Stuck!

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I have a good life. I have a wonderful partner who loves me to death. I have a good home to live in and I’ve been able to improve it and add to its beauty, especially thru my love of gardening and what I’ve done there. But I’ve also added to the inside of the house and it feels more like mine instead of one I just moved into 4 years ago. I have good food to eat and a nice car and clothes and all I need to survive and be happy. But I’m not happy, and it’s driving me mad.

Or maybe I’m already there. I can’t seem to stop my brain from telling me that I’m a worthless piece of crap and I should just kill myself to make the world a safer place from idiots like me. It’s nonsense I know and I’m not a bad person. But this Bipolar Disorder really has taken hold of me right now and it won’t let me go no matter what I try to do.

I’ve been diagnosed with this dreadful illness for almost 18 years now and sometimes I really think I’m getting much better. I guess I am in many ways. My counselor and psychiatrist both think I’m doing well and treat me like I’m into recovery and on my way to feeling better. But it’s just not true. I’m still a mess most every day lately and it’s getting very challenging to live in my psyche.

I’m still in the Underworld despite the fact that I usually seem to come out of it around the Spring Equinox. I did some as I started to see the plants begin to bloom and grow. That helps me a lot to see Life arsing again and fulfilling it’s promise of beauty and continuation of existence. It’s so obvious to me that Life will find a way to continue and things happen as they do without our input or actions.

I have so much going for me I can’t understand why I’m so messed up and so full of suicidal ideation that I spend time every single day lately thinking about how to kill myself. I won’t of course. I couldn’t do that to Louie and my friends and family. I know this but I don’t know what to do. I’ve tried so many of my tricks to get my mind to shift out of this mess I’m in but I’m not having much luck. I’ve written a lot here on how I use certain ways of thinking to change my thoughts but right now it’s all bunk to me. Nothing is working.

You’d think I’d be on anti-depressants or something but I can’t take them because they make me crazier than I already am and have put me into the hospital more than once when I’ve had a bad reaction to them. They hurt me and I long for a pill or something that will change my negative self image to one that is more in line with reality and lets me enjoy my life again.

I know it’s terribly hard on Louie to see me go thru this. We talk about it often and he helps me so much just by listening to me and letting me know he cares. He saves my life more often than he knows. I’m so lucky to have him in my life and without him I’d probably give in and just off myself. I can’t seem to find my Joy button anymore and it hurts so much. Depression is a real physical disease and it Hurts to be depressed in your body as well as your mind. I’m already in pain from injuries I’ve sustained in my life and my dose of pain killers would kill most people.

So when you add in the depression it adds itself to the pain of my physical body it becomes an overload and I can’t seem to maintain. I fake it a lot. I think most people think of me as a positive person trying to make the best of a bad situation and that’s probably true. But it feels so phoney and fake to me to always have to pretend to be OK when I’m really not. It’s still too scary for me to come out about my Manic Depression in many venues and so I suffer in silence as so many of us do.

I don’t tell my neighbors, usually, what’s going on or my friends even. I don’t wanna bother them and have them turn away from me like so many have in the past because of this illness. It’s caused me to leave so many situations that just caused me distress and fear and led me to worse states so that I’m left with only a few friends now and I’m isolated too much of the time. I know I need to get out more but I feel too lousy and can’t seem to break out of the cycle.

I know this is a really lousy post and I apologize. This has been building up in me for so long I just had to vent a bit and explain how it feels for someone who is as together as I am to go thru such terrible disillusion. I can’t recognize myself anymore. I don’t know who I am or why I’m here and I’ve usually known that. I’ve had visions of my life since I was in high school and I’ve followed them, often to glory but often to falling apart.

In the past 18 years I’ve gone thru so many changes. From the initial recognition of the illness to learning the tricks of the trade in how to keep yourself well to falling apart again and again to being OK again now and then. But it’s been awhile and I’m feeling the loss of my usual bright self and energetic persona. I just feel like a wet lump of dough or noodles overcooked and it’s like moving thru oil or honey just to walk some days. It’s very physical as well as mental.

I’m hoping that things will shift soon and I’m still trying to be OK. I talk to my counselor and psych. and to Louie and other friends a bit but not too much. Maybe it’s time to go back to the Bipolar Support group I used to go to. I wonder. Sometimes others with the same illness can be good support for one another and it’s helped me in the past. I need help now. Badly. I really don’t want to implode and end my life. It’d be so stupid and I know it always changes, but it’s so hard to wait it out and feel so powerless about it all.

