Not much to do about that (apart from taking uppers!  ok, just joking 🙂 )  I am afraid.  But I really am fed up with getting so exhausted.  I am still feeling it.  Don’t get me wrong – it was totally worth it.  I thoroughly enjoyed it,  which is not always possible for me depending on what curves my BD is throwing at me. 

But it would be so nice not to have to plan my meetings,  outings,  fun-things,  volunteer activities etc. in view of  (mostly my lack of)  energy and need of recuperation. 

Does anyone with BD and or SAD recognize this?  How do you handle it?  Any tips?

Borsh picture courtesy of www.liveinternet.ru
St. Nick picture courtesy of www.sintplaatjes.nl
Garfield picture courtesy of http://s240.photobucket.com/albums/ff237/mareesme

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