One of the things about needing medication throughout my life is when that medication needs to change, it becomes this big elephant in the room… where I know stuff isn’t right. I know that I’m not right.
A couple of weeks ago, I was diagnosed as Bipolar II. For decades, I’ve known that I suffered from depression. For years, I’ve known that I’ve had anxiety. Finally I let down my walls enough to be honest with my doctors and that has meant being diagnosed as bipolar. In the past, I didn’t truly understand what mania was… fuck…I am still learning what that is and how it looks for me.
So I was medicated for half of the problem, but not all of it. Now I’m on meds to deal with both sides of the bipolar that has it’s grasp on me. If you’ve ever been on mental health meds in your life, they don’t work like antibiotics. It’s not like you take one and 24 hours you feel like a new person… it takes weeks for you to feel the effects. And then you have to decide with your doctor if the dosage is correct or if you need it increased. Then wait a little bit more to see if the dosage is correct… and then you might find out after weeks that it’s really the med that isn’t the best fit for you…so then you spend a week or two weaning yourself off the med before you go and try another med.
It’s a rollercoaster to say the least. Add that on top of the rollercoaster that leads us to ask for help in the first place and it can be extremely hard. I know it’s hard on the people I love and care about the most as well. I’ve watched the different aspects of my bipolar push away people in my life for years (granted I didn’t realize that was what was happening at the time).
It’s sad. It’s scary. It’s lonely.