What’s Depression About

It seems like I’ve had depression since I was in high school. I have journals where I wrote about feelings of loneliness and depression. “Sadness because one has no friends or family closeness.  I could trigger easily with anger.

I have ADHD ,  and that was difficult because in school trying to learn math and English. I couldn’t even take college courses, because I feared taking the Tasp Test, when I lived in Texas.  Instead , my first job out of school was a power company.  I was always good at typing, and I was creative. But English (grammar),  and Math was not my forte.

The following is some research on depression including my own discussions.

Some people with major depression experience the symptoms of depression only once in their life. Others experience frequent relapses and recurrences. (I experience it from triggers).  Triggers were like feeling alone,lines

Alone

Why am I depressed?

no one cares, family problems, my life is going no where. it’s important to pay attention to your feelings in order to catch possible signs of a relapse. Some people recognize the signs and some can’t, like me.

If you’re feeling down because of a specific event, such as losing a job or the breakup of a relationship, it could be normal and temporary sadness. If you feel sad, despairing, teary, or “empty” every day for more than two weeks and it’s interfering with other aspects of your life, it may be clinical depression.

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Bipolar – Hypomania

Triple Falls-Dupont National Forest

Triple Falls-Dupont National Forest

Definition: Hypomania (literally “under mania” or “less than mania”) is a mood state characterized by persistent disinhibition and pervasive elevated (euphoric) or irritable mood but generally less severe than full mania.

This is a horrible feeling.  I haven’t felt this since I was first diagnosed.   I’ve always been hyper but this was almost out of control.  It actually was scaring me. I couldn’t stay still I had to do something all the time. When watching TV I had to be reading, searching on the computer or iPhone.  My mind was always spinning with all kinds of thoughts. 
I’ve got a project going right now creating jewelry for my Etsy shop.  I’ve been compulsive by spending too much money on supplies, buying books or magazines. I read about different designs to make.  My heart races and I feel as though I have consumed eight cups of coffee.  I breathe rapidly and my blood pressure goes up.
My mom use to get on to me saying, “Vickie sit down!” I was walking back and forth between rooms, because I couldn’t decide where I wanted to go. I do this now. I stayed up all hours making jewelry or search on Ebay for supplies. Being a perfectionist, I want to make the best earrings or necklaces with the best material.  I’ve been hearing sounds that get my attention..  I’m worn out!  Oh, let’s not forget the grocery store – I have to go all the time and I buy food I don’t eat.  I’ve been eating a lot too.  I’m calling this hyper eating.  But, I’m enjoying it that’s the problem.
I’m so glad I use digital camera’s and not film or I would be purchasing all kind of film on ebay.
Having Bipolar is confusing.  Your never know what will happen next.  Some where along the line I triggered all of this.
The following is something I read on Hypomania Episode symptoms.

“A hypomanic episode is not a disorder in itself, but rather a description of a part of a type of bipolar II disorder. Hypomanic episodes have the same symptoms as manic episodes with two important differences: (1) the mood usually isn’t severe enough to cause problems with the person working or socializing with others (e.g., they don’t have to take time off work during the episode), or to require hospitalization; and (2) there are never any psychotic features present in a hypomanic episode.

Here are the symptoms I found
  • Decreased need for sleep (e.g., feels rested after only 3 hours of sleep)
  • More talkative than usual or pressure to keep talking
  • Flight of ideas or subjective experience that thoughts are racing
  • Distractibility – yes I can switch to another idea quickly
  • Increase in goal-directed activity (either socially, at work or school, or sexually (not me, what sex!) or agitation
  • Excessive involvement in pleasurable activities that have a high potential for painful consequences (e.g., the person engages in unrestrained buying sprees, sexual indiscretions, or foolish business investments)
There’s a possibility that my episodes were brought on from a cortisone shot in my hip.  I was sick with high pressure, nausea, hot flashes and irritability.
I went to my doctor and she put me back on Bipolar medicine Depakote, Now I read the side effects and they weren’t good – depression, and damage to liver.  I have hepatitis and this is not good.  Every medication says that.  I haven’t started it yet because I’m scared to. So what do I do?

The Madness Takes Over – Yikes!

evil eyeBe! prepared I’m going to rant

I’m a mount of confusion.  I can’t think straight or make a decision on something I either want to buy or do. When this happens I get stressed and anxious.  This whole week has been stressful trying to make decisions 1) on where I want to go on vacation.  Yes that simple. 2) What camera do I really want ?  The evil eye is upon me.

I’d make 5 reservations to different hotels and locations because I couldn’t make up my mind. then I would question myself is this really where I want to stay, and is this really where I want to go?  I sometimes think money grows on trees.

All of this boiled up in me and I exploded.  Sweating, confused, anxious. It was so bad I ran out of the house, got in the car and raced to get some wine.  I was so happy that the bad feelings went away.  But guess what?  It all came back the next day.

