What to expect when reading bi-polar wife

Thoughts and feelings of living with bi-polar as a wife, mother, and person in the world.

Monday, 20 February 2017

It's been 10 years - lets have a review!!!!!

I realised yesterday that it's been pretty much 10 years since I entered secondary care services and first experienced a psychiatrist, cpn's and the whole system of mental health provision. In hindsight, which as we know is a beautiful tool, I could never have imagined the journey I have been on. When they told me at my initial assessment they'd like to keep me in services for a little while to assess my symptoms,  I assumed the whole cycle would take 6 months to a year. I had no inkling that 10 years down the road I would still be turning up at the cedars centre (Not a gentle old peoples home) and sitting in the crappy reception with it's water dispenser and oddly inappropriate magazines. So lets have a recap!

I have taken:
Valporate semi sodium

I have received:
12 sessions of Understanding depression cbt
12 sessions of Understanding low self esteem cbt
3 sessions of exposure therapy (trying not to avoid bleach, glass, knives, boiling water etc. in daily living)
3 sessions of mindfulness (But had to stop as I was so sedated by quetiapine I kept falling asleep; I did come off that stuff.)
5 sessions of family intervention with Ian
1 session of Schema and domain work
5 days respite during crisis
Crisis team intervention twice
A cpn on and off for 2 years - 3 different people
Recovery college courses living with bipolar, anxiety management, comedy and creative writing
6 different psychiatrists
3 manic episodes lasting up to 4 days

What I have done:
Not drank alcohol
Not taken illicit or unprescribed medication
Not actually attempted suicide even though it's been a bit dicey a few times
Asked for help and done what was suggested by professional people
Fought discrimination and stigma
Tried to be unafraid and rooted in faith
Been rigorously honest (Which doesn't always go down so well when your intrusive thoughts tell you to do incredibly random stuff and you share it with your husband!)
Attempted optimism and hope in the darkest of times
Forced myself to parent, show up to the business of living and try really hard to have a recovery centred, solution focused life
Smashed the odd plate and used the C word (By the way Christian friends that wouldn't be the Christ word sadly :) )
Reached out to others and tried to express how it really is for me in the hope that I might be understood

Sometimes I wonder how on earth I have got through it, survived it and am still here to tell the tale. I got fat, got thin, got fat; my hair fell out; I slept all the time then couldn't actually sleep at all. I got a rash that they thought was life threatening.  I had a psychiatrist who told me I was really ill and needed to do nothing except sit and get well, but wrote on my notes that I was in remission and needed no help. Someone told me how to hang myself properly (That was the day of the guy who had tried to remove his eye with a spoon), have been held and prayed for and felt love that is so strong it has kept me wanting to live. I have run about a work office like an insane person and heard voices.

My mood barometre is bouncy and flutters erratically, but in amongst the peaks and troughs, I am living and engaging and attempting all that boring normal stuff that some people take for granted. Never under estimate the power of the ordinary. And never doubt that God isn't in the very fabric of your every breathe and heartbeat.

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