Up, Down, Left, Skitter
I’m not sure I can blame the increased dose of Depakote, but my fatigue levels are pretty bad right now. There’s probably some cyclical contributing factors as well, but man. I don’t want to move. I just sort of want to blob. Which doesn’t mean that sleep is as easy as I’d like, and definitely have had some weird even for me dreams crop up. Meh. *shrugs and yawns* I’m just glad that I was caught up on Bipolar Blogger Network things for the most part, though I feel a bit… sad? meh? well, some degree of minorly negative feeling that I’ve not been rocking the extended social media stuff for that as much lately. It’ll swing back. Hopefully.
Honestly though, I’m not quite sure where my mood is. I’ve been feeling irritations that I class as both related to depression, and related to hypomania. An example of the former is my need to constantly have some sort of game up, preferably a slow real time strategy that I can poke at in passing while doing other things. It’s a white noise of sort and provides me comfort and distraction. Usually, I’ll find one and stick to it for a couple of weeks or months in a half-assed fashion, and it serves that purpose well. I’m a bit all over the place with that right now, and well. I know the moment I start recognising the comfort of a rut, it’s in that moment I usually recognise that I’m in a depressed state or about to hit one hard. I’m not exactly rut-happy? I’m just… I don’t know.
As for the other irritation, it’s the irritation borne of the thin skin thinning further, the acidic blood burning and bubbling more harshly beneath. Of course, it’s not like it’s conveniently visible so people like my darling kiddos can see that they’re on the last flayed synapse of my last sputtering nerve. I’m mainly holding it together, which I’m proud of myself for, but that doesn’t make it any easier (especially in dealing with the smaller one, who *really* doesn’t get that I need a bit of space yet, bless her).
Still, whether or not the Depakote is to blame/to thank/whatever, the former is more prevalent than the latter. And I’d be lying if I said that didn’t worry me. I always forget just how severe my depressive episodes are until I am deep within them, rolling around in naked nerves and the poetry formed of filthy fridge magnets scattered across the bottom of the pit. Hah, and here I am putting in all sorts of purdy turns of phrase here — it’s a sign! Maybe. Hopefully not. No, just being silly and amusing myself, doot doot doot moving on MOVING ON. *cough*
Where was I going with that? No idea, honestly.
But yeah, if I am honest with myself, I am feeling a bit rutty, and I don’t know what to do. Even if the rut includes good things, like going out on a weekend with the family to go geocaching, even if it includes things I love like gaming and crafting, it’s all just sort of palled slightly. And yet, not — I feel the joy of it brighter than I ever did in the pre-diagnosis past. Mixed episode? Could be. It’s just so hard to say when it feels neither and both, and neither nor both. Heh, maybe this is what euthymia feels like? I’m not convinced, but what would I know. It’s been a long time since I experienced it on the regular, so.
Eh. I guess I’ll just have to keep dragging through the days and see where they lead. Eh, I know, not my usual little glimmer of cheer. It’s still there, but it’s buried under a heavy dollop of pragmatism. Pragmatism’ll take me further right now, I think. *nodnods* Still hoping things are going okay for all of y’all out there though!
Hey there!! This will sound simplistic, but do you think these feelings could be related to the season change in addition to the increase in Depakote? (Apologies if you already wrote about this recently and I spaced)
Apart from that, I remain impressed with you; even more than I was before. Why? Because you’re fatigued yet you still write eloquently (and your humor is intact). You don’t need to be unicorn farty with me. I love all your posts, whether or not they contain cheerful glimmers.
And yes, pragmatism is good…more than good. Essential! (head nods in agreement!)
please keep us posted when you’re up for it – no pressure!!
That’s a good question! I actually dislike summer and heat, so it’s usually a bad-to-null emotional season for me. I’m starting to finally acclimatise after living here for years (and we get a great cross breeze), so that helps keep me stabler. Which is to say, as long as I’m on the cooler side of life, weather doesn’t really affect my mood (having said that, I get excited like a small child at Christmas for a good thunderstorm, which aren’t that common here).
As for me and writing? Firstly, thank you for the compliment. It means a lot to me. Writing has been my constant defiance against my narcissistic parents and their insistence that I communicate poorly (one of the many reasons they are not a part of my life anymore). All the good grades I got in school on papers count for nothing against this bold dash across the sky where the world can see that hey, lookit, I make sense. So we have that history of blogging, as we’ve discussed in the past. I also used to be active on a Wheel of Time fan site that had a roleplay section (what things I actually thought to archive are here: http://www.wot.raeyn.com/). I’ve also got my two NaNoWriMo novels, which some day I will go back and read and edit and try to not cringe (http://www.digitalglitch.org/misc/An%20End%20to%20All%20Things.pdf and http://www.digitalglitch.org/misc/osf.pdf if you ever want free reading material of dubious quality!).
Heh, that probably makes me sound a bit prideful. I guess I should be proud — I’ve done a lot and still doing it.
As for the fatigue… it’s been a part of my life for 20 years. I’m hoping that the Mirena coil will help swing that back to a place where I have some functionality back, but it’s too early days to know for sure. And cheer… while I would be cross if someone tried to chirp at me like I chirp to myself, I guess it’s fair to say I find it helpful to attempt to keep a positive spin on things. As my beloved bat says, he *knows* that I am not in a safe place if I can’t crack a joke.
