An End to Hypomania and Meds

I’ve been sleeping well for almost a week now, through the night and some during the day – a sure sign my hypomania has passed. I am even dreading the Stitch Fix box I have coming that I was ready and willing to buy all of even though I bought the whole thing last month, which is a lot of money. 

I am not as silly or flighty or agitated. I’m more tired than I’d like to be and hope I don’t start getting depressed, especially when summer break starts and I have no more alone time like I do now with the kids in school all day.

My youngest one makes a lot of demands on me and it wears me out fast. Then I get irritated at her.  Then I feel guilty for getting irritated at her.  Then I feel trapped in this cycle and the depression sets in.  I’ll have to pray about this and ponder a way out of this pattern that seems to occur each summer.

I have to take it easy and slow throughout the day with lots of breaks, but she wants to be on the go, go, go. I feel guilty that I can’t be one of those moms. Guilty enough that I’ll push myself and try to be sometimes, only to end up sick and in tears from being overwhelmed, and worst of all full of self-hate because I have failed.

Maybe she can help me problem solve some ways to do stuff without me being the one who has to do it all with her. The problem is most, if not all, of her friends parents work and I don’t, so I end up being the activity driver and supervisor.

She is old enough to go to the neighborhood pool alone with friends this year, so that will help. However, if she’s anything like my other ones, once they became old enough to go without an adult, they were no longer really interested in going. Sigh.

I am down to one topamax a day. After Wednesday I will be off of it totally. So far, I haven’t noticed anything different about my migraines or mood from coming off of it. I am thankful for that.  I am so excited to be able to cut out one of my medicines since I am on so many. 

It makes me want to try to wean off of another one. Maybe the propranolol, which I may do if I get the Botox for migraines and that works. I’ll need my nuerologist’s help to wean off that because I only have 80mg capsules (can’t cut them into smaller doses.)

The other one I may try because I am not sure if I need it any more is the resperidal. Is anyone else on this?  At what dose and what are you on it for?  

I’ve been on it for so long that I forget why my doctor started me on it. I want to say bedtime anxiety since I take it several hours before bed so it can kick in by bedtime and help me fall asleep, but I can’t be sure. Since starting the resperidal, two other medications have been added that knock me out at night, so I am hoping I can get by without the resperidal.

But, I can’t come off two medicines at the same time. So, I’ll have to decide after I’m off the topamax for a little bit. I’m leaning toward the resperidal since I can do it on my own, although with summer coming, and its potential stresses as I described above, maybe that is not a good idea. Ugh!  I can’t decide. 

Guess I should talk to my psychiatrist about it. She’s so resistant to decreasing my meds though, because I still have a lot of anxiety and my moods still cycle.  So, yes, I kind of want to do it behind her back and then say, “Hey, look, I got off of a med and I am fine.” I feel like it would be disrespectful to do it without her collaboration, though.  She’s been my doctor for ten years and we are really close. 

I guess that’s about all. I did the dishes and folded some laundry today.  The bathrooms need to be cleaned, but I just can’t gather the motivation to do them. Maybe tomorrow.

Current Mood and Botox for Migraine

Waking up between 4 and 5am every morning is not fun. I’m averaging 3 hours less sleep than normal a day. Still quite agitated throughout the day. Extra energy, racing thoughts, hard to relax, spending too much money.  Hypomania, I guess.

I’m tapering off the topamax starting tonight per my nuerologist’s instructions. Not sure if it really helps anyway and figure it isn’t the best for my kidneys. Hoping it doesn’t increase migraine frequency or negatively affect my mood. 

He wants me to try Botox for migraine treatment prevenitive.  I only get a few migraines a month now and everything I am reading says Botox is for people who get 15 or more migraines a month. 

Have you had Botox for migraine treatment?  Did it help?

Update to Doctor

I told her today about the 4 panic attacks (church, bakery, after the dealership, and grocery store); about the kidney disease stuff, crying all the time, the decrease in propranolol and subsequent double in frequency of migraine; constant worry about the next migraine or panic attack and worry about daughter’s depression.

Hardest thing is the intensity of my anger and sadness. It’s so extreme at times it frightens me. I see red over a minor irritation. A misunderstanding does not just upset me, it leaves me in tears, lamenting like someone has died!

She said with the loss that comes from yet another diagnosis, and because of that my migraines increasing and those not being resolved yet, plus my daughter plus my age and its hormonal changes…this is why I am feeling what I am feeling.  Like crap I say?  Yes!

She told me to increase my Viibryd from 30mg to 40mg a day.  I would rather have a bottle of wine and a pack of cigs, but don’t tell my AA sponsor. ūüėČ

One Less Thing

I had a great report from the kidney doctor yesterday.  My creatinine went from 1.42 to 1.19; my GFR went from 41 to 56, which bumped me up from stage 3 to stage 2. He said the kidney disease was NOT progressive, and as long as I stay away from Alleve, Ibuprofen, and contrast dyes no further damage should occur outside of the normal aging process, because I have no active risk factors. 

I am estactic. Beyond relieved. One less thing to worry about and deal with. Now, just back to my normal crap with the mental illnesses and migraines. 

The migraines, ugh! , have increased this month, I guess due to the decreased propranolol. I am still having dizzy spells even though my blood pressure went up ten points since being on the lower dose of 80mg. BP was 110/80 yesterday instead of 100/70.

