I apologize for not blogging sooner, but life’s ups and downs provided hurdles to me being able to manage my mental illness for the second half of January. Believe me, I had good intentions towards blogging. The past two to three weeks have been a cornucopia of ups and downs both in my life and with my mental illness. I’ve had personal issues; continuously unstable moods; getting sick with food poisoning; my adored pet on the verge of death; and trying desperately to find a second job.
Life’s ups and down
You never know when life or people or situations will throw you a curve ball. I had a big curve ball that initiated an up and down that left me wondering the uncertainties of my life. Someone or something like a car, house, job or marriage can be there one minute and another minute get swallowed up from the fallout from life’s ups and downs.
I turned the new diagnosis of diabetes of Jake, my Dachshund/Beagle mix up and down into a learning opportunity. I have always been scared of needles since they used to make me very woozy. When I was taught to give Jake his insulin shots, I shocked myself right out of my socks! I had no problem giving him his insulin. At the beginning of his diagnosis, I was of the mindset that James, my husband, needed to learn how to give the shots to Jake, too. Then, I could easily get out of the responsibility.
Subsequently, when Jake got so sick that we thought we were going to lose him twice, I worried I had failed at my attempts to carry out the doctor’s orders. My heart was aching for my little buddy. I was frightened when I saw him lose muscle control in his back legs, fall down and shake almost like having a seizure. I wanted to freak out! At the same time, I wanted to be strong for my Jake. Changing my focus from failure to strength, even in tears, helped me think more clearer in the situation. Jake is getting better with an increase in his insulin. Now we are learning to deal with all the tiny pieces of this canine diabetic puzzle.
Mental illness ups and downs
Another puzzle I am still attempting to figure out, is my mental health. In the past, I have spoken about the roller coaster rides I have been on concerning my own mental illness. Sometimes, I was not very victorious because I tended to focus on the negative. Hence I rolled over and took a nap on my couch or called James up crying. At the moment, that seemed like the appropriate things to do. While under the pressures of the past two to three weeks, I decided to choose different tactics instead o sleeping and crying. I looked at the situations I was going through square in the face, pulled up my big girl panties, said a prayer and dove in.
One of my changes/promises for this year was to not to give up so easily. When I would give up, I would make all kinds of excuses for myself. I was pathetic. I hated the person I had become. You see, this promise to leave my excuses behind has been extremely difficult. No matter if it were an up or a down I made excuses for everything I did or did not do.
It is easy to make excuses with my bipolar 1 with psychotic features, rapid cycling and mixed episodes because it is challenging to live with. Now, I did fight through a few things and left the the excuses at home. With most things I didn’t even attempt to fight.
I have read in memoirs, on the internet as well as have seen for myself in support groups just how strong a bipolar person like me can be through the ups and downs of my mental health and life. It is a lot of work fighting, yet it is worth every second of it.