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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Verdict is in....drum roll please....

Bipolar Disorder....who's shocked? Let me see a show of hands?!

Yeah yeah...I knew it all along, didn't we talk about this about 2 months ago? I'm the dumbass who talked myself out of the appointment. I am feeling better after talking to my doctor. I have been given medication to get the panic attacks under control and my Cymbalta has been upped temporarily to try to lift me out of this episode. But I have to admit I am feeling much better tonight. Just purging it all to my doctor helped tremendously. He chastised me for using the terms "nuts" "crazy" "whack job" "psycho" etc...clearly he doesn't appreciate my humor! LOL! But he confirmed what I suspected all along. Now I am being moved along to a head shrinker to get the in depth scoop. I will know more about that appointment tomorrow. It may be a month or so before I get in, as long as I have no 'scary feelings'....but I already feel like a burden has been lifted from me. It is in God's hands now and I have faith that by taking control of this and reigning it in, I will be just fine.

My only heartache tonight comes from the conversation we had with my Mother in Law tonight. I felt that we might as well tell her because she is so involved in our lives that the 'migraine' story was only going to last so long. She is aware of my struggle with depression, but she's not exactly of the generation that approves of medicating oneself for 'simply being down in the dumps'....you know the type. Well first let me give you a brief family history. My mother suffered from schizoaffective disorder - bipolar type which is NOT the same as simply having bipolar disorder. Her world was riddled with paranoid delusions and hallucinations of the most frightening forms. I couldn't have her at my wedding because she was convinced someone was coming to murder me there....you get the picture.

Hubby and I take MIL aside and quietly tell her the news. Her first reaction is this "I was just telling (insert sister-in-law's name) that I thought that's what was wrong with you...because of your mom and everything...." This of course instantly made me feel vulnerable and weak...the family has been talking about me? About my mental health? Hubby and I were both quick to explain that what I am suffering from is in no way the same thing. But I couldn't resist asking her why in the world they would be discussing my mental health? What had I done or said that gave them reason to talk about it? She informed me that because I have her watch our kids so often....she felt used....she has no life because of it....etc....She watches the kids a few evenings a week here and there, and on Saturday mornings when I work. She lives 1 mile down the road...I had no idea I was robbing her of her 'life'. I was crushed. What little relief I had gotten at the doctor's office had suddenly been stomped back down to the depths of despair...Hubby was upset about it too, and the first thing he said when we got into the car to leave was that he was sorry. She has a knack for bad timing and bad wording...and it's always always in a manner that it hurtful, even when you know she doesn't mean to hurt you. But I am very hurt. I am fighting the compulsion to write a letter and send her all my research on schizoaffective disorder...because believe you me I have TONS! I researched it to the bone before I had children, I feared I would develop it or pass it to my kids. I have come to the conclusion that most doctors do not believe that it is hereditary, unlike bipolar disorder, which is. But to be compared to the psychosis my mother suffered was devastating for me. To hear that people in my husband's family were comparing me to her made me want to vomit. They witnessed some pretty horrifying things when my mother was alive, and now I fear they are just waiting for me to loose my marbles, running around naked trying to save the world from sin, and start hallucinating.....

If I know anything at all...I know I am not psychotic! I am not her. I am not suicidal, and never have been. I don't hear voices. I don't hallucinate or have delusions of grandeur. It hurt to be compared to her in such a manner. I know the best thing to do is just let it go. But clearly I have a hard time with that...I think the 'mania' side of my disorder probably lends to that. I am anxious to meet with the psychiatrist and find out my actual diagnosis. I don't believe that I am a rapid cycling patient, but only a doctor can tell me that. Either way I am ready to take on the task of getting better. But now I hesitate to ask my husband's family to help with the children while I try to do what is necessary to get help. I don't have many other options when it comes to childcare.....I feel trapped now. I have apparently made her feel used. I was prepared to hear at some point in time how my illness may have hurt people in the last few months...just not 45 minutes after the actual diagnosis.

And for the record the shrink may disagree with this diagnosis too. This is just a preliminary diagnosis from my physician. We shall see. The good news, for now, is that I am starting to feel better. I hope the sunshine returns tomorrow.

P.S. Thank you so much for all the support. You have no idea how much it means to me!

4 comments:

Mum-me said...

Well I am really glad you have some sort of diagnosis, and I hope the psychiatrist can help your further.

I am so sorry that your MIL upset you. What bad timing to come out and say all those things - can't help wondering why she didn't say anything before!

Hopefully things will smooth over a bit and she will be happy to babysit while you get on top of this disorder.

Kate said...

I'm so glad you went to the doctor and got a diagnosis (even if it's just an initial one). There's something about getting the ball rolling that's comforting.

As for your MIL, I have no words. I'm just sorry she added to your burden.

I hope things level off for you soon. And BTW, I love your music! Violent Femmes is playing now--makes me want to dig out my CD.

Liz said...

Forget your MIL (even though it is hard!) and focus on the fact that you are working to get everything under control. Or, you could call her bluff... have your husband tell her that instead of taking the kids those days, you (or he) will say home and she could write you a check for however much pay you or he would lose. Would she prefer that? OH MY GOD! I can't believe how selfish she is - telling you that at that particular moment! Sounds like there is something wrong with her...

Just remember, things might look bad right now - but you are working on improving things. Focus on that and take it one day at a time! You can do it.

Shannon said...

IN-LAWS! Blah! I'm sure she was just dealing with your news in her own way and did NOT mean to hurt you, BUT I have been hurt repeatedly by my in-laws over the past 10 years over silly things they have said and done.... The best thing to do, BELIEVE me, is to take it with a grain of salt and not cause problems. If you think they were talking about you before.... just wait and see what they'll have to say if you confront her! I learned that very hard lesson just a couple of weeks ago.. Tell someone how you feel and you will become the WORST PERSON on the planet... you are the "outsider" in that family! Sorry... don't mean to be so blunt about this. I just don't want to see you hurting any more than you already are! And they sound like just the family that can do it! And ... just keep on taking her the kids. If she really felt that way, she would say NO!