Ups and Downs

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Just a cute picture of Max, cuddling with me

On any given day, I have ups and downs. The ups are where I’m flying and I can take on any challenge presented to me. My downs make me want to die. I just get overwhelmed and any decision at this point derails me and makes me want to break down and cry.

This is a normal day for me. Is this normal for a person who has bipolar disorder? I know that the ups are UP and the downs are death, but every day being a massive roller coaster ride of mixed emotions? It’s exhausting! I can’t catch up, I can’t keep the rhythm, and it changes so quickly.

I am seeing my therapist again on Friday. I have 2 weeks of data collected so we can find out what exactly is going on with me. She gave me a few assignments.

1)      Monitor my sleep. Don’t change it, just mark how many hours I get every day.

2)      Count my positive and negative thoughts every day. Ok, I haven’t been so good on this one, I don’t have an exact number. I’ll have to crack down on this one next week.

3)      Monitor my overall mood every day (agitated, anxious, happy, etc.) and if I was able to get some work done through these feelings or not.

4)      Be aware of thinking patterns. Don’t change them, just be aware of them. Also identify other people’s thinking patterns.

I have followed all these things, except counting my thoughts… I mean, I know a general ratio, as my negative thoughts are generally more than my positive ones. But I also like to think that 1 positive thought = 10 negative thoughts.

So, I’m excited to see what my therapist has to say about my data I collected, and I will work more on ‘counting’ my good/bad thoughts.

On another note, we are babysitting ‘Pittie’ again, and I just love him. He remembers our house rules, does awesome on the eCollar around our cats (I haven’t had to use it very much). He is such an awesome dog, and does wonderful things for Napoleon.

I’ll have to share our adventures next week.

Misdiagnosed

I saw my therapist today. I like her, she asks a lot of questions, and she really is qualified to help me unlike that other therapist. However, today was one of the most emotional days I have had in a while. Ups and downs, and then some news that I have been misdiagnosed all these years.

In Grade 2, I was diagnosed with ADHD. That was about 20 years ago. I didn’t know what that meant, all I knew was that my brain functioned at a higher level than everyone else’s. My brain thought faster.

Turns out, I DO NOT have ADHD, or I have this along with another mental illness: Bipolar Disorder Type II or Cyclothymia.  Both of these disorders are manic depression disorders that affect the mood.  My therapist is trying to figure out which disorder I have, but I don’t just have major depression (aka chronic depression), OCD and/or ADHD behaviors. I could also have obsessive compulsive habits, which many people have told me I do, but I would like a proper diagnosis. See, I was misdiagnosed before with chronic depression. Apparently, that is not the case.

I had an emotional day, and I’m ready to just collapse in a heap of confusion with my big yellow boy.

SilkFlowers

4-12-13 Here are some silk flowers I found at my therapist’s office

Oh, before I jump off – I found this poem on Darcy’s blog and it really describes how I feel sometimes. I sometimes have to fake it to make it.

I quite like myself
slouched over a television with a broken remote,
pale skin alive with glowing colors
at 3:33 in the morning

I think I am at my best
when I am hovered
over the kitchen sink just after dark
running hot water
over my raw fingers

I feel great
when I am sprawled across my bed
crying before I even wake up
sun pushing, unwanted,
through a dirty window

I am very happy with who I am
I say aloud in the car
all alone
while I consider driving into a tree
I am very happy with who I am

 

Roller Coaster

urlJust within the past day, I have gone from a decently content mood to the high peaks of Happy Mountain. When I get to be this happy, I tend to start waiting for the cliff of sadness to take over. Well, as it always does, it did. For no reason. I have no reason to feel sad. But I do anyways. STOP IT BRAIN!

I woke up early this morning and wasn’t able to fall back asleep. I took an extra long hot shower, decided not to do my hair, and make coffee instead. Mmm, yes. I do love coffee in the morning. Especially when I have time to add an extra kick to it! No, I’m not talking about vodka. Though Bailey’s would have been a good start to the day. I added cinnamon instead! It really kick started my morning. But I do still think Bailey’s would have been better.

