Bipolar ThoughtsDepression

I have these small, thin but long, slightly raised white lines on the left side of my chest and torso. There are seven of them. They are barely visible, especially in the winter (then tend to pop more if I have even the slightest tan). I doubt any of you have ever noticed them if you ever happened to see me without a shirt, a situation I am rarely in.

I only ever notice them, or think about them, when I am in the shower. They are very noticeable to the touch. They are quite raised for their diminutive size. It is possible something about the water or soap makes them more perceptible to touch as well.

I got these scars in June, 2013.

I had been off of work since the last week in February. I had been out of the hospital day program I was enrolled in for over a month. I had been alone all day everyday, drinking, abusing pills, struggling to grapple with the whirlwind few months that included a complete break, a serious suicide attempt, hospitalization, and the heavy burden now being placed on my brand new wife.

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Bipolar ThoughtsSuicide

54,589

That was the most motor vehicular related deaths ever recorded in a single year in the USA, in 1972.

The federal government proclaimed motor vehicular deaths as a public health issue and has since thrown billions of dollars at the problem. And it worked! Not only have those deaths sharply decreased to 32,675 in 2014, they have done so despite the fact that we now drive many more miles with more cars on the road. There has been nearly a 215% increase in the amount of miles driven since 1972, but the mortality rate has dropped over 40%.

That is a truly amazing thing and many people consider it the greatest achievement of the public health works of the 20th century.

That’s difficult to quantify, so I won’t try, however it is still amazing.

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Bipolar ThoughtsObsessionsUncategorized

I don’t know why this didn’t publish on my Facebook on Wednesday, so I am reposting this again today:

 

Have you ever experienced a moment so intense or unexpected that it feels as if you can feel the vibrations of fear and anxiety?

I don’t mean physically, per se, although that might also be true. What I am referring to is like how it feels when you look at this image:

Two things are immediately juxtaposed that your brain cannot rationalize.

I imagine that is how a lot of people felt right after the election, how they still feel about it, how I felt as well. Like my lifelong experience told me something was completely impossible, and then it happened. Maybe like watching a magic trick that is so realistic it actually frightens you instead of dazzles you. An experience that is too real to be fake but not possibly true.

Except it is true. That is what makes it so difficult to swallow, what intensifies those vibrations.

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Bipolar ThoughtsObsessions

Have you ever experienced a moment so intense or unexpected that it feels as if you can feel the vibrations of fear and anxiety?

I don’t mean physically, per se, although that might also be true. What I am referring to is like how it feels when you look at this image:

Two things are immediately juxtaposed that your brain cannot rationalize.

I imagine that is how a lot of people felt right after the election, how they still feel about it, how I felt as well. Like my lifelong experience told me something was completely impossible, and then it happened. Maybe like watching a magic trick that is so realistic it actually frightens you instead of dazzles you. An experience that is too real to be fake but not possibly true.

Except it is true. That is what makes it so difficult to swallow, what intensifies those vibrations.

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Bipolar ThoughtsDepressionMedicationUncategorized

Just thought I would share a quick mini post from my phone. I know I didn’t post at all this week, it has been a bad week, bad month really. 

So this is the news. I just took a trazadone, lithium, and klonopin. The same concoction I was on before I quit the meds. 

I have been tracking my mood for three weeks on a couple and it is showing a steady low mood witha some serious swings the last couple days. 

I hope to stay on top of this and manage it before it becomes an issue. 

I’ll get into the specifics in another post, but for now, it is 10pm, I took all my pills, that is where I’m at. 

Have a good night!

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Bipolar ThoughtsBlogMedicationParenting

I took my sleeping pill, Trazadone, for the first time in months yesterday.

The decision came before Jocelyn had her several meltdowns I mentioned in the last blog. I was actually planning on taking one on the night of her first meltdown. It was one of the first things I told my wife when I got home from work. But alas, Jocelyn had other plans.

The great part: I slept through the night.

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Bipolar ThoughtsPersonal RelationshipsSuicide

Monday was my wife’s first day back to work since the birth of my son.

So Monday was also my first day driving both kids home from my parent’s house. And for whatever reason, very surprisingly, the drive home was rather emotional for me.

Maybe it was the realization that this is the last one. I’ll never have another first day of driving my child home from my parent’s house. This one is it. Our family is settled at this point. But to be honest, I wasn’t thinking about my son really at all. I was focused on my daughter.

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Bipolar ThoughtsObsessions

I have long held the position that the mind games people like to cite as ways to attain happiness are complete poppy-cock. Maybe they work for some people, and maybe they give a certain level of satisfaction, but they have no effect on any of my serious moods, or my overall perception of life. Do not attempt to fight depression by using guru techniques.

And to be perfectly honest, science is on my side with this one.

Bipolar ThoughtsMedication

There is a building ideology within the mental health community that the approach of life-long medication is outdated. Medications are better utilized in crisis or times of visible active disease. Thankfully, bipolar often expresses itself within cycles, one of those cycles being something like ‘remission’, in other words, where I am right now. However I should note that this ideology is currently not being applied to Bipolar or Schizophrenia. Although with the emergence of non-medication medical treatments like the new forms of ECT, or TMS and even newer technologies about to roll onto the market, we might soon see a dramatic shift away from daily pills as an effective method for treating Bipolar Disorder.

[I should note here that use of a term like ‘remission’ is extremely controversial. There has been a lot of softening on the idea that various mental illnesses are genetic or derived from a chemical imbalance and all that jazz everyone believed was 100% true just 10 years ago. But remission is going the opposite way. 10 years ago you could find several articles pointing to bipolar remission and today virtually none. I can only tell you my experience. I am virtually symptom free, and have been for months. I have days that are up or down similar to a normal cycle but they are very short lived, even if severe. So I understand this is not complete ‘remission’ in the normal sense of the word, but I have no other words to use.]

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