Bipolar Chronicles- Death

The first time I dealt with death is when my Granddaddy died when I was 6. We found out about his death on the way home from a family vacation from up north. My mom got in the back seat and told my sister and I so we were prepared when we got home. I never got to say good-bye the reason he died was because of a doctor error so it was unexpected (as most deaths are.) I didn’t cry and I wouldn’t look at pictures of him for at least a year. I never went to his funeral and I don’t regret it. My parents got a book about death to help me understand but I didn’t so they got me a dog and his name was Buddy. I loved Buddy so much but then they told me he ran away. (When I got older I found out he was hit by a car and died. My dad buried him on a dirt road somewhere.) I would come home from school and ask about him everyday and nothing. When I cried about from what I was told they think that is when I finally cried for my granddads death. (We don’t tell our daughter that animals ran away we just say they died.) I love you Grandaddy.

Who knew what would happen 2 years later. It was February of 1993 and we are all sleeping when my mom gets a call/knock at the door (I can’t remember which) letting her know my dad was in an accident at work and was at the hospital. He was there all through March. I know my mom tried her best to take care of us and stay with daddy and it wasn’t easy for her. Athens is 45 minutes to an hour away and she was constantly going back and forth. My granny and my grandma helped take care of us while my mom was in Athens with my daddy. I never understood how she did that or why she didn’t just stay home with us until my grandma got sick. On March 25, 1993 my daddy was supposed to come home from the hospital. My mom had one of my friends parents pick us up and they were watching White Men Can’t Jump (I can’t watch that movie to this day.) and she came to drop us off at home. I remember how excited I was when I got out of the car. I ran up the ramp they made on the porch for daddy until he could walk good again and the bed was empty. The hospital bed was empty and even though I knew already my mom told us. He died in surgery due to an air pocket/blood clot I don’t remember which one now. My mom sued the hospital and the doctors which I never understood because no matter what happened it would still never bring him back. I remember when everyone came over to our house bringing food and giving condolences and love to our family. I didn’t go to his funeral either. I thought by not going to their funerals it wouldn’t make it real. I went to a birthday party instead. I love you daddy.

When I was 12 or 13 my nana (my mom’s grandmother) died. She was an alcoholic and not really involved in our lives very much until she moved in next door. We would go over to her house but it was always stuffy and hot, she never really spent much time with us. I don’t have much to say about her because I don’t remember much. When she did die I remember someone telling me they were sorry for her death and I said, “Why you didn’t kill her?” And ” I didn’t know her well anyway.” To think at 12/13 years old I was already so jaded by death that I completely made myself numb. There is a funny kind of morbid joke about my Nana’s death. My grandma brought her back to Canada to spread her ashes and when she got to the border they asked if there was anything she would like to declare and she said, “My mother is in the trunk.” It still makes me laugh.

When I was 15 (yes this keeps going.) my Nanny died. ( my dads grandmother.) I am just numb to everything at this point, it is almost to the point where I don’t even care I was happy to see family we hadn’t seen in awhile. My Nanny was a sweet lady one thing you could always guarantee on a hot July day in Georgia the weather outside was cooler than the weather inside her house. She had cancer on her nose, tongue and somewhere else. I always liked visiting my Nanny she was feisty before she broke her ankle. She drove herself everywhere in her big purple car even in her 70’s. She was always going but then she broke her ankle at church and her age caught up with her. She had the coolest garage and back yard. I loved playing out there with my cousins. I still miss her sometimes. I try to find pictures to show my daughter of her. My sister was closer to her than any of the other great grandchildren.

When I was 17 my granny died (Dad’s mother) She too was an alcoholic, but I don’t resent her for it anymore. I understand now how easy addiction is and how you would rather numb the thing that is hurting you instead of dealing with it. When she was really sick in the hospital I was at summer camp and I remember calling home and no one answering and then calling my moms work and being told she wasn’t there and I knew something was wrong. We came back from summer camp early and I got to see her one time again before she died. Her funeral was the first one I ever went to. I saw her in the casket and then remember why I didn’t want to go to funerals. I was never completely sad about her death because she did drink herself to it. Whenever I hear the song “Whiskey Lullaby” I think of her. She was a good person other than her drinking and I know that more so as an adult. It is sad how it takes all of that to realize the truth about people in your family. I knew that for her I was hard to look at because I look liked my daddy (and acted like him sometimes). I always said I was the forgotten grandchild. (This is when we cringe.) My sister was the oldest grandchild, my cousin who is 3 mere months younger than me was the first grandson and my youngest cousin was the baby and I was just in the middle somewhere. My husband came to her funeral wearing a suit he borrowed from his uncle. I remember my sister had these amazing things to say about her and while they were true that wasn’t how I remembered her, she was an alcoholic who was embarrassing to go out with in public, always had a screwdriver in a Gatorade bottle, almost completely burned cigarettes because she was drunk, falling in the fire, a nuisance and then a bit of hatred because I never understood why we weren’t enough to keep her from drinking. I wonder if she knew how much I disliked her at the time how ashamed of her I was. I feel horrible about it now. I know she can hear me when I tell her I am sorry for resenting her so much and I knew why she drank so much and I wish I understood more when you were alive to help you. I love you Granny.

