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amberpep
@amberpep

Posts: 610
Joined: Jul 02, 2012

~ Tracking Bipolar II swings ~

Posted by @amberpep, Oct 2, 2016

Hi all …. well, I finally decided to make up a chart for myself to see how often and rapidly my mood swings happen. I’ve made it up and I’ll start tomorrow. I’ve got room for morning, noon, and night because they can all be different …. it’s crazy-making! My “up” time, for me, is very high anxiety rather than a manic state. Once the Klonopin kicks in, it settles it. My “up” also can be what other people’s “normal” would be. The few times I have felt I was a bit manic was usually medication induced, and that’s when I went shopping on-line ….. thus the CC bills I am now paying off. I hope this makes sense to you all. The depression is a whole other story …… that digs in deeply. That’s when I want to avoid anything and anyone, don’t answer the door, phone, or even get out of the chair. So, we’ll see what the chart shows, although I think I know already. It’s pretty much the same pattern every day. I have done a good bit of writing, I call them “musings” ever since I started this journey 15 – 20 years ago, and I found myself needing to write one today. They’re nothing profound, just thoughts coming from my inner soul. I enjoy it, and please don’t think I’m sounding snobby here, but when I look back and read them, I’m rather amazed at the way I’ve expressed myself. You just never know what little treasures may be dug up while we all walk through these “troubled waters.”
abby

Liked by Kim

REPLY

Good Morning, @amberpep… 🙂 My name is Kim. I’ve been a member of Mayo Connect, I think almost 3 months. Sometimes I’m just a “reader”, taking in information, experiences, and feelings of others, from the many forums here. Then, like now, I find my fingers just hit that keyboard and I send off a reply.
You may already believe this, in yourself, as you walk a difficult path… but know YOU are a survivor. A survivor of everything you’ve experienced.
I personally know, the toughest days seem to last an eternity, and the good days sometimes feel like they are gone, if you dare to blink.
Your charting idea is wonderful! You may very well know what the outcome will be… but don’t give up hope that you may find “triggers”, or “patterns” you haven’t really noticed, over the years. It’s such a wonderful idea, I truly hope your charting unveils something you may not yet have noticed @amberpep.
I don’t have a diagnosis of Bipolar. I do have high anxiety, panic attacks, depression, OCD, and chronic pain. I could add to this list but I may need the entire forum page… I’m sure, that one day; my entire medical list will have found itself, among the many forum pages in Connect.
I am currently on Klonopin, as well. I was diagnosed with depression, many years ago, and have been to war with it, more times than I can count.
However, I was never put on any medications, or treatment for the anxiety, panic attacks, OCD I had/ and continue to be overcome by.
** (How did I start taking Klonopin… what I’m about to share, is a bit off topic, but STILL makes me laugh, after 5 years. I had somehow gotten a very bad and painful infection, in my toenail. I tried to treat it on my own but I finally had given in and made an appt to have it checked by my PCP. When I went to this appt, I was told I would be seeing a “new” Dr. as mine had “left”. So, this new Dr., who was an interim Dr, was lucky enough to treat my toenail issue. When she asked what I had been doing to treat it, I ran through my list of home remedies… soaking it, using antibiotic ointment… etc. And she asked, “What have you been soaking it in?” as she continued to poke at it… I looked down at her and said, “Milk”. lol 🙂 She looked so animated as she slowly moved her head, to look up at me. The look on her face was priceless! “Milk?” she asked with a grin on her lips. “Yes, milk.” She remained professional but did share a laugh with me when I told her nothing else had made the pain stop, so I could get relief, until… I tried milk. (It was just SO cold and felt SO great at the time. lol) ~Milk may do a body good, for many… but I affirm, it won’t cure an infected toenail. 🙂 ~
Because of my milk soaked toenail, I crossed paths with this new Doctor.
As an interim, Dr. she was wonderful! She did a complete exam on me, and noted that I had a diagnosis of Depression. She told me she saw many OCD, and “has high anxiety”, notes in my med chart. But no treatment plan for it. Which was true. And, it was a paralyzing demon to deal with daily. She spoke with me, in depth, and stated she also saw these characteristics, in my behavior as we spoke. She wanted to add/try me on a new med, to take with my anti-depressant. She started me on .5mg of Klonopin, to be taken 3x’s a day. I now take, 1mg, 2x’s a day. We followed up many times, until she too, left the clinic. )**
Klonopin is by NO means, a miracle cure or the best med for many people… but what a difference it started to make, for me, as a “helper” when dealing with my anxiety/panic attacks. I’m stubborn as can be, and have never liked medication. (I was also seeing a therapist, and she noted many positive changes in my “coping strategies” after I started on Klonopin.)
I apologize for going off topic… @amberpep what caught my interest in your post, which was so easy to read, it just flowed, was your “writing”… “musings” as you referred to them. I love the “musing” term you refer to your writing as! 🙂 I LOVE to write! It’s been my catharsis, my escape, “the unloading of my head” and sometimes the only place I truly feel safe enough, to unleash my truly emotional thoughts & feelings.
Your musing’s come from your inner soul, Abby… so to me, they ARE profound! Only YOU know what your inner soul feels, experiences, loves/dislikes… etc. YOU do not sound snobby at all! I quote you; “…when I look back and read them,I’m rather amazed at the way I’ve expressed myself. You just never know what little treasures may be dug up while we all walk through these “troubled waters.”