You are witty, regardless 😀
Aw, thanks. 🙂
Aww shoot, I hate it that you’re feeling rotten. I know what it’s like when I feel rotten. I mean, the way I feel rotten is not the way you feel rotten, because I’m not you, ya know. I’m sure ya know. How come you’re on Depakote, anyway? There are a shitload of new anti-crazies drugs that have just been approved. I’m sorry if that’s unwelcome and inappropriate. I’m in the middle of a VERY unpleasant mixed state right now, and I never know when I’m being obnoxious. Anyway I hope you start feeling better ASAP. It must be really rough feeling awful, with young children. I have been there and done that, and it’s terrible. Once I locked myself in the bathroom when my son was five, because he was feeling clingy and I was feeling Klingon. Meh.
When I saw my psych… two months ago? She was really concerned because she felt I was presenting really high, and wanted something to even that end of the spectrum out. As I don’t seem to be having any negative side effects to it, she lifted the dose to a therapeutic one when I saw her last (250 twice daily to 500 twice daily). And what the NHS will approve and use is slightly different to the US. For example, checking the latest in the market (Vryalar), Google quickly tells me that the NHS doesn’t consider it cost effective at current, so.
And yes, I can see the mixed. It happens, no worries. You’ve got a wealth of science and doctor and mom in your head and I get the gist of what you’re about. I’m not above locking myself in another room sometimes either, and bonus? The internal door between the kitchen and the rest of the house is a proper, soundproofing outdoor door. That’s my go-to if either myself or my husband needs a moment, because not being able to hear them when you’re on the precipice is the best.
But like I said to the lovely Dyane… the fatigue crap has been going on for 20 years. And like most Bipolaratti, my base pain level is a few notches above what is ‘normal’, so my perception of self-suffering is definitetly coloured by that… and of course, by the natural talent for minimizing our suffering so as to not come across as attention seeking.
tl;dr mental illness is hard. *chuckles*
But circling around, I totally had a question for you as a doctor! I’d read somewhere that one thing that works against most people trying to get mental health help is that they report their day to day experience rather than the extremities thereof. The piece I’d read (in passing and probably impossible to extract from my browser history) suggested that most health practitioners are expecting to be told the worst of it and to thereby make their diagnosis from that point, but that most people don’t know that and self-report on their ‘normal’ things (which of course, don’t come out nearly as representative of what a person is going through). It made sense to me when reading it.
Hmm, I’d forgotten that you’re not in theU.S.of A. Are you in the U.K., or Canada?
Your question/observation is a good one. Unless you are seeing someone weekly, as I most often do, (and my therapist then is able to observe my state of being), I find it helpful to keep a “brain diary” and just briefly jot down what’s happening on the inside. I have the “Journey” app for Android, and that is tremendously useful because if I am freaking out in Walmart I can just jot down what I am feeling and no one will know I’m not writing my shopping list. You can either print that or email it to your provider before your visit. I find it very helpful because as you know our ups downs and sideways just go on wherever and whenever….so, good about the door!
Say, have you tried lamotrigine? It’s also an antiepileptic and has made my life mostly tolerable, in combination with Lithium and various benzos, without which I absolutely don’t sleep, bad for cycling. In fact I’m wide awake now at 3 a.m., been ultradian cycling for days now, but tonight is when my dad died one year ago so I guess that would be natural. Yup, the L&L cocktail is what keeps me somewhat alive. I definitely understand why people with mental illness so often turn to drugs, just to get the fuck out of their pain for a while. I fantasize about it, just for something pleasant to think about, but I have lousy veins and opiates make me itch terribly, so I would not qualify as a junky
I am originally from Texas, but I am now a dual citizen and reside exclusively in the UK. I moved here in May 2007 whilst on terminal leave from the Air Force (I might’ve fibbed to them and said I was staying stateside for a bit, but never mind). I’d come here to live with my then-fiance, now husband of eight years (who is British, and it made a lot more sense for us to live here).
I’ve never gotten on with talking therapies, as my n-parents would misuse them. My one semi-serious attempt at talking therapy as an adult ended up with me being the therapist’s therapist, so now I tend to stick to writing about it, and talking to friends. Having said that, I’m far enough past the point of cutting out my parents that I might be able to get something out of a talking therapy, but I’ve not gotten around to pursuing it.
As for seeing my psychiatrist, she’s great, but the NHS is definitely overstretched and I’m still surprised I saw her again so quickly after the last appointment. Having said that, the Seroquel and Zoloft had been doing a pretty good job of keeping me even before I fell pregnant with #2, so they didn’t need to see a lot of me. Here we are 15 months from her birth and I certainly appreciate the level of concern at me being up for so long. If the Depakote evens that out, then I’m not going to complain much.
I’d not tried lamotrigine yet, but then, I’ve so far responded to the three drugs that I’m on. Well, I’m not 100% on the Depakote yet, but I’m not having negative effects either, so I’m happy to give it time to do its thing (especially if, as a bonus, it does anything good for stopping my occasional periods of migraines). Which I guess is to say that even if things aren’t perfect and magical, I remember how much worse they were and how much better they are. I definitely don’t want to hop med to med too quickly, so definitely doing my part to be patient.
I empathise on the sleep. Seroquel does such a bang up job, as I was reminded when I was off of it during my pregnancy. I’m almost religious about sleep, and if I preach one thing to my fellow Bipolaratti, it is the super importance of having a strictly set sleep schedule. Even when I wake up groggy and want to go back to sleep, I do my best to sit up and stick to said schedule. It as of late has been tempting to blow it off, but working hard to keep myself in line.