Now lets fast forward to 2017 and I am 33 years old. We got a bit of a break in the middle of death when my grandma was sick. She’d been sick for awhile but she was a tough woman and survived a stroke, heart bypass, drs that sucked she was a fighter, but I remember when my mom called me crying saying they had to intubate her and I called my sister and rushed up to the hospital. This is when I learned how hard it was for my mom when my dad was sick. I called out of work just went on leave and stayed with mama the most I could. I took my meds late came home randomly to shower and see my daughter and my husband but mostly I stayed at the hospital with my mom. I wanted her to go home and do things she needed to do knowing someone was sitting with her. My aunt and uncle from New Hampshire came down and while that was a complete cluster fuck they sent grandma home. I stayed with her and mama to help as much as I could. It wasn’t just because she was my grandmother it was also to help my mom deal with this. She’d taken care of my grandma for many many years by herself. I was there when she took her last breath and then helped my mom and aunt clean her up with the nurse before the funeral home got there. I saw way more than I needed to and that fucked my brain up. I tried to help do everything I could so it was all on one person. I even had a Priest come out and do her last rights before she died. They weren’t practicing Catholics but I felt this would ease everything and I do believe in God so I felt it put everyone at ease. We had her service at the local community center and once the dust settled I couldn’t go back in her house. I just couldn’t and I think it is hard to this day for people to understand. I watched her die in her living room and helped take care of her after she was dead in the room. It really fucked my head up and now 2 years later it still fucks with my head. My daughter has pictures and things of hers that I hide because I can’t deal with it. My daughter knows where to find them and not to show them to me. We still talk to my aunt and uncle in New Hampshire and I am glad my daughter had a chance to meet them, but the whole ordeal is something that is still processing and until I am ready I really don’t want to talk about it too much.

This is the conclusion my brain doesn’t process death well. I have random moments when I bring someone back up and talk about a memory with them, but my husband knows not to push it with me and to let me share when I am comfortable. I tell my daughter stories sometimes and she loves them and one day I hope I will be comfortable enough to share more of them. This almost felt like therapy but again I probably need a therapist.

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Bipolar Chronicles- Mania

Mania or manic defined – A manic episode is not a disorder in and of itself, but rather is diagnosed as a part of a condition called bipolar disorder. A manic episode is a mood state characterized by period of at least one week where an elevated, expansive, or unusually irritable mood exists.

Mania/Manic -For some with a grandiose, elated mood, a manic episode is a pleasurable experience. They feel very good about themselves and engage in pleasurable behavior, like spending money or having sex. … For some though, and sometimes within the same manic episode, a person feels extremely irritable with all those around them

Why did you get a vocabulary/psychology lesson? If you aren’t familiar with mania this probably won’t make much sense and if you want to learn more about it for yourself or someone else you must first understand the root from which it exists.

