Living with a mental illness is the most difficult journey one can have. Because it is not visible you can't show your wounds if you like. You can look absolutely normal and speak normally but inside you are crying and hurting all the time. I'm writing this article to let the people who might be suffering but afraid to go and see the doctor. It is exactly what happened to me, it feels as if you are going through a bereavement. I didn't pay attention to myself for years, because I was an extremely busy woman with two small children, numerous projects, work, university. Sometimes I would read science books to the point that I couldn't switch off. My mind was constantly racing and it was difficult to rest in that moment of my life. I remember smiling but sometimes inside I was feeling sad. The moments of euphoria was when I would listen to my favourite tunes or exercised. There were the days when I felt on top of the world. I would describe this feeling to my friends.
They kept on asking me what it was like? I was simply replying with awesome. I've had challenges of all kinds, because I was highly motivated and wanted to succeed all the time. However life isn't like this and sometimes you have to experience pitfalls along the way. Things have been difficult with the relationships because I was speaking my mind and people would take it the wrong way. I didn't view the world the way others did. It was extremely difficult to concentrate on one thing. I've had to be involved in sports, training everyday to keep myself in shape. This lasted almost a decade and then suddenly I started to develop other hobbies like involved heavily in the religious life.
I had strange dreams and one in particular was stuck in my head. I was drowning in this thick muddy water and someone pulled me with an extreme strength out of it, swimming like a dog and holding me in the right hand above the deadly mud. However swimming for long periods of time like this was extremely difficult and some other powerful force with the brightest light I've ever dreamed of pulled me out and took me to a different place. This dream frightened me and I was sharing it with my family members. Shortly after this dream I was diagnosed with Bipolar. I went through hell to get better. Was this dream a premonition? The support of my dear husband was impressive, my friends would ask me if I was ok. My family members were in touch to ask how I was. Luckily I was surrounded by good people.
As I was on handful of medical drugs including lithium, my side effects sometimes were unbearable. I was struggling everyday just to wake up without even thinking of doing anything. I've put two stone in weight and my lifestyle changed dramatically. I was in and out of hospital. Finally my medication got reviewed and I was on tablets that had the least side effects. The doctors have difference of opinions and argued that I suffer with severe anxiety disorder, post traumatic stress syndrome and depression, however I believe I got the correct diagnosis when I was hospitalized and at the moment I'm on an antipsychotic medication. It is difficult to live with Bipolar but you have to work at it. You have to do things that you sometimes can't be bothered to do. Exercising has become so hard and it was extremely enjoyable in the passed. This is because of the medication. I live a reasonably healthy lifestyle consuming cellular nutrition most of the time.
For those of you who are struggling I would recommend write down everything you are feeling and ask for medical help. I've had several appointments of psycho-therapy, very useful techniques including Cognitive Behavioral therapy that enables one to think differently and instead of fighting with yourself all the time, accept the challenges and have your own tailored plan for the future. Just stick to it because motivation might not always work, especially because of the medication. Remember it is a journey and you have this condition for a reason so be gentle with yourself and get professional support so that you are not alone. Its not easy but I'm sure you can do it and I hope this article has inspired you enough to succeed. Take care!