@kimsworld

Good Morning, @amberpep… 🙂 My name is Kim. I’ve been a member of Mayo Connect, I think almost 3 months. Sometimes I’m just a “reader”, taking in information, experiences, and feelings of others, from the many forums here. Then, like now, I find my fingers just hit that keyboard and I send off a reply.
You may already believe this, in yourself, as you walk a difficult path… but know YOU are a survivor. A survivor of everything you’ve experienced.
I personally know, the toughest days seem to last an eternity, and the good days sometimes feel like they are gone, if you dare to blink.
Your charting idea is wonderful! You may very well know what the outcome will be… but don’t give up hope that you may find “triggers”, or “patterns” you haven’t really noticed, over the years. It’s such a wonderful idea, I truly hope your charting unveils something you may not yet have noticed @amberpep.
I don’t have a diagnosis of Bipolar. I do have high anxiety, panic attacks, depression, OCD, and chronic pain. I could add to this list but I may need the entire forum page… I’m sure, that one day; my entire medical list will have found itself, among the many forum pages in Connect.
I am currently on Klonopin, as well. I was diagnosed with depression, many years ago, and have been to war with it, more times than I can count.
However, I was never put on any medications, or treatment for the anxiety, panic attacks, OCD I had/ and continue to be overcome by.
** (How did I start taking Klonopin… what I’m about to share, is a bit off topic, but STILL makes me laugh, after 5 years. I had somehow gotten a very bad and painful infection, in my toenail. I tried to treat it on my own but I finally had given in and made an appt to have it checked by my PCP. When I went to this appt, I was told I would be seeing a “new” Dr. as mine had “left”. So, this new Dr., who was an interim Dr, was lucky enough to treat my toenail issue. When she asked what I had been doing to treat it, I ran through my list of home remedies… soaking it, using antibiotic ointment… etc. And she asked, “What have you been soaking it in?” as she continued to poke at it… I looked down at her and said, “Milk”. lol 🙂 She looked so animated as she slowly moved her head, to look up at me. The look on her face was priceless! “Milk?” she asked with a grin on her lips. “Yes, milk.” She remained professional but did share a laugh with me when I told her nothing else had made the pain stop, so I could get relief, until… I tried milk. (It was just SO cold and felt SO great at the time. lol) ~Milk may do a body good, for many… but I affirm, it won’t cure an infected toenail. 🙂 ~
Because of my milk soaked toenail, I crossed paths with this new Doctor.
As an interim, Dr. she was wonderful! She did a complete exam on me, and noted that I had a diagnosis of Depression. She told me she saw many OCD, and “has high anxiety”, notes in my med chart. But no treatment plan for it. Which was true. And, it was a paralyzing demon to deal with daily. She spoke with me, in depth, and stated she also saw these characteristics, in my behavior as we spoke. She wanted to add/try me on a new med, to take with my anti-depressant. She started me on .5mg of Klonopin, to be taken 3x’s a day. I now take, 1mg, 2x’s a day. We followed up many times, until she too, left the clinic. )**
Klonopin is by NO means, a miracle cure or the best med for many people… but what a difference it started to make, for me, as a “helper” when dealing with my anxiety/panic attacks. I’m stubborn as can be, and have never liked medication. (I was also seeing a therapist, and she noted many positive changes in my “coping strategies” after I started on Klonopin.)
I apologize for going off topic… @amberpep what caught my interest in your post, which was so easy to read, it just flowed, was your “writing”… “musings” as you referred to them. I love the “musing” term you refer to your writing as! 🙂 I LOVE to write! It’s been my catharsis, my escape, “the unloading of my head” and sometimes the only place I truly feel safe enough, to unleash my truly emotional thoughts & feelings.
Your musing’s come from your inner soul, Abby… so to me, they ARE profound! Only YOU know what your inner soul feels, experiences, loves/dislikes… etc. YOU do not sound snobby at all! I quote you; “…when I look back and read them,I’m rather amazed at the way I’ve expressed myself. You just never know what little treasures may be dug up while we all walk through these “troubled waters.”

