So, I used to be a professional residential painter. I worked hard and earned decent money. For a long time I felt strong even with the bipolar. Life has always been tough for me but I ploughed through…until I didn’t. My past had brought many cycles of mania and depression. I just thought, if I am strong enough, I can do this. I was wrong.
I try not to talk about the fact that meds aren’t an option for me. Usually, when I discuss this, people think I am anti-meds. I wish they worked. Noway!!! My brain doesn’t use them like it should and it’s horrible. I tried them all for years. One particular time that I opted to try again, the meds actually sailed me right into my first real psychosis. Not a trip I would recommend. Anyway, short version, I went buck wild and lost my mind. My Doc took me out of work and I have not been right since.
Goodbye career. Goodbye purpose. Goodbye money. Hello HELL. I hated myself. I hated my brain. I hated everyone and everything. I felt like I was cut down in my prime. I was in no position to accept this and neither were my three sons. But my disease took control of my life for a long time. I could not help myself. It was bad. Real bad. I stopped all the meds. I stopped therapy. I stopped treatment. I gave in to Mr. Hyde and while he was sleeping so was I. My episodes got more frequent and more intense. I didn’t know what I was doing. I just knew it had to stop or I would die. I almost did die several times.
Fast forward and here I am 5 years later. I have spent the last 5 years containing myself and reading about my defective mind. I still can’t work. Sometimes all I can do is be present in each moment as I breathe and that’s the way it is for me. This is not what I call living. This is what I call the waiting. So, after much thought, I decided my life, though totally unmanageable, is worth more than my illness. I must accept it as an illness because that is the only way my brain will accept it. I stopped believing that I was worthless and I made an appointment and began to try
again. If I make it to even half my sessions, that’s progress for me. I am not doing it alone by any means. It’s been hard to let my old man take the wheel but I have to if I want to make this work. I want to thrive dammit! Thank God for this man who reached out to help me and has been rooting for me these past 5 years.
I am starting to realize that I must redirect my life instead of trying to relive my old one. I have changed and my bipolar has evolved. Great, NOT. But I am an “Ok, so what can I do to correct the issue”?, person. That’s what I’m doing today. I will take my time and do what I need to do the best I can. That is hope and hope means life.
Redirecting my life has become key as my sons are all grown but two of them suffer with my affliction. You want to talk about guilt? Guilt will run my life and destroy it. That is my sick mind. I feel like my head is out to kill my ass and I better suit up before it wins.
I’m getting used to being different. I’m seeing things for what they are today. When I can’t handle it, I don’t push it. The more I delve into myself, the more I see what I can handle and that’s cool because it can’t be any other way. Nope, not having it.
I’m not here trying to be a writer. I am here because I have bipolar disorder and I need to be here. I need to be here because I care. I care about me AND you. When I share and read, I am no longer alone. I can’t tell you how many times just one kind act or word has saved my life either giving or receiving. I am here to share and listen. I am here because I am worth life and so are you!!!