I let the vacation sit for a few days and did some research. When I finally calmed down I asked myself what have I always wanted to do on a trip? I wanted to see waterfalls, stay in a cabin and make great photography. It was really by accident that I came across a cabin in the mountains with waterfalls. Yes, that’s it!  I booked it so fast my head spinned.  As my luck is the owner emailed me and said someone had already booked that cabin.  Rats!   But, he said he had another one a little nicer and would give it to me for the same price.  Yea!

On the other side – I’m not happy with the camera I bought – a Canon Rebel T5.  I don’t like it as much as the Nikon I had.  I couldn’t afford a new one so I immediately got on ebay and search for a used Nikon D90 and bought a new 18-105 f2.8 lens. No the megapixels aren’t that great but they were in those days.   I was using this Canon and I couldn’t figure out something so I lost my patience and got frustrated.  I need another camera!  If I don’t watch it I’ll have 4 or 5 cameras until I’m satisfied.

With ADD and manic depression decision-making is difficult especially getting older. My mind just spins out of control.  We need to just stop the madness and realized things will work out. It will make you sick..   Sometimes I wish I smoked again.

Not Bipolar

Vickie Hibler Photography©

Vickie Hibler Photography©

There’s been many changes in my life since my last blog. I’ve gone through a lot of mental changes.

I went to another psychiatrist and he took me off all my medications – Lithium, and Paxil, except Trazodone and my blood pressure pills.  Instead, he gave me Latuda a new Bipolar medication.   The problem?  It was too expensive especially living on medicare.  There was nothing left for me to take. I’ve taken just about every medication you could almost think of tand they caused hallucinations, blackouts, seizures and memory loss. I lost a lot of memory taking Lithium. So I went cold turkey and got off Lithium and Paxil and didn’t experience any manic episodes.  With hepatitis c I have to be careful with medications I can take.

After 6 months my head was clearer than it had ever been.  I thought about all the bipolar stuff and remembered a guy I met in the mental hospital who had bipolar. We talked about it a lot, and I couldn’t relate since I’ve never had manic episodes the way he did.  I saw him get really sick and it was scary.  So I thought, well maybe I was misdiagnosed and it was ADD, depression and anxiety the whole time, and not Bipolar.

I did have to go back to my old doctor and get some anxiety medicine, Clonazepam, and Paxil for depression.  This has been working rather well.  I’ve always had anxiety but never really got treated for it.  I use to have bad panic attacks in the middle of the night after my abusive relationship, which is where the Trazodone came in.

I asked the doctor if she thought it was possible that the doctor at the mental hospital classified me as bipolar after attempting suicide after becoming terribly depressed, and started binge drinking, because he wanted to call it something. And this is after my son told me he was going into the military for six years, and my boyfriend was sleeping with another woman 20 years younger.  I couldn’t take all that so I drank to make it go away.  That one trip to the mental hospital became my desolate trip through life.  I had a stamp on my head.  “I’m Bipolar.”

Lithium Took My Emotions

Vickie Hibler Photography©

Vickie Hibler Photography©

I truly believe while I was on Lithium it took my soul from me. I had no emotions – I didn’t cry and I was a cold inside.  Things that I use to be passionate about were gone.

I’ve been off Lithium for a month now and I feel like a real person again.  Now, I cry when I watch a feel good movie, and laugh when something is funny.  It’s good to feel that again.  My anxiety level isn’t as high, but I still get it occasionally, but not as bad.

in 1999, I was diagnosed with bipolar/manic depression.  Why?  I attempted suicide and drank too much.  Why?  Sometimes we can only handle so much that we just break down.  I found my boyfriend of 5 years in bed with a girl 20 years younger, and my son informed me he was going in the army for 6 years.  That was enough to send me over the edge

I started binge drinking and then I fell into major depression, which I call “Major Depressive Disorder”.  This is a variety of different moods.  I was so depressed and felt like I had nothing left in the world.  I felt like everyone leaves me.

Is bipolar the name to give to someone who is very depressed.  I’ve seen a really bad bipolar case and I was nothing like that. If anything I’m manic.  I can get on a high same as hyper which I’ve had all my life but couldn’t that have been my ADHD?  Who knows.

Am I Bipolar or Not

Please what I’m about to say is not for everyone to try.

For years I’ve been told I had Bipolar – it started when I became very depressed because of a traumatic incident that happen to me. To much was too much for me to handle, so I started drinking a lot then a suicide attempt.  I committed myself to a mental health hospital where I was diagnosed with bipolar.  Was I diagnosed because I was depressed, or because at the time I wanted to end my life?