Work was busy, so I was happy I was able to down a few cups of coffee in the morning before heading in to the office. I was working so much, I forgot to eat, so I had a late lunch. On my walk over to pick up an extra-delicious vegetarian sandwich at a deli nearby, I started to realize I have had a pretty good day so far. Which means… at some point in the future, I would feel sad. It’s a pattern that always seems to happen when I’m extra productive, or when I realize I’m actually feeling happy.

Maybe it’s a premonition of the future – because it always seems to happen. Or, maybe I make this happen by thinking it will happen. Either way, I know it’s coming.

So, I’m now on the lookout for signs of things that could ruin my day. It’s like I’m a detective, interrogating every person who might be hiding something, or an archeologist looking for treasures invisible to the unseen eye. Ok, that archeologist part was going a bit far, but I get pretty paranoid.

Work goes by without a hitch, and I realize I’m late for my training appointment. Great. This is it, I’m going to break down. I’m late, late, LATE!

No, this can’t be it. I’ll only be 5 minutes late, it will be fine. Ok, *breathe*

Got to my appointment 5 minutes late, and there was a time conflict. The client was having family over at that particular time, so I decided to work with Ryder on my own. No, he is not my only client, I promise! He is just my project boy, so I write about him a lot. He has come a long way, and I could tell today.

He still has a ways to go before he doesn’t need me anymore, but I’m so happy at his progress. Sometimes, it feels like he has gone backwards. Not this time!

We went on a walk by ourselves, so the client could chat with the visitors. This would have been relaxing, if it wasn’t so damn cold! The wind was fierce, and the bitter cold stung my nose and hands. But, I was determined to see Ryder’s progress within the last week. Honestly, each week, he’s marginally better. Slow progress, but he is a stubborn dog and also, my most challenging client. He is very strong-willed, and determined to be the leader. But, he is showing massive improvements, and I only had to give him a command once for him to obey.

I just kept remembering when we went to the outside social 2 weeks ago, and how wonderful he did. He was considerably less pushy than at the indoor social, and didn’t once try to get too close to a human. He tried to play with the other dogs, but he’s not quite ready to be off the leash yet in class, so this wasn’t going to work. Anyway, just reminiscing. Back to today’s adventures.

Once we got back, I was giving him some love on his ears, and I noticed he really didn’t like me touching his right ear. He started to mouth me, and try to get away from me. RED FLAG went up, and I checked his ear. Sure enough – ear infection. And a nasty one!

Later that evening, the client mentioned that his ‘lipstick’ was sticking out and hadn’t gone back in about a week! YIKES! Checked it out, definitely needs a vet. The family was asking me questions that I didn’t know the answer to (as I don’t have medical training), and called my awesome at home vet.

I don’t recommend any other vets because he has impressed me so much with how much he cares about the animals. Anyway, he said it was life threatening and pretty serious. He wanted them to take Ryder to the ER. Well, that wasn’t really an option, so we set up an appointment to have the vet come take a look-see tomorrow evening, in which I will be present. Ryder has some issues towards men, and as it has gotten better, it is still a concern.

This put a little bit of a cloud over my head, and another ‘warning’ as to the upcoming wave of sadness. Again, it’s like I have no control over these things, and even though there is nothing we can do right this second, it’s still hard to hear that this was serious and he needed immediate treatment.

Now that the session is over, I was on my way home, and the ‘end of the day droop’ started to settle in. Once I got home, it was like the shadow that was lurking so closely behind me, finally engulfed my entire mind, and I was lost.

Home is a safe place. I can be lost in my own home without feeling like I really am lost. I try to go to sleep. I stare at the ceiling. I play on my phone. I get bored, I find my husband – on his computer. Tell him I can’t sleep. He offers to snuggle. But I don’t want to. I want to blog. It helps. I’m ready to put this day to rest, and start over this roller coaster ride tomorrow.

Lonely_bench