My diagnosis is that of Bipolar Disorder with rapid cycling and mixed states, which means I cycle back and forth from high to low too often and often will be in both places at once. It’s very confusing when I can look at my self and see how great it is and then in my inner experience it’s so terrible. It’s truly cognitive dissonance. I can’t seem to hold onto my brain and keep it running on the smooth track of self love but instead find myself on the hate train to hell. I’m so tired of it.

Is this going to be the way it is for the rest of my life or will they someday find a cure for this horrible illness that has so wrecked my lfe and made me into a different person than I used to be? I don’t like who I am right now at all… I have hope but not much. The same goes for the physical pain I live with. Together they overwhelm me too often, like today when I hurt so bad I’m at a 7 on a 10 point scale and it feels like it. I’ve had to take extra pain meds already and it’s only 11:30 in the morning.

I could use more pain killers it seems. But with the way things are going with the pain medication situation it’s so tricky just to get what I do. I can’t imagine what I’d be like if I lost the morphine. I wouldn’t be able to even function. I’d be in bed and in pain all the time and would eventually give in to it and just give up I suspect. Add in my occasional migraine and it’s a total picture of pain. It’s just too much.

OK I’ve talked enough here. I’m sorry this isn’t a more positive post. I am trying to get better. I really am.  But it seems so impossible that I feel the way I do when I have such a good life and it feels so unfair to me. Not just to me but to Louie and my other friends who have to deal with my moods and pain all the time. It’s hard on them and I’m grateful to them for staying with me and being my friends. I couldn’t do it without them.

I hope that my honesty and lack of inhibitions in talking about this will help others who suffer from this same illness feel more comfortable talking about it themselves. It’s OK, and even necessary, to air our hard stories about how difficult this illness is. I’m a big fan of education and if even one person reads this and understands more of what it’s like for us it’ll be fine with me. It’s Real and we’re Not faking it, despite the stigma we face… This is Life for way too many of us…

Wishing you a good day today,

Steve

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25 comments on “Stuck!

  1. My dear Steve …. I’m sharing this bc others bed to see …. this is a life lesson!! You are a wonderful human being!! There are many who love you! Always think there’s someone down south who thinks highly of you!!

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  2. Hello dear Steve. This is a good post. Through it you are connecting through the roots. The illness otherwise separates and cuts you off – but CONNECTING, even through the pain, is what you do. Is there any area in your body, whether moving or being still, which can dance with that? Find the dancing partner for a moment? Your definition – Cognitive Dissonance – is brilliant. It is not surprising you feel stressed just now. The planetary Grand Cross is make or break point of change just now, and it brings up to the surface everything which is really challenging. After the solar eclipse next week, things are likely to loosen up and move on, and you will look back and feel proud of yourself for weathering it through. With Love and Good Luck – and love to Louie too. Jane xx

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    • Dear Jane, Thank you so much for your observations and insight. Connecting is so important to me it’s true. I try to do it but sometimes I just can’t pull it off. I just read your great post on the Grand Cross and thought I was prepared for a challenging time of it this last week, but it sill got me in the guts. I like your concept of dancing with it deep in my soul. That’s where I’m always OK. If I could just access it more easily it’d help… I”ll get thru this as I always do. I just had to speak the truth of it for a bit and share what its like. I suspect you’re right and I’ll look back at this and be glad I made it thru it so well actually. I’m still vertical after all! 🙂
      Love to you and from Louie too,
      Steve

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    • Thank you for your empathy, and the hugs are nice too… 🙂 I know I do love myself and it’s just my mind at work trying to murder me. But when I feel like I have been it’s close to impossible to remember that. I’m too emotional for my own good it seems and believe they’re real when they’re usually just a reflection of something deeper.
      Peace,
      Steve

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      • Yeah, I know…..been there many times myself. My imagination likes to create great stories for me to listen to. I can dwell there or I can remember my LIFE and get on with it – any one day I can go either way 🙂 It’s tough but then we are survivors, we’re both still here for a reason 🙂

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        • I have that vivid imagination too. It’s fun sometimes but hell at others. I wouldn’t want to change it tho, just the content at times. Yes we’re both survivors and that’s why we’re still here I’m sure. Lots of things to still do and experience, eh?
          peace, 🙂
          Steve

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  3. at one time or another. It’s hard to be a caretaker. It is. But living with such emotions must be even harder. I can’t imagine not recognizing myself…not finding joy in the things that always cheered me.

    Blessings to both you and Louie. Things always get better…it’s just a matter of how long until then.

    I’ll be thinking of you.

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    • Thank you for your kind words Dani. I’m already doing better than I was when I wrote this, but it’s a true story and I feel this way too often. It does always get better, but then it always gets worse again too. And then better. And so on and so on… It’s a vicious cycle…
      Thanks for your thoughts and caring.
      Steve

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