Read further to discover more about Bipolar 1
I want to first apologize to my readers and guests since I have been silent these past two weeks. Whenever I go silent, I am experiencing a bipolar 1 episode. I have a friend who is a bipolar blogger, too. She always encourages me to write something everyday even when the bipolar 1 episode leaves me feeling like I have been hit by a semi. So, I am going to try to be better at staying connected to my readers.
What Happens During a Bipolar 1 Episode?
I have bipolar 1 with psychotic features as well as rapid cycling and mixed episodes. I need to put out this disclaimer that everyone’s experience is unique to them. What I share with you here may be different to someone else who has bipolar 1.
First of all, there are two different types of bipolar: 1 and 2. They are both awful to to have. A bipolar 2 episode may look a lot like a biplar 1 episode. However, bipolar 1 is often described as way more intense than bipolar 2. The jury is still out on some symptoms being only experienced in bipolar 1. This meaning that for instance a manic episode can only take place in someone with bipolar 1.
Experiencing psychotic features in my bipolar 1 episode means I have delusions and hallucinations. One of my delusions is I believe there are Russian spies living in my bedroom closet. They are ready with pistols drawn to shoot me dead. This makes me not want to go to bed when my mind and body need me to. Bipolars desperately need to monitor their sleep hygiene and keep a daily sleep schedule.
I have had hallucinations in all the senses which is rare but obviously can happen. One night I was lying on the couch when all of a sudden, I felt someone grab my right foot with a firm grip. I shot straight up and asked my husband if he touched my foot. With a straight face he said I did not grab your foot. This is called a tactile hallucination. For about a week to 10 days I had a gustatory hallucination, which is a peculiar taste or feeling in my mouth. I felt as if there were toasted bread crumbs in the back of my throat. I never eat toast, but that is what it felt like. I tried brushing my teeth and gargling with mouth wash. Nothing could make it stop. The one hallucination that I experience the most is auditory – voices, music, music or voices sounding as if they are coming from a radio, my name being called, my husband making a noise with his voice when he wasn’t even in the house.
Rapid Cycling in Bipolar 1
Rapid cycling is where I cycle from a manic state to a depressed state over and over again at short intervals. My mood can change every few minutes, or it could take several hours to change. I used to get depressed and stay depressed for several days or months. The same way with mania, I would get manic in the spring and summer and depressed in the fall and winter. Now it can be as often as every other minute throughout the year. One minute I will be restless with a bunch of pent up energy, and then I turn around and I’m staring out the window, paralyzed with depression.
Mixed Episodes in Bipolar 1
I loathe mixed episodes. It is one of the worst bipolar episodes in my opinion. With a mixed episode, I will experience both manic and depression AT THE SAME TIME. It paralyzes me. Here is an example of a mixed episode: I will get this rush of energy when I feel like I want to do everything at the same time – shop with no spending limits, clean the entire house, talk on the phone (which I rarely do when I feel good), stay up all night and watch movies and write. Occurring right beside it in the same minute or hour, I will feel depressed and unable to get off the couch. I will want to sit on the couch and stare out the window or TV without seeing anything. Or I will want to sleep the night away. It is exhausting.
Why am I MIA?
What I just described to you, I experience every month to 6 weeks. And then it comes back around again and again and again. My experience is unique to me. Other people could experience the same moods but it comes in a different package. Then if you add on top of that my period, the rage train comes barreling into town. Sometimes the moods hit me really hard and I am unable to write or even function. Other times, I am holding onto my Rock (Psalm 18:2) and it doesn’t feel as bad. I have learned to never hold onto my moods because they are fleeting, I cannot control them and I always eventually get back to feeling normal if for only a little while.
Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me about your experience with a mental illness.