My mania is like a house fire wrapped in a tornado stuck in a hurricane. I am bipolar type 1 which means I am more prone to manic episodes because when I’m holy shit I am up and in my mind I am accomplishing all of these amazing things but in reality I am doing nothing but tearing apart everything around me. I black out when I am manic about 99.73738% of the time and for anyone who thinks this shit is fascinating you obviously never dealt with it before. My blackouts aren’t like oh you passed out and went to sleep, nope they involve breaking any and everything in my path, screaming, swearing, punching doors and walls, trying to stab my husband, begging for and then tearing the house apart to find my medication because when I’m manic I want to be high so I want that Xanax (those damn blue pills.) I am also convinced that Xanax is the cure for everything. My manic looks like an episode of cops (especially if I don’t have my teeth in.) all we need is a double wide in a trailer park. (I grew up in a double wide btw and I also lived in a trailer park until I was 5 (I think I am probably wrong.) also trailer parks aren’t what you think the one we lived in was nice. We always had a lot of kids to play with too. So no shame there.) Mania is scary and they’ve recorded me before because I black out and don’t remember things and every time I want to watch it I want to vomit. It makes me physically sick to see all the damage I cause. There really isn’t much you can do once it happens you are just stuck in that spot until it passes and it doesn’t always last days or week. We have proven this theory on more than one occasion. We call those episodes which rapid cycling. Rapid cycling is a pattern of frequent, distinct episodes in bipolar disorder. In rapid cycling, a person with the disorder experiences four or more episodes of mania or depression in one year. So here is a new term for you. I rapid cycle a lot the longest manic episode I ever had lasted 3 months in you guessed it 2015. I keep telling you that was a shitty year. Most of my rapid cycles in with me lock in the bedroom with the lights off and ceiling fan on you. They wear me out quickly. There is a lot of adrenaline and emotions but when I sleep and wake up I feel better and usually apologize for the damage I’ve done even though some of it is permanent and their are too many scars to fix it. I am hoping to avoid rapid cycles for awhile but if not there will definitely be a post about it.

Bipolar Chronicles- Support (this isn’t another my husband is wonderful post)

The biggest thing about having a mental health is having support which comes in many forms and sometimes from people you would never suspect. So no this isn’t me gushing again about how amazing my husband is (we all know he is like a saint.) but my support is large and comes from many places like those of you who read my blog and Instagram. Your words of encouragement mean so much to me and the likes and follows on my account make me smile especially when I am having a rough day. Let’s talk about support:

-My best friend who unfortunately had to go through the shit storm that was 2015 with me even though we hadn’t been friends that long she still stood by me the entire time. I was so nasty and hateful towards her so many times and every time I apologized she said, “I forgive you.” She said it so fast without blinking an eye, there was no thought or hesitation she just forgave me every single time I pushed her away or said hateful things that hurt her. I hated her for awhile and saying it now makes me sick to my stomach. I hated her because she was always happy and understanding. I hated her because I was jealous of the type of friend she was able to be and I could never return it to her. I hated that no matter what she was always there because sometimes I just wanted her to go away. I tried to push her away so many times but she never budged. She would text and message me everyday and I wouldn’t respond she is persistent because she never stopped. I think back now to all the people who would run away but instead she stayed and was able to withstand the tornado I was stuck in.She is a true example of a good Christian and an amazing friend. If you are lucky enough to know her keep her in your life good people like her are hard to find.  In case you are reading this I love you. I love you for the amazing person you are, I love you for never giving up on me and for standing beside me through everything for every reason I hated you, I love you for now and I know I’ve told you this many times but I just wanted to say it again.
– Facebook groups- These are a bad idea and after being kicked out of 3 I would advise you to stay far away for them. Older women can be extremely petty more so than younger woman. I was in the first group and became popular/hated because as I will later find out the majority of the women in these group did not have any mental health issues they just wanted to bitch/attention from random strangers on the internet (insert hypocrite with a blog) They also wanted to cause problems where there weren’t any and if any of you are reading this and remember any of the 3 groups I was in you will remember that I told you that you never win if you play dirty and that is why all of you had a fall out you created problems that weren’t there. You also need to not lie about having DID because it is a serious illness and almost impossible to diagnose so to all of those bitches please suck my dick. Just don’t promise it isn’t worth your energy
– Tater- If you are friends with me on Facebook or seen post on Instagram I have a friend I call Tater. Where did Tater come from? I have no idea but it just works so I call her Tater. I’ve only known Tater for almost 2 years but she saved my life and we’ve never met. I live in Georgia and she lives at least 500-600 miles away. We met on one of those Facebook groups (the only good thing to ever come from it.) It was 2017 and I was manic and suicidal. I kept going live on Facebook while I was popping pills and drinking whiskey (that was the smartest thing I ever did.) and on the last one I took a bunch of pills and she called my husband. This woman who at the time new me for a couple of months blew up my husbands messenger, phone and whatever else she could to get in contact with him because I passed out and I don’t know what  would’ve happened if no one knew what I did. After that we became twins and instant best friends. We are there for each other in a way that is hard for other people because we share the same illness. It makes our friendship hard at times because two bipolar people can offset the other, but we make it work and just like every relationship I am in with people it is complicated but I love her and hope to meet her one day the person that saved my life.
– Anonymous 2- I have to limit these two because of other privacy reasons but I love both of them. Anonymous 1 was the very first person to read my book. I have a great deal of love and respect for them. They also knew when things were going bad and would deal with me in a different way. They were a security blanket for me and even though they aren’t in the same area anymore we talk all the time and I know if I ever need something they are there. This person saved my life multiple times and also would call bullshit on a few things I did. They are one of the biggest influences in my life and it is amazing how in such a weird circumstance we met and became friends. Anonymous 2 is the same thing. I want to say more but I can’t. Thank you both! I love you more than words can ever express.