Jump to this post

I have SO many completed journals, from over the years, and I do look through them at times. You are SO right, going back, re-reading my entries, and how I felt then, vs. now… is often times, all it takes to help restore some calmness and “Oh, see I lived through this feeling before” affirmations. “Treasures”. Our validation that WE are, Survivor’s! Writing doesn’t always have to make sense; it requires no grammar, or correct spelling. It just has to allow the writer to shed the burden, and weight of what is troubling them, making them happy, etc. Because it is profound, and so often a healing of the soul!
I wrote a book, not a reply… 🙂 It happens to me a lot. Abby, I wish you; the VERY best… keep on “musing”. 🙂 Best wishes always, ~ Kim

.

^.I apologize for the extra post, with no post.. lol I seem to be experiencing.. “technical difficulties”.. * sigh * 🙂

@kimsworld

Good Morning, @amberpep… 🙂 My name is Kim. I’ve been a member of Mayo Connect, I think almost 3 months. Sometimes I’m just a “reader”, taking in information, experiences, and feelings of others, from the many forums here. Then, like now, I find my fingers just hit that keyboard and I send off a reply.
You may already believe this, in yourself, as you walk a difficult path… but know YOU are a survivor. A survivor of everything you’ve experienced.
I personally know, the toughest days seem to last an eternity, and the good days sometimes feel like they are gone, if you dare to blink.
Your charting idea is wonderful! You may very well know what the outcome will be… but don’t give up hope that you may find “triggers”, or “patterns” you haven’t really noticed, over the years. It’s such a wonderful idea, I truly hope your charting unveils something you may not yet have noticed @amberpep.
I don’t have a diagnosis of Bipolar. I do have high anxiety, panic attacks, depression, OCD, and chronic pain. I could add to this list but I may need the entire forum page… I’m sure, that one day; my entire medical list will have found itself, among the many forum pages in Connect.
I am currently on Klonopin, as well. I was diagnosed with depression, many years ago, and have been to war with it, more times than I can count.
However, I was never put on any medications, or treatment for the anxiety, panic attacks, OCD I had/ and continue to be overcome by.
** (How did I start taking Klonopin… what I’m about to share, is a bit off topic, but STILL makes me laugh, after 5 years. I had somehow gotten a very bad and painful infection, in my toenail. I tried to treat it on my own but I finally had given in and made an appt to have it checked by my PCP. When I went to this appt, I was told I would be seeing a “new” Dr. as mine had “left”. So, this new Dr., who was an interim Dr, was lucky enough to treat my toenail issue. When she asked what I had been doing to treat it, I ran through my list of home remedies… soaking it, using antibiotic ointment… etc. And she asked, “What have you been soaking it in?” as she continued to poke at it… I looked down at her and said, “Milk”. lol 🙂 She looked so animated as she slowly moved her head, to look up at me. The look on her face was priceless! “Milk?” she asked with a grin on her lips. “Yes, milk.” She remained professional but did share a laugh with me when I told her nothing else had made the pain stop, so I could get relief, until… I tried milk. (It was just SO cold and felt SO great at the time. lol) ~Milk may do a body good, for many… but I affirm, it won’t cure an infected toenail. 🙂 ~
Because of my milk soaked toenail, I crossed paths with this new Doctor.
As an interim, Dr. she was wonderful! She did a complete exam on me, and noted that I had a diagnosis of Depression. She told me she saw many OCD, and “has high anxiety”, notes in my med chart. But no treatment plan for it. Which was true. And, it was a paralyzing demon to deal with daily. She spoke with me, in depth, and stated she also saw these characteristics, in my behavior as we spoke. She wanted to add/try me on a new med, to take with my anti-depressant. She started me on .5mg of Klonopin, to be taken 3x’s a day. I now take, 1mg, 2x’s a day. We followed up many times, until she too, left the clinic. )**
Klonopin is by NO means, a miracle cure or the best med for many people… but what a difference it started to make, for me, as a “helper” when dealing with my anxiety/panic attacks. I’m stubborn as can be, and have never liked medication. (I was also seeing a therapist, and she noted many positive changes in my “coping strategies” after I started on Klonopin.)
I apologize for going off topic… @amberpep what caught my interest in your post, which was so easy to read, it just flowed, was your “writing”… “musings” as you referred to them. I love the “musing” term you refer to your writing as! 🙂 I LOVE to write! It’s been my catharsis, my escape, “the unloading of my head” and sometimes the only place I truly feel safe enough, to unleash my truly emotional thoughts & feelings.
Your musing’s come from your inner soul, Abby… so to me, they ARE profound! Only YOU know what your inner soul feels, experiences, loves/dislikes… etc. YOU do not sound snobby at all! I quote you; “…when I look back and read them,I’m rather amazed at the way I’ve expressed myself. You just never know what little treasures may be dug up while we all walk through these “troubled waters.”