I drank a Mountain Dew with my Imitrex this week and had minimal side effects from the medicine. It was incredible!  I’m hoping it wasn’t a fluke.  I know caffeine helps because I’ve tried coffee before, but this was amazing. 

My daughter is struggling again. Anger, irritability, decreased motivation, not wanting to go to school. She refuses to use the light box even though I think it helped before. She thinks it is stupid and doesn’t do anything. She’s being a closed-minded teenager.

I think if we can just get through the rest of the cold, dreary winter days she will be better. In the meantime, it may be rough around here.

She sees the new psychiatrist in a few weeks, who we just told this month that she was doing so well. How quickly things can change!  She’s been acting like this for going on 2 weeks now, so I don’t think it’s like a PMS thing or anything.

I was thinking about how my anxiety has been better lately. I think. I mean I worry about stuff and I have panic attacks here and there, but I don’t feel like I am suffering all of the time because of it.

Everytime I start to get anxious it is usually about our busy schedule and how many things I have to do outside of the house in the week ahead. When that happens, I try to put it out of my mind and just think about today only.  This helps a lot. 

It helps to write all of this out, too. I’m just in a really good place because of my doctor’s visit yesterday. Hoping it lasts. 

Aftermath

The tournament weekend went really well for me.  I stayed in the room Friday night and rested. Socialized Saturday and Sunday.  Handled the convention center crowds like a normal person without the need for a Ativan all weekend until the last morning when we had to pack up and check out before the last day of play. Irritability and agitation set in out of the blue and came on so fast. Luckily the med works quickly to calm my system down. 

Not surprisingly, I had a severe migraine the day after we got back (yesterday).  Today I still feel worn down and depressed. Little things, like showering, unloading the dishwasher, and sweeping the floor, feel like big things. 

This is my third migraine so far this month. I had two in November and three in December. Better than six or eight like I was averaging for the last year. I hope I am done for the month so I can report 2-3 to my doctor and see where he thinks we can go from here; if he even thinks zero is a realistic goal. 

Choosing Wisely When You Have a Mental Illness

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Two weeks ago my neurologist started me on a muscle relaxer for my migraines, and I haven’t been writing here about how it has been affecting me because I write in the mornings, and I’ve been too tired in the mornings to write.¬† So, that is how it has been affecting me.¬† I take it at night before bed, and¬†I still feel exhausted¬†come morning.

I am going to experiment with taking it earlier in the evening, like around 8pm rather than 10pm like I’ve been.¬† Also, since I have gone from taking 10mg of Adderall in the¬†am and 10mg at noon to still 10mg in the am, but only 5mg at noon, I am going to add the 5mg I am not using at noon anymore to my morning routine to help fight off the fatigue from the muscle relaxers.¬† So, I will now be taking 15mg of Adderall in am and the regular 5mg at noon.

For the last two weeks, all I’ve felt like doing during the day is lying around in bed and sleeping.¬† It is not as bad on the weekends because my family is here.¬† I don’t feel depressed, just tired.

I feel tired from the medicine, tired from kid-stress, and tired from kid-activities, and tired from online shopping for myself and for Christmas presents.¬† I’ve been on my phone¬†shopping so much that I am waking up at night with numb hands from carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms!

I started freaking out about the money I have been spending lately, and applied for a job at a retail store against my husband’s advice.¬† The manager called, and after talking to her, I decided I wouldn’t¬†take the job¬†because she needed someone to work more hours than I knew I could handle.

I stopped spending money on myself, even though it is very hard now that I have started.¬† I don’t even go on the app on my¬†phone¬†that I love to browse.

I am also saving money by switching to a new grocery store chain (Walmart.)  The reason I am switching is because I just found out they have a grocery pick up service.  This is an amazing, amazing service!

I order my groceries online, drive to the store, an app on my phone lets them know I am there, and they bring my groceries out to my car and load them in¬†the trunk…for FREE!¬† (The service is free not the groceries ;))

My husband is really loving it because he¬†does¬†most of¬†the shopping because I¬†can’t handle it due to my anxiety.¬† Definitely check and see if they have it available in your area.

I take pictures for a hobby and I am good at it.¬† I could be a professional photographer.¬† People have told me so – even strangers have wanted me to take their pictures.¬† I’ve taken friends’ and family’s portraits rather than them¬†going to¬†a studio.¬† But, my social anxiety and fear of failing and the stress of dealing with potential customer problems keeps me from doing it professionally.

My husband said maybe when the kids are grown and I don’t have the stress of them and their activities going on that I will be able to handle the stresses of a job or of running my own photography business.¬† It’s not that I am unskilled or do not have talent.¬† It’s just that I am only capable of tolerating so much stress before a bipolar mood state is triggered.

I have to accept the reality of that fact no matter how much I dislike it.¬† I have to respect the limits my disorder places on my¬†choices no matter how much I want to fight them.¬† It’s a matter of life or death.

I can choose to die by pushing myself too far past my stress threshold or I can choose to live healthily within the boundaries of my current capabilities.

At one point in my life, I ignored my limits and almost died because of it – overdose, hospital emergency room, inpatient stay, the whole bit.

Today, I choose the latter.  Today, I choose to live.

What do you choose?