Bipolar Disorder, Everyday Life, Uncategorized

The Unexpected Gift

short red hair woman blowing her nose
Photo by Public Domain Pictures on

The weeks leading up to Christmas I was stressing.  Stressing over this and that and everything in between.  I was stressing about the things that existed and the things that I was making up in my head.  I was stressing about what I had to do and when there was nothing to do.  Stress, stress, stress, stress.  I was not enjoying the peace and joy that accompanies the holidays because I was focusing too much on the what nots and the what coulds.  I was making myself miserable.

And then just like that, out of the blue, the most magical thing happened.  What you may be pondering?  Did I wake up and become aware of my mindlessness?  Did I snap out of it and realize the error of my ways?  Well, I did, but in a mystical way, that came with pain and discomfort.  Yup, you guessed it, I fell ill.  By Christmas eve, I was coughing and blowing my nose.  I was blowing so very much that my nose matched the color of dear Rudolph’s nose, bright red.  My face hurt, under my eyes, over to my ears, and behind my eyes.  I was tired and sick to my stomach.  I was MISERABLE!!!!

Per the advice and insistence of my mother, I went to the doctor and sure as snot, I had a sinus infection.  We started antibiotics immediately.  The challenge for me when it comes to taking over the counter medication, is that many conflict with the medication I take for the bi polar, so I really need to be careful.  I am extremely limited in what I can take, and to be honest the medication that I CAN take, is not that effective.  It is quite a frustrating situation, let me tell you.  Between the antibiotics, Sudafed and Benadryl (the medication that my psychiatrist stated that I could take), I moped around the house in my PJs dealing with the feelings of missing out on the festivities that were happening around me that I chose to skip so I could rest.

Now resting, that is a challenge.  It’s not that I was not tired, but that I could not breathe and when you can’t breathe it is hard to sleep.  And then on top of that, how am I supposed to wear my CPAP mask when I am coughing?  Drama I tell yah, drama.  I felt immense guilt as well that I was going to get others sick, and that was the last thing that I wanted to do.  I wanted to be part of everything that was happening, it was Christmas, but then I just felt so bad about being sick.  I kept telling myself that I WAS on antibiotics and therefore I was not contagious, if in fact I was contagious in the first place (because if it’s a sinus infection, are those things even contagious??) Bottom line, I felt like garbage and I was kicking myself for stressing out so much about so many things that in the long run did not matter, and I ended up getting sick and missing out on the things that I was stressing about.

I can not change what I did in the past or what is in place at this point (so the stressing out and the now being sick).  But I CAN change how I move forward.  I am planning to work much, much harder on focusing on the 24 hours ahead of me and that’s it.  No more future tripping.  Staying in the present and enjoying the moment that I am in is my goal.  Sometimes lessons are hard to learn, and we do end up suffering a little in order to learn our lessons.  I am a bit thick skulled and it takes me getting wonked on the head a few times for me to open my eyes and acknowledge what the truth is.  But, right now, I have a clear understanding, and I am in the process of changing my ways, for my health and for the health of those around me.

As we end this year of 2018, I wish you health and happiness, peace and joy to fill your days.

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