Jump to this post

Thank you Kim for your dear reply. It truly meant a lot to me, and I may print it out on those day when I feel “worthless.” Yes, you just never know what nuggets maybe buried within us as we walk those thorny and painful paths.
Take care my friend …. Abby

Liked by Kim, Crystal

@kimsworld

^.I apologize for the extra post, with no post.. lol I seem to be experiencing.. “technical difficulties”.. * sigh * 🙂

Jump to this post

Just like Cable TV. 🙂
Abby

Liked by Kim

Hi everyone, well I’m new to this site & Bipolar altogether. I’ve worked around a mixture of consumers with mental illness & although I believe I’ve always had little symptoms of bipolar I just ignored them. Well long story short, in the last few months my systems have become very profound. I’ve become more depressed then usual, very very irritated with work, life, just everything. I stay up for hours @ night, sometimes not even sleeping because I’m planning or goal setting witch is not normal for me. My eye twitches all the time, & over the past couple of years I’ve distanced myself from family & friends & no longer have the pleasure of doing things I loved to do like gym 2-3xs a week & doing fun things with my children/family. I’ve recently made me a Doc appointment with a highly recommended psychiatrist, but with me being a new patient my appointment isn’t until March 13th. my biggest fear is not knowing how I will respond to medication if I am indeed Bipolar & my second fear is weight gain because im already struggling with my weight already. Any advice anyone?

@sincere

Hi everyone, well I’m new to this site & Bipolar altogether. I’ve worked around a mixture of consumers with mental illness & although I believe I’ve always had little symptoms of bipolar I just ignored them. Well long story short, in the last few months my systems have become very profound. I’ve become more depressed then usual, very very irritated with work, life, just everything. I stay up for hours @ night, sometimes not even sleeping because I’m planning or goal setting witch is not normal for me. My eye twitches all the time, & over the past couple of years I’ve distanced myself from family & friends & no longer have the pleasure of doing things I loved to do like gym 2-3xs a week & doing fun things with my children/family. I’ve recently made me a Doc appointment with a highly recommended psychiatrist, but with me being a new patient my appointment isn’t until March 13th. my biggest fear is not knowing how I will respond to medication if I am indeed Bipolar & my second fear is weight gain because im already struggling with my weight already. Any advice anyone?

