Now you may well be wondering why I haven't written so much about the actual bi-polar diagnosis yet, or even got to the point of diagnosis? Its for a reason. A diagnosis can be made on say, 2 episodes of mania in 2 years, or a few short bouts over an extended period of time. So it can actually take a while to capture a patient in a full blown episode and ensure that it is definitely mania and not just an over excited and gregarious disposition. Also mania doesn't always last that long, and some people actually love the feeling and choose to not take medication, advice or action. They stay in it and wait for it to pass. For most of us the hardest thing to cope with is the crippling depression. Saying this though, if you ask any of my friends or family, they will tell you that I am a high speed, energetic person, prone to days running around like the Duracell bunny.
From my initial referral interview with my CPN up until the end of my self esteem CBT course, I have regularly discussed my "rushy" episodes, when they happen and what happens. I kept a diary for a while and they were unpredictable, but significant enough to warrant attention. When my CPN and I first talked to the psychiatrist Darren about it, he dismissed it out of hand. He felt that it was probably a side effect of the high dose anti depressant or taking too many stimulants. In my case that means only coffee. I knocked booze and party drugs on the head a very long time ago. As I mentioned, the run in to my initial contact with psychiatric services involved me being 100mph in the head and verging on suicidal. Sadly the professionals didn't see me like this, all I could do was explain it after the event when I slowed down a bit. I talked to my new psychiatrist about it and he felt that it did need further scrutiny to see if there is a difference between my general upbeat, rather too bouncy and annoying self, versus something even more fast paced and detrimental to my well being. I'm not keen on the waiting game and to be honest, even though I am "well" I don't feel quite right.
So here is how the land lies. I'm doing CBT self esteem course, I am up to 3 days a week in the office, one day at home, taking my anti depressant medication and seeing my psychiatrist every 6 months. It seems ok but then things start to get a little stressful. As I said, something just didn't feel right and during the May things started to go a bit wrong.