Recently I was diagnosed with postpartum depression along with Bipolar.
I want to be honest and say that while many wonder why I can still smile so much; it doesn’t mean I don’t hurt even deeper. The smile on my face doesn’t tell the story so many want and have been asking to hear.
Recently I started to wonder why someone was going to “come get me.” But there was nobody around planning to hurt me. On top of that, lights and sounds, textures and tastes were “hurting me and attacking me.” I was in an extreme amount of pain throughout my entire body, couldn’t clean, cook, eat, sleep and had trouble breathing. I guess that was my first manic episode. It was a very difficult thing for me to experience.
Being on medicine doesn’t mean I won’t ever feel that same type of pain. It doesn’t mean I won’t ever have bipolar affect me. And sadly, it doesn’t mean I’m “normal again.” It means that I am jittery with a big ball of emotions in my chest.
Luckily for me, I was blessed to have a loving and godly husband. He, just last night, prayed for me while I experienced pain similar to labor. My body was writhing in pain while he held my hand and prayed “god please give peace and comfort to my wife.” He would squeeze my hand so I knew he was awake and soon after that I fell asleep again. That was one instance of eleven years of this type of pain I carried and support he has given.
Some days I have an extreme amount of dependence on those around me. Other days I carry an extreme amount repulsion of people- even loved ones. I cannot mother the way I used to and I lost my ability to breastfeed my baby. I struggled to clothe myself and I feel as though I regressed in so many ways. I forgot how to live my own life.
In therapy recently a therapist said “it sounds like you live a lot of your life out of fear. From the moment you awake.” I know “they” say it takes awhile to stabilize especially on these types of meds. I am scared to write, scared to share without knowing if I’m stabilized.
I lost so much of my love for writing, photography, etc for this disorder and for depression. I am unwilling to live my life out of fear a second longer. How much more can I hide without feeling alone, isolated, angry and confused? So today I am opening up. Today I am taking a big step forward. Today I am saying “this is the face of postpartum depression. This is the face of bipolar."
For those hoping I would get help- I am currently connected with a group of professionals who are working with me to stabilize my meds and work through some of the post traumatic stress I am experiencing. I also have the support of many loved ones near and far.
If you are experiencing a personal crisis don't discount your local hospital and their ability to help you (that's who is helping me) or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.
Here is a list of celebrities who have lived with bipolar
Here is is a song that recalls some of the strong feelings I have had and my husband has had while helping me cope with Bipolar.