That was back in 1999 when I was diagnosed with Bipolar.  Is Bipolar just a name they give you if your depressed?  While in the hospital I saw people who truly were bipolar and it was scary.  I never got that way.  They drugged me so much while in the hospital I didn’t know my head from my ass.

Recently, I went to a new psychiatrist,  because I had moved and wanted to get closer to home.  I wasn’t sure I liked him, because he seem so mean.  When I met him he seem to know what was wrong with me before any testing.  It’s because I told him.  He said that the Lithium was not doing me any good on a low dose.  It was hurting me more than anything – killing my kidneys and liver.  Also, I was taking meds that didn’t work together.  He said, I had a dead brain.  He said, I probably had slept apnea since my  neck was thick.  Once again a doctor putting things in my head.  He took me off all my medications except two and my blood pressure medication and put me on Latuda with Celexa.  That combo did not work it made me sick.  So he put me back on my Trazodone that I had been taking for 35 years. It worked.  He scheduled an appointment in two weeks.

I had to tell the doctor that I had forgotten I was leaving to go out-of-town could we reschedule.  Instead of a week he rescheduled me in about a month.  I asked why he said,”well if you cancel I put you back some. Ridiculous!  It was like he was punishing me for changing the appointment. He also threatened that if I did not like his plans, I could go see another doctor.  When I asked for more samples because I was running out – he said, “sorry but I’m going on vacation” and I don’t leave medicines with the front desk.  I was like “I can’t be off my bipolar medication for 2 weeks!”  He just said “sorry”. I was livid and pissed.  How can a doctor talk to you that way by threatening you and trying to control you.  I wrote him an email telling him doctor’s don’t treat their patients that way and I don’t want to see anyone that does.  I never heard from him.

Today, I feel better than I ever had. I actually feel things, my mind is clear, my eyes aren’t blurry, and I sleep better. Oh, I get confused, but that’s my ADD, which I know I have and had since I was born. I feel I was treated for the wrong thing.  THIS, makes me angry going through life feeling like crap by taking the wrong medications.

What I did isn’t for any body – just pick doctors carefully.  The controlling doctor is not what I needed but it did make me think about my future.

(grammar and English are not my strengths)

Bipolar:New Psychologist New Medication

I finally met with my new psychologist  a couple of weeks ago and at first I was scared of him but then realized he was there to help and knew what he was talking about it, specially, about medications.  He read me right away.  He was worried that I wasn’t  dead yet with all the over medicated crap I’ve been taken.  I have a box of medications that doctors prescribed that I couldn’t take.  Oh, if only I had that money back.  If only he would have said “Oh, you don’t have Bipolar.” I wouldn’t know whether to kiss him or kill  him after all these years.

My medications were Lithium, Celexa, Trazodone, Adderall, 3 blood pressures, plus, hydrocodone, and Lorespam.   Now I’m taking Latuda 40%, Celexa, and 3 blood pressure pills.  He said I wasn’t taking enough Lithium, and  was harming me more the helping me. He called me brain-dead. HA!  My memory was lacking, confusion, slurred speech, vertigo and loads of body pain.

I’ve been on Latuda for six days now. He told me I would  have a clearer head (waiting), memory would get better, maybe some weight loss, and I hope he’s right. Here’s my journey from this week.  First I must add – I was to restrain from all alcohol which I did.

Day one took Latuda and Celexa at 10 pm

Morning – atenolol, Amolophine, hydrochlorothiazide

I was fine the first day with a little tiredness like I always do

Day 2

I cleaned the house like I never had – felt real good  but a light headed at times.

Day 3 (wed) I got up and went walking worked on some jewelry and by afternoon I was tired and went to bed early.

Day 4 Woke up at 430 am WHY!! Decided to walk to the beach came back and worked on jewelry and napped in the afternoon so tired. Went to bed early – tired of being awake.

Day 5 – Woke early 4:30 am!  Big day – First Friday at the Art Gallery – This was a bad day.  I was feeling light-headed, hands shake, confusion, slurred words – I was knocking things off tables that night – I was sweating real bad – drank a glass of wine felt better. Went home and to bed early.

Day 6 – Wake up early AGAIN! Went for the walk – came home and stayed on the couch all day.  Feeling anxious, light-headed, sweating, tired, and went to bed early –

Day 7 – Yes again! This time 5 am,.  Feeling semi good. Feeling like – need to do something. Bur raining.  A great excuse to do nothing.

All in all I guess this is okay considering I cold turkey the Lithium – with doctors advise – don’t do it without a doctor’s permission – I wasn’t taking enough to do too much harm on cold turkey.  More – it could harm you.

DON’T EVER STOP PRESCRIBED DRUGS UNLESS YOU GET ORDERS FROM YOUR DOCTORS OR EVEN MIX ANY DRUGS –  DRUGS DON’T MIX WELL WITH LETHAL DRUGS, BEER, WINE, ETC.