Keeping Your Emotions in Check

There is strength in understanding your emotions.

I haven’t always been able to trust my own thoughts and feelings.

I’ve had staunch thoughts and feelings on a particular matter, and a week later they’d already be irrelevant because my thoughts and feelings have done a 180 flip (or flop). Confounding. How can my perception completely shift? Bipolar has this capability. Continue reading “Keeping Your Emotions in Check”

Mental Health Day = Medical Leave

When I Just Can’t Cope

I’m currently on a brief medical leave from my day job because I just can’t cope. I’m trying to avoid a complete breakdown. Having bipolar affects multiple aspects of life, and maintaining a job is one of them. I just can’t seem to complete all the necessary tasks…at work or at home. My energy and mental capacity dwindles throughout day. I’ve received emails at work telling me where I’m slipping; however, I’m slipping more than they realize. I awaken at 4:45am and leave by 6:10 to avoid monstrous traffic, and I’m home again before 5:00. Then, I have more work to do, of course, because a teacher’s job isn’t just during school hours. School hours are for teaching and meetings, yet by noon I begin to struggle. After typical work hours, it’s time for more parent contact, lesson plans, grading, and ancillary paperwork. And, lesson plans are not just a lesson plan a day… it’s four lesson plans per day due to the types of classes I teach; that’s twenty lesson plans per week. Continue reading “Mental Health Day = Medical Leave”

I Swear I’m Not Crazy

Stigma suggests otherwise.

Bit by bit, I’ve become more comfortable speaking up about my own mental illness. People hear that term, and they immediately think, “Oh no! What should I expect?” and they take a step back. Then they hear “bipolar 2” and they seem to turn and scurry away from the scary unknown.

I swear I’m not crazy.  I’m educating. I’m advocating for others who struggle. I’m attempting to stamp out stigma. I aspire to prevent others from giving in to suicidal tendencies.

Recently, I’ve reconnected with old friends via social media.  They knew me once upon a time when I was just me…quiet, happy, had close friends, living life as a teenager in high school.  What will they think when they realize I have anxiety and bipolar 2? It scares me to my core that it’ll be another nice-knowing-you-but-see-ya moment. Continue reading “I Swear I’m Not Crazy”

4 Ways Bipolar Disorder Hinders Motherhood

Being a mom is what I always desired. To love and raise a child, mold him and impress upon him the love of life.  I was eager to provide basic needs to the more complex needs (such as discipline and instilling values).  Unfortunately, my son got the short end of the stick with me.

I suffer from bipolar 2.

Bipolar transformed motherhood into a monumental challenge.  Not only do I suffer, but my son has suffered as a result.  This causes me immense guilt.

As psychotherapist Diana Barnes says, “Depression is just wicked. It takes away the enthusiasm and energy you need to be a good parent. And on top of that, it distorts your thinking.”  Continue reading “4 Ways Bipolar Disorder Hinders Motherhood”

Stuck In the Sludge of Depression

Mental Mud

Over the past week or so, I’ve struggled with a prolonged depressive state.

Not the deep, suicidal depressive state, but one where I feel like I’m stuck in mud up to my waist and trying to move while I slowly sink. It’s cumbersome and frustrating and not pretty.

I don’t know when I’m going to “snap out of it,” and I become frustrated. I wish to force an upturn. The longer it takes, though, the more frustrated and anxious I become. Agitated, I wonder when I can feel better again. The numbness to what’s going on around me is fine for a while, but eventually it turns into “what’s the point?” I slide further down into my depression.

Difficult Tasks

Sooner or later when I actually do something around the house, I receive praise for having done it.  Don’t get me wrong; it feels good to be appreciated.  However, acquiring a gold star for something so menial seems silly.  Internally, though, I recognize the accomplishment for what it actually was for me. A triumph. Continue reading “Stuck In the Sludge of Depression”