One day I went into a store and bought a different color toothbrush for each day of the week. I was so excited that I went to the mall and bought clothes and shoes, whatever I wanted. Of course, I charged it all. When I got home that day I showed my mom everything I bought. I realized I spent about $1000 in less than 1 hour. My mom did not share in my excitement, she was really upset and took my card away. This is an example of one of the many manic episodes I have had since being diagnosed with Bipolar when I was in my late 20’s. I am now fourty one years old.
As a young woman I could not figure out why some days I would have more energy than others and be up for 2 days without sleep. Then other days I would cry in bed and not want to face the world. To me what was weird was some days I would feel this change throughout the day as well. I would put a smile on my face cause that was what people were use to and at night I would cry myself to sleep. I had no idea what was wrong with me. One night I came home and after having a fight with my boyfriend at the time I was so depressed I did not want to live, so I took a bunch of muscle relaxors and said goodbye to myself. All I remember is black and waking up with such a bad headache the next morning. I knew then I needed help, I was hospitalized and that is when I learned I was Bipolar and put on medication-lithuim and some anti-depressant. Before, being hospitalized I started to cut myself as a way to cope.
I finally realized that this illness is not going any where and I can live with it and be successful still or let it consume my life. After another stint in the hospital and several changes in medication, I have decided that I am STRONGER than this illness and I have taken the success route. I am seeing a counselor and go to group meetings and I have stopped cutting.
It is not an easy route, but I like challenges and the obstacles that do come with this illness help me become stronger each day!
Do not let mental illness destroy or take control of your life, use it to help others know they are not alone there is help out there! I have had many success in my life and I believe this illness has made me more of a special person!