Picture this; its 5:45 a.m. and your surrounded by five coworkers. When in the middle of conversations, your supervisor looks at you and says, “you look so much better now. You look so happy and content.” I can’t tell you how astounding that comment was to me. He went on to say that he’s noticed it for a week, but wasn’t sure if it was going to last. He knew, they all know, that I’ve started this journey. He said my new meds must be working, and he’s happy for me.
I smiled and then ducked behind the corner to gain my composure.
I was touched by his words for two reasons. First, because IT’S WORKING! Hallelujah! I feel it’s working, and others notice too! I always knew I was a happy person inside! I can’t tell you what it’s like to feel so many emotions again. For the first time, that I can ever remember, I feel emotions other than panic, anxiety, anger, irritation, aggravation, unbelievable sadness, paranoia and worthlessness. Those emotions ruled my life. Now I feel contentment, happiness, pride, excitement and relaxed. I never knew life could feel this way.
The second reason I was moved by my boss’ comments, was because in a room full of coworkers, aging 19 to 60, they saw the difference. Because I chose to be open and honest about my mental illness, five people now know a little bit more about the disease. They know my struggle, my new diagnosis and treatment. They see the dramatic change. They now have a better understanding, a little more knowledge about mental illness. And THAT is the reason I want to be public about what I’m going through. I’m not alone in this disease, and bi-polar isn’t the only disease. There are hundreds of different versions of mental disease and there are millions suffering from them. The more we know, the more we talk about it, the better the understanding we have of those suffering. There IS help out there for your spouse, your sibling, child, parent or yourself. Just, talk about it.
Since I’ve last blogged, I have had my first Monday off. I enjoyed my day immensely. I did have an already scheduled doctors appointment, but other than that, my day was mine! I lazed around in the morning, I did a little sewing, made some ornaments for my daughter, took a bath and did some reading and watched a bit of Netflix. I even took my sweet grand-daughter for a great walk! It was fabulous.
Yesterday I saw my psychiatrist to touch base. I’m now on 2mg of Respridol a day and down to 75 mg of Effexor. I’m going down to 36.5 mg of Effexor tomorrow and in two weeks try to get off completely. He did tell me if when I go down on Effexor, I start having withdrawals, to go back up. He explained it wasn’t a rush and didn’t want me to be feeling ill. I couldn’t help smiling wide when I told him how well I was doing and he was just as thrilled! He really was. I see my therapist on Friday and can’t wait to share with her, how I’m doing as well.
Please, share this blog. We have 22 veterans a day committing suicide. There a wives suffering daily while still managing to raise children. Husbands are going to work everyday while hiding a mental illness. Teens are going to school and dealing with life undiagnosed. Their suffering ends when we shed a light on mental illness. When we stop hiding and start living, people start to understand.