I am in a good place.
I wake up nearly every day and I feel refreshed. Focusing on positives makes me happy. In regards to some aspects of my life that are not ideal, I press forward, knowing that the situation is temporary and “this too shall pass”.
With the start of the new year, I have resurrected goals that I had the beginning of last year. I have powered through anxiety attacks to get back in the gym and yoga studio. Rising an hour earlier in the mornings to hike and walk with friends has been possible due to the very mild weather that we are experiencing in our region.
I am aspiring to step up my normal attire. Working in a more laid-back environment means that jeans and a flannel are completely acceptable. Wearing a dress, a nice pair of boots and taking the time to do my hair and makeup, make me feel simply, better. It helps me stay in that positive mindset, makes me feel good in my skin. I can tell myself, “you look pretty” and that makes me smile.
The weekends are now filled with time spent with family and friends, crafting, baking and socializing. The days of isolation, darkness and existing in a bleak place are something from the past. I am now living for the weekends, longing for that time to be carefree and have fun.
This all sounds amazing, right?
Why would I write a post about this? Am I just bragging? Sadly, no, I am not bragging at all.
Being a person that has been diagnosed with Bipolar 1, one needs to be very cognizant of changes in one’s mood. A slight variance could be nothing, but also could be a sign that trouble is on the horizon.
Per the Bipolar Caregivers website (http://www.bipolarcaregivers.org), signs of mania or hypomania may include, but are not limited to the following:
- Sleeps less
- Is more active or pursues more goals (has lots of energy)
- Is more sociable
- Is irritable and impatient
- Talks much more than usual or speaks very fast
- Can’t concentrate well or is easily distracted
- Has increased self-confidence, self-importance or optimism
- Has an elevated mood
- Is agitated or restlessness
- Thinks much more quickly or has racing thoughts
- Has lots more ideas and plans
- Starts doing more risky activities
- Has an increased sex drive
- Drinks lots more alcohol
- Has heightened senses (e.g. everything looks more colorful or scents are more intense)
As I look over this list, I have identified that I have eleven (11) out of the fifteen (15) of the signs. Wow, just wow…
Over the last ten years, my mood around my birthday has been mostly more manic, but there have been a few years that I was wavering between stability and depression. The whole “it’s my party, I’ll cry if I want to” was definitely part of my life. With my birthday fast approaching, it is appearing that this year will be a mania year.
So, what’s a girl to do?
How do you moderate your life when you are already in a spiral?
Although I see my psychiatrist at the end of the month, it may be beneficial to get in to see her within the next week or so. Catching a change in mood before it is fully in place means that it will be easier to balance the mind and get to a place of stability in a more expedited fashion. Handing over my credit card and disabling the “one click payment” options on several of my online shopping accounts would be in my best interest. I did share with my family, that my therapist was worried about my mental state and suggests that we keep a close eye on the mania symptoms. Obtaining support from a good support system is critical. Finally, ensuring I stick to a sleep regime that will grant me the amount of sleep that I know I need to best enable me to function is imperative.
Managing a mental illness is not always easy. Identifying that there is trouble on the horizon is very important. Asking for help is a critical action, although hard to do, that can make the situation so much more manageable.
#bipolardisorder #mania #hypomania #depression #anxiety #birthday #stability #socializing #crafting #baking #yoga #gym #resolutions2018 #pressforward #troubleonthehorizon #bipolarcaregivers #elevatedmood #birthdayblues #birthdaytime #moderation #psychiatrist #psychiatry #psychologist #psychology #hiking #walking #exercise #family