Jump to this post

Welcome to Connect, Crystal. Good for you for being proactive, getting a good recommendation and making the doctor’s appointment. March is a ways off, so I’m glad you reached out to this community for support in the meantime.
Along with Amber and Kim, I’d like you to meet a few other members, like @cathy615 @lesbatts @artstapleton @berit who have spoken about bipolar here on Connect. You may also wish to read through and comment on this discussion:
– What to do for socially phobic depression and anxiety & bipolar http://mayocl.in/2dN8mMk
– Depression and anxiety: Exercise eases symptoms http://mayocl.in/2dcJB7p

Not wanting to go to the gym and struggling with weight gain is a difficult combination to wrangle with. Crystal, are you able to encourage yourself go to the gym even if you don’t want to go? The after effects can be so beneficial.

@sincere

Hi everyone, well I’m new to this site & Bipolar altogether. I’ve worked around a mixture of consumers with mental illness & although I believe I’ve always had little symptoms of bipolar I just ignored them. Well long story short, in the last few months my systems have become very profound. I’ve become more depressed then usual, very very irritated with work, life, just everything. I stay up for hours @ night, sometimes not even sleeping because I’m planning or goal setting witch is not normal for me. My eye twitches all the time, & over the past couple of years I’ve distanced myself from family & friends & no longer have the pleasure of doing things I loved to do like gym 2-3xs a week & doing fun things with my children/family. I’ve recently made me a Doc appointment with a highly recommended psychiatrist, but with me being a new patient my appointment isn’t until March 13th. my biggest fear is not knowing how I will respond to medication if I am indeed Bipolar & my second fear is weight gain because im already struggling with my weight already. Any advice anyone?

Jump to this post

Welcome Crystal …. you’ve come to the right place, hon. You’re totally safe here and among like-minded friends. I was very much like you. I had been depressed probably since early teen (whole family alcoholic/only child/ beatings/locked in closets, etc.), but of course when you’re that age, it’s just a phase or something that will pass. It didn’t. I had terrible PPDepression after my 1st child, again “it’ll pass” … which it didn’t … just got worse. About 25 years ago, I “hit the wall” emotionally, but of course I didn’t tell anyone because I “knew” they’d “put me away.” Finally I went to my PCP and she wisely sent me to a Psychiatrist, telling me she didn’t deal with psychotropic meds. A PSYCHIATRIST ….. OMG … THEY ARE ALL WEIRD … so I thought. Well, I went, he was not weird at all …. in fact very kind and really “heard” me. That was my beginning. I’ve since moved, but I still drive, every other week back to see my therapist, and my Psychiatrist about every 2 months for a med. check. It became obvious it was Bipolar II, a somewhat milder version of Bipolar I. The Bipolar I have is very heavy on the depression side while the “manic” side is merely other folk’s “happy.” Like you I was afraid of “head meds.” When my Psychiatrist first Rx-d me Zoloft …. I thought “oh no …. not those kinds of meds.” I knew they’d make me “nuts.” (very irrational thinking). Well, that was pre-computer time for me, so I immediately went to the Library, read all about it, went home, and I took only 1/2 of the tablet. I laid down (in case I’d die from it!!!!) and slept for 3 hours ….. the first real sleep I’d had in many years. And so it goes …. now it’s 25 years later, I’ve had a lot of stuff in my life, divorce, a major move which I didn’t want, and all the other typical stuff we go through … there’s been a lot of ups and downs, with the downs being the deepest. I take 4 meds., and Crystal I must tell you that as scared as I was of these meds., they have saved my life, along with my Psychiatrist and Therapist. It’s sort of like a triangle …. they are all working to help me. I was afraid of side effects too, and yes, I did gain a bit (not a whole pile) of weight, but my question to me was “would I rather be thin and be depressed, or would I rather have a few x-tra pounds and feel better.” It was obvious to me what was the answer. Psychiatrists usually start you out very slowly on any of these meds. Mine had me call him every other day, and I went back in 10 days. Then he slowly bumped it up until it seemed to be working. But, I really think, if not all, then most of them move very slowly in adding med., and move it up very gradually. March would feel a long way away for me …. did you tell them that you really need to get in before that? They surely have a waiting list – as folks often cancel and then there’s an opening. Take care of yourself Crystal ….. remember you’re the only one who can and you totally, 100% deserve to feel better and be happier. Bless you,
Abby

Hi Crystal!
I am Cathy and 62. Was treated for depression for years and then had my first manic episode and hospitalization July 2015. One thing that worries me with your long wait til March is that your symptoms may continue to get worse. For myself I know i exacerbated my mania by not sleeping…maybe 8 hours a week instead of a night for over a month! It was my daughter who helped me see i needed to be in the hospital; by then i was talking nonstop,hypersexual, and kind of causing trouble everywhere.