I am so blessed to have such a large support system because it is something hard to find. I wouldn’t be where I am without them.

Bipolar Chronicles- medication

I made a list of every anti psychotic, antidepressant, anxiety, mood stabilizer I could think of and when I hit 20 I just stopped because I know how high the number will get then there is how many different doses of that medication I was on. PLEASE DO NOT MAKE COMMENTS TO PEOPLE ABOUT HOW MUCH MEDICINE THEY TAKE. THERE IS NO SHAME IN TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF. I can remember most of them and I have listed it for you below. My medication process has been horrible. I have gone through 3 different insurance companies and with none for awhile. I do realize that this medication works better with therapy but I don’t like therapy so I just take meds. It may not seem like a lot 20 different prescriptions but really it is, see each one wasn’t a time shot and that was it we went back and forth on dosage over and over again when that one stopped working we weaned off of it onto another one. It is a never ending cycle of figuring out which ones work together and then praying that you don’t build a tolerance for it. Per the FDA I am maxed out on the medication I am currently on so if stuff starts to change I have to go through the process again and I hate weaning myself off of medication especially benzos. The pain of withdrawals to me is like someone slowly pulling off toe nails. Every medicine has a story and a memory those benzodiazepines are going to have the best stories.

  1. Lexapro– I despise this medication. I think it should be taken off the market it is absolutely horrible and my psychiatrist from the Psychiatric hospital who diagnosed me incorrectly was a pill pusher and every time I told him I felt worse he kept upping the fucking dose. When I stopped seeing him I just stopped taking it all together which made me manic. You will see a manic trend continue. When I stopped taking it he in a mere 2 months had me taking 50 mg a day and we started at 10 mg. He was an asshole and a pill pusher. I was suicidal the entire time I was on the medication and my doctor just didn’t listen or care he kept trying to put me back in the hospital. This entire time with Lexapro was extremely emotionally and mentally exhausting. I was just diagnosed so everything felt like a nightmare.
  2. Klonopin- I started again at .25 mg and ended at 4 mg because it just stopped working. I started abusing benzodiazepine with these.
  3. XanaxThis is going to be a long and emotional journey. Klonopin and Valium didn’t work and yes I took them together and he prescribed .25 mg Xanax take as needed. Who knew it would start a 5 year journey with dependency and addiction. There will be an entire blog dedicated to my Xanax issues. .25 mg came to 2 mg ir and 2 mg er. You don’t ask to be addicted to anything. I never took Xanax and said, “This is fun lets fuck the rest of my life, money and almost my job to my benzodiazepine issues.” If you think that is how it works kindly go fuck yourself with cactus.
  4. Ativan- I can’t take Ativan it makes me manic. I have Ativan to thank for the hospital visit. I went to the ER for anxiety and they gave me Ativan it was on a Friday by the time Monday came around my husband was exhausted trying to keep my ass out of trouble. There are stories and some are really funny like “sleeping” and jumping up running around naked, trying to leave and naked to go to work. I also called my boss consistently from about 2 am to 4:30 am to tell them I wouldn’t be at work the next day. (They knew that already but I apparently didn’t know that part.) They did play along until my husband took my phone away. These are the same reasons I can’t Ambien, (the ambien was not legally prescribed to me.)
  5. Halcion- These tiny blue fuckers were my absolutely favorite to overdose on. They are strong sedative and I never actually took the FDA recommend dosage when I had them. I had .5 mg and would take 4 or 5 at a time because being numb felt better then anything else.
  6. Haldol- This was a temp medicine in 2015 when I was having psychosis issues. It works but kind of zombie me out. I was in a drug induced psychosis.
  7. Restoril- Helps me sleep. It is a sedative. I’ve been on it for about a year now and when I run out and CVS won’t fill it because they suck. I can feel the differences.
  8. Lamictal– Old faithful; Lamictal and I have a long history together but it’s been the only medicine consistently helped with my moods (especially now since I take as directed.) I’ve been on Lamictal for about 3 years maybe a little longer. I started at 25 mg and now I am at 400 mg. When you face start Lamictal they tell you if you get a rash you need to go the ER immediately because it can eat flesh or some fucked up shit. When I tried to die by suicide in 2015 I would go days without taking my Lamictal and then I would take 600 to 700 mg at one time. The fact that after any of these stories I am still alive is amazing. So your mood stabilizer doesn’t work if you don’t take it correctly. It’s been good to me though and as it keeps working I will keep with it but the day it isn’t weaning myself off of it will be a bitch.
  9. Lithium- It was like having the fucking flu. It made me feel horrible. I tried it for a short while at a small dose but I had bad reaction.
  10. Seroquel- Started off with a low dose 2 years ago and now I am maxed out at 700 mg. You can get high from it (don’t get high) and it is the only thing that helps me sleep.
  11. Fanapt- Antipsychotic never worked kept it because of insurance causes memory lapses and is some strange shit.
  12. Geodon– This was a very short lived medication. This medicine had something to do with the “Affordable Care Act” which is pure bullshit. I paid $125 a month and it didn’t cover my doctor and the majority of medication. We had to adjust meds to they would be covered by the insurance company even with insurance I was still paying over $120 a month for medicine. My dr is awesome because I lived off samples for about 6 months. Geodon didn’t work. It was a crappy medicine that I had to be weaned off of to start a new one.
  13. Thorazine- These pills are currently my new best friend. I have so many problems with dreams and they have helped and been a major improvement to my sleep and dreams.
  14. Valium- It was good for snorting and that was about it.
  15. Trazadone- My fucked up asshole hospital psychiatrist prescribed these with Lexapro because he is an idiot. I seriously think he printed out a degree from online because it takes a true idiot to prescribe medication the way he did.
  16. Nuvigil– It taste horrible. It doesn’t matter if you have water in your mouth and when you swallow. It is for people with narcolepsy. They gave it to me to help wake me up because it is so hard for me to go to sleep. I used to take it with 3 20 ounce Redbulls and then I kept dealing with manic and psychosis issues.
  17. Provigil- See Nuvigil same thing dosage of 500 mg mixed it with energy drinks fucked up my brain. I also want to point out that I am not responsible with medication.
  18. Risperdal- Don’t remember much about it. This is one of the transitional medications because of insurance.
  19. Latuda- This medicine was prescribed to me because of insurance reasons. I was on it for a couple of months until my insurance changed again. I didn’t like it and
  20. Prazosin- I am on this for the second time the first time I was on a 5 mg dose with Lexapro and Klonopin, Now my smart dr has me on 2 mg to help with nightmares. They also give it to men with with prostate issues. It kind of works but I think the other pills with it make it better.

