I have bipolar Disorder. Wow, coming out as having Bipolar II Disorder is hands down one of the scariest things I’ve ever done. My mom had a suspicion, for years, when I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder and Generalized Anxiety Disorder a few years ago. I remember her pointing out to me that I was bipolar, but I thought she was just joking because sometimes I could go from ecstatic to suicidal in under 5 minutes. The ecstatic portion is known as mania, but with bipolar II, it’s just known as hypomania, where I’ve never experienced a full manic episode, but was close to it. I also don’t have manic episodes that often, but when I do, I’m very impulsive, can’t form full thoughts sentences without getting sidetracked onto another topic totally not related. Most times I don’t even notice until someone tells me to back up and finish the first story first. I just assumed my highs were my medications working, and a part of it is my medication, but the impulsive actions and buying things that I could not afford, and putting myself and my family at risk, was the Bipolar Disorder. When I have my hypomanic episodes, it’s scary because I don’t feel like myself. I feel overly happy, but not the “regular” kind of happy. It feels like I’m on some type of drug that speeds up my nervous system and it isn’t fun.
Having meltdowns one minute, and then the next I’m hysterically laughing is an imbalance that’s indescribable. It’s something you’ll only understand, if you experience it first-hand. It puts a turmoil on you and the people around you. They have to adjust to your mood swings and practically walk on eggshells so they can figure out what does and does not set you off. I was in denial that I had bipolar disorder and being put on the medication for it only made it even more real. I haven’t told anyone yet, so this is a pretty raw blog post that you all get to read for the first time. I didn’t tell anyone because I was ashamed, I didn’t want it to be real, but it is, and there is no hiding it. I don’t like to talk about it because it’s just a different side of myself that I can’t cope with, but have to learn to be patient with.
Getting diagnosed has helped me be more aware of my impulsivity that has gotten me into scary situations before. It has helped me be more self-aware of my mood swings and control my reactions to certain situations. Of course, the medicine is here to help, but I am in control of my own reactions and happiness. This recovery journey is getting harder and harder, and most days I feel like I’m going to relapse, but it’s okay if I do. As long as I can get back up and continue on. This isn’t the end.