I also recently took part in a study that emphasizes how important routine is: go to bed, get up same time every day, meals, exercise, etc. The structure helps our brains. So i think making sure you sleep is of utmost importance. Can you try to see another pdoc to “tide you over” or see if your pcp can help? Also try to get a support group in place for you, just a few family members or friends that you trust.

As far as meds go, i am allergic to Depakoate and lamictal. Lithium was affecting my thyrhoid and kidneys. Abilify worked great at least while i was still manic, even lost weight on it, but then i lost insurance and medicaid wouldn’t pay for it. Now i am on seroquel, fluoxetine, and buproprion. And i have to say i am gaining weight. Aargh! I had lapband surgery 7 years ago and lost 160 pounds. I don’t want to gain ir back!!!! And i am also one who can’t seem to get off the couch, let alone to the gymn.

Meds act so differently with different people, you may have to put up with a lot of trial and error, or maybe you will be lucky and get it right right away. I sure hope so!

There is a group called Depressive Bipolar Support Alliance (dbsa.org) that offers a tremendous range of resources: including online and in person support groups as well as educational info.

I wish you the best and please let us know how you’re doing, Crystal!
Cathy

@sincere

Hi everyone, well I’m new to this site & Bipolar altogether. I’ve worked around a mixture of consumers with mental illness & although I believe I’ve always had little symptoms of bipolar I just ignored them. Well long story short, in the last few months my systems have become very profound. I’ve become more depressed then usual, very very irritated with work, life, just everything. I stay up for hours @ night, sometimes not even sleeping because I’m planning or goal setting witch is not normal for me. My eye twitches all the time, & over the past couple of years I’ve distanced myself from family & friends & no longer have the pleasure of doing things I loved to do like gym 2-3xs a week & doing fun things with my children/family. I’ve recently made me a Doc appointment with a highly recommended psychiatrist, but with me being a new patient my appointment isn’t until March 13th. my biggest fear is not knowing how I will respond to medication if I am indeed Bipolar & my second fear is weight gain because im already struggling with my weight already. Any advice anyone?

Jump to this post

No i just dont have the drive, push, potivation or will to go. I wouls really love to go, bc I know how good i use to feel in the pass. I just gave up on it

@cathy615

Hi Crystal!
I am Cathy and 62. Was treated for depression for years and then had my first manic episode and hospitalization July 2015. One thing that worries me with your long wait til March is that your symptoms may continue to get worse. For myself I know i exacerbated my mania by not sleeping…maybe 8 hours a week instead of a night for over a month! It was my daughter who helped me see i needed to be in the hospital; by then i was talking nonstop,hypersexual, and kind of causing trouble everywhere.

I also recently took part in a study that emphasizes how important routine is: go to bed, get up same time every day, meals, exercise, etc. The structure helps our brains. So i think making sure you sleep is of utmost importance. Can you try to see another pdoc to “tide you over” or see if your pcp can help? Also try to get a support group in place for you, just a few family members or friends that you trust.

As far as meds go, i am allergic to Depakoate and lamictal. Lithium was affecting my thyrhoid and kidneys. Abilify worked great at least while i was still manic, even lost weight on it, but then i lost insurance and medicaid wouldn’t pay for it. Now i am on seroquel, fluoxetine, and buproprion. And i have to say i am gaining weight. Aargh! I had lapband surgery 7 years ago and lost 160 pounds. I don’t want to gain ir back!!!! And i am also one who can’t seem to get off the couch, let alone to the gymn.

Meds act so differently with different people, you may have to put up with a lot of trial and error, or maybe you will be lucky and get it right right away. I sure hope so!

There is a group called Depressive Bipolar Support Alliance (dbsa.org) that offers a tremendous range of resources: including online and in person support groups as well as educational info.

I wish you the best and please let us know how you’re doing, Crystal!
Cathy

Jump to this post

Thank you & I will luv. Yes i hate i haft to wait so long, & im hoping i dont go off on anyone before march gets here. Ugh

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