If you made it through the medicine history then you know this is just the tip of the iceberg for psychological medications. Every medicine is different depending on the person but this is my “LEGALLY” prescribed medication. I would love to hear you stories too.

Bipolar Chronicles – Foreword

I will start with this and even as conceded as it sounds it is the truth. I was not meant to live an ordinary life and I honestly haven’t. I was never meant to work a 9-5 and have a simple life. There were gifts given to me writing and this illness. This illness is a struggle everyday but I found my voice to help others and so here I am in the early morning hours so excited to get this started. I know there will be a piece of me in every topic that hurts to remember even the terrible horrible awful thing I’ve mentioned before (but that one may take a bit longer to write.) I also know that this can change my entire life but I am willing to risk it. When I talk about people unless it is my husband or Tater they won’t be assigned a name or a gender. It is to protect those people even if I feel like they don’t need to be protected. I may quote people that will make you stop reading or not be able to take me seriously, but sometimes these quotes sit well with me for different reasons. There is a method to my madness and I hope you can follow along.

These aren’t in any particular order some of them randomly appear as they come to mind. There is so much I want to say and putting it all in words is hard. I know it might anger or upset someone but you have to remember that if it isn’t “what you think happened” it’s all a matter of perspective. There are parts of my life that I remember and pictures to go with it but there are parts I tried to forget but I will talk about those too and whether you like it or not you are all about to become my therapist. I am hoping doing this will help the fucked up dreams I’m having.

I feel like my mind is trying to tell me something, but I can’t figure out what it is.

“But the more I wrote, the more I understood myself and why I had made the choices I made, and that was the real jackpot. I learned that dreams don’t work without action; I learned that no one could stop me but me. I learned that love is stronger than hate. And most important, I learned that God does exist. He and/or She is right inside you, underneath the pain, the sorrow, and the shame.” Roseanne