This week marks one month of stability for me. Four weeks without serious mood swings. I’m using periods because, if I ended my sentences with the number of exclamation points I would like, I’m sure I would appear manic. For example:
GUYZ!!! I HAVE BEEN FREAKING STABLE FOR FOUR WHOLE WEEKS AND IT FEELS SO GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111!!!
It seems that Latuda might be my miracle drug – or at least the right addition to the cocktail I’m currently on. I’ve been taking this dose for about six weeks, and I can feel the difference. I mentioned in a previous blog post that I am still experiencing a full range of emotions, but I am getting a break from the roller-coaster.
Of course, more than Latuda has helped me get to this point. I am working very hard at therapy to change the way I think. I am dealing with my deep-seated issues that affect the severity of my episodes. I am learning to relax and calm myself down. It truly is work.
I also owe a lot to the living environment Kathleen and I have created at Towson. Kathleen is very supportive of my study and sleep routine. She encourages me to go to the gym, but doesn’t put pressure on me when I’d rather stay at our room. We both eat pretty well for college students. Overall, I’m very comfortable with my living situation, and I think that has had a positive effect on my mood.
Last night I thought I felt a depressive episode beginning. I tried not to panic. I took stock of my symptoms: tiredness, irritability, feeling overwhelmed. I did what I could to calm myself by taking a shower and listening to my favorite music. I did homework to distract myself, but I ended up putting everything away for the night and going to bed early. I gave myself permission to feel bad, to explore how I was feeling without plunging myself in deeper than I needed to. I eventually fell asleep, and I woke up feeling much better.
What if I had woken up this morning feeling awful? What if my bad feelings turned into a full blown episode? Would this month of stability matter?
Absolutely. Now, I know that stability is possible. I know that my life will not be a permanent state of vacillation. There will be more episodes in my future, but they will always end. Bipolar will not consume my life.