Hi! I'm Sara, 24, cat and book lover, resident in beachy Brighton. I was diagnosed bipolar in October 2013 and am currently taking Abilify, Sertraline and Atarax to help relieve the symptoms. I am also committed to positive lifestyle changes and hope that my blog will help others on their own journey of recovery. I would like to thank my friends and family, without whose continued support I would not have gotten this far :)

Friday, 12 December 2014

Suspended in Time

Today has been pretty blah, somewhat stable though.  I completed modules on moocs in Business, digital marketing and graphic design.  I tampered with Wordpress some more and managed to install a layout but not get it to line up properly, gr! I watched more mind-numbing television with my dad, it's pleasent enough just hanging out with him though.

Oh, and I finally got my photography blog together >http://intrepidmoog.blogspot.co.uk/, check it out if you want to see records of my jaunts across the world.  There's some serious psychedelia condensed in it's pages!

Overall I'm just counting down the days to Brighton, and then to Christmas.  The days kind of drag, although recently I've made efforts to learn some new things.  Stops my brain collapsing into Hibernation.

I'm like the hanged man right now, suspended in time, waiting for the wheels of fate to spin into motion.

I'm in limbo, waiting for paperwork and money to come through. Scouting opportunities but still no idea as to whether I can take them.  It's strange. Oh, and I'm skint. Horrendously poor. I'm relying on the good graces of many people and by God does it feel crappy.

I had a dream that I dragged a train (don't ask me how) across a rocky outcrop and an ocean.  My dreams have been vivid as of late.

I'm putting off the inevitable by not writing, I need to get into it to start fully realizing my dreams.  At least with this I get some practise, though I kind of feel sorry for anyone that stumbles on these late night ramblings!

Thursday, 11 December 2014

My Bipolar Stats

I was diagnosed in October 2013.  I'd spent the Autumn in a particularly savage depression.  my doctors response was to increase my anti-depressants. I stopped sleeping almost entirely and found that my brain was racing constantly.  It was a  curious reaction to the medications so I was referred to a psychiatrist, who promptly diagnosed me bipolar.

At first it was so obvious I accepted it immediately. My life had been a whirlwind of ups and downs. The ups characterised by delusions of grandeur, boundless energy and poor impulse control.  The downs characterised by catatonic depression.  I'd had two suicide attempts by the time I was 17, and had been on a multicoloured rainbow of uppers and downers (on and off, of course) since I was 13.  For the most part I had attributed my erratic behaviour to a terrible, abusive childhood.

  I had always felt familiar around bipolar people, and related a great deal to literature and art I had stumbled upon relating to it. Who'd have thought...

I tried Seroquel, which completely knocked me out for 20 hours a day.  When I was awake I fed and stared into space, I became some kind of hungering, drowsy zombie. I stopped them rather promptly. Previously I had spent two weeks coming off the sertraline.  I had dreadful muscle spasms (brain shivers, as I read later) and could not bare to look at light.  I gave up on treatment and decided to go at it my own way.

 I got a new job, a high flying recruitment affair that fed into my mania, and made for sure to not tell anyone bar my closest and dearest that I was (dun-dun-dun) Bipolar.  Painfully, I later became aware  that my erratic behaviour was pretty obvious. But I still persisted and for awhile things were spectacular.  It was a wild summer and I'd earned more money than I'd ever had, was meeting tons of new people and learning about the video games industry (something I'd often angled for).

Things spiraled very quickly.  I  stopped sleeping and barely ate. I still trudged into work, late and dishevelled.  I drank and smoked myself into oblivion at the weekends. . At work I was losing focus, and increased pressure on my dwindling performance led to anxiety attacks in the middle of the day. I was losing grip.  Again.

I packed in the job and went crawling back to the doctor.  For the last 3 months I have been co-operating fully with my gp and psychiatrist taking my meds and implementing positive lifestyle changes.  Moreover I have been blessed and lucky to have a beautiful support network of friends and family, without whom I would not have gotten this far at all.  Thankyou so much, all you fine people!

So now  I've told you my story, tell me yours :)

Brief Meditation on Self Help, Cupcakes and Death.

Today I woke up at 12pm and began wrangling with Housing benefit (who now claim to be sending money on Monday-I am hopeful but I know this is naive!) and then Wordpress.  Needed a refresher for ages on how to use the old beast. Made good progress.

I watched television with my dad, all the shows  blend into one after awhile.    I do occasionally find myself compelled by British Bake Off (Back! Satan!), everything on it is too delectable! I'm pretty sure it's responsible for the cup-cake epidemic that has swept the West. In Brighton there's probably more cupcake shops than supermarkets.  After awhile the frothy displays kind of torment you, "Witness my capitalist decadence!" they scream, in pseudo French accents.

BBC Music awards were on, usual display of plastic ritzy folk miming to rehashed crap. In particular I admired how their guitars seemed to playing entirely alone, no hands! Even Hendrix would salute that. I think....What a bunch of mindless hacks. I wish modern music wasn't so disappointing. Like, all the time.

Here's some real music to keep you afloat this dreadful winter.

I miss my boyfriend and his big fuzzy beard, and also my fluffy rag-doll and his admirable ruff. It's lonely in Hemel Hempstead, though it's good to spend time with my dad. It's hard not to think about my Nan while I'm here.  She died recently and the whole thing was just heartbreaking.  It's weird how quickly you get used to people dying. I've known about 5 that have gone, and each time it's a little easier and then it's horrible how easy it's getting. It's all pretty dark I guess.

I've dug myself back into self-help books, I do believe them highly useful but also, at points, really irritating.  You have to be selective for sure.  Otherwise you find the same 10 books regurgitated in a different (usually more stupid-friendly) format or setting. Like blockbuster movies.  Except they propose to be life changing.

I'm reading Eckhart O Toole, I find his language a little patronizing at points but overall he explains his points excellently and I reckon he might have some answers, or a path to further answers.

My mood's been pretty stable today, so has my appetite.  Been very disassociated, but that's the norm.  I always find that with the medications, they can draw a curtain over your feelings abit.  But maybe that's because my frame of reference relating to my feelings is so unpredictable, maybe what I consider numb is really just normal.

I get really high and really down and perhaps I'm not used to sitting in the middle.  Why does that feel like a sacrifice? It's not a case of feeling special, although I do miss that super ego trip that comes sometimes with a mania,  I think again, it's just your "normal" for awhile, and you base your values on that.

As I get better I'm having to restructure all the norms and values in my life, especially as I learn to look t myself objectively.  That's bloody difficult! But everyone has to do it, change is the motor of life.