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Mental Health Awareness

  • InBipolar II, Lifestyle, Mental Health Awareness, Moods

    Imperfectly Perfect

    This is the season when usually I’m way deep down in the dark hole of depression. I’m typically battling my way to the light. This season I’ve found myself in unfamiliar territory for this time of the year , hypomania.

    Hypomania has benefited me in several ways but it also caused a lot of headaches.

    First the benefits. I have enjoyed the creative flow and the confidence hypomania has given me. Also enjoy the energy spike, it’s has been a pretty good change from the constant exhaustion. I’m hitting goals that I haven’t been able to get to all year. Overall I’ve felt pretty good and energetic.

    Now the downfalls: although I’m enjoying the energy spike the energy also turns into anxiety. I get so high I end up anxious and panicked. It’s a strange feeling. The creative flow is great but the excessive thoughts and flight of ideas literally make me dizzy and a little confused. My spouse feels sorry for me at times because he witnessed how all over the place I am. He’s been a great help by sitting with me and organizing my ideas.

    In this mood I had the idea of creating more mugs for my Etsy shop and thus the picture of the mug in this post. This is only one of many ideas the mood gave me and also the confidence to follow through. The cup can be found in my Etsy shop. Anyone who purchases a cup will help me send out care-packages to those struggling with mental illness.

    https://www.etsy.com/listing/565407678/imperfectly-perfect-cappuccino-mug-we

    I started a PSA campaign this week.

    My goal is to get out 100 cards this month. I have 2 weeks to complete this task, so far I’ve only given out 5 but in my defense I only had 5 with me. I need to get organized for sure.

    Next month my goal is to design a new one and get 1000 out there. (Pretty sure that’s hypomania talking but it’s good to have a goal )

    I know this PSA isn’t anything huge but I hope it spreads the word and maybe gives someone hope. I was almost discouraged to not do this but I pushed past the criticism and went with my heart.

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  • InBipolar II, Lifestyle, Mental Health Awareness, Moods

    The Sad Season

    Sometimes I’m sad for no reason. Bipolar is a sneaky little pest. I have rapid cycling Bipolar and for the most part I do ok. For whatever reason Fall and Winter are not my months. As we make our way from fall to winter I struggle more and more as each month pass.

    Sometimes I get to the point of sadness where I feel scared ,lost and lonely. I wished I didn’t have to hide or fight it. I don’t feel suicidal but i feel super sad and heart broken. It would be so much easier if I didn’t have to fake it.

    I find the hardest part of my illness is trying to portray to the world I’m ok. When in reality I’m not. I’d like to be able to be sad and just say no I’m not ok and yes I’ve been crying. Society says if we don’t put on a good face for the world outside we are not fighting and instead we are giving into our illness.

    Let’s say I have a cold. I’m not expected to hide my symptoms maybe keep them under control by taking cough medicine or something like that but I still look sick. That’s ok. Society says “oh you have a cold, get some rest take care of yourself. ”

    If I’m depressed I’m expected to still seem bubbly and put a smile on my face.

    I write this to say that it’s exhausting and I do the fake it till I make it because I don’t want others to feel uncomfortable around me. I will do myself a favor and take time off and stay in bed. Sometimes it’s less stressful to not face the world. I call it getting rest. Letting my mind and soul sleep off the icky stuff. If it were a cold and not depression I’d do the same thing.

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  • InBipolar II, Lifestyle, Mental Health Awareness, Moods, Relationships, Therapy

    Hypersexuality

    The fall/winter season is brutal for me; it’s like clockwork ,the time changes and I go spiraling down into the dark rabbit hole of depression. I am diagnosed as rapid cycling so fortunately (sometimes unfortunately) for me I also experience manic moods in between the spirals. Both moods aren’t good to have but the manic mood can provide some relief to the darkness.

    Manic moods are often welcoming until they start to cause problems. I am grateful that I have made connections with people like myself, they have turned out to be my saving grace during the crazy times. The importance of having friends that have the same illness as you can be life saving. There are many times my bipolar friends have talked me off the ledge (figuratively of course)

    During manic moods often times hypersexuality will show up adding more chaos to the mix. (By the way Hypersexuality  in my opinion is not discuss enough.) It is real burden to carry and especially hard to work through if you have no one to talk to. The subject is even more taboo when it comes to woman, especially one in a committed relationship.

    If you are interested in understanding what Hypersexuality is here is a link to BPHope and articles in relation to Hypersexuality.

    https://www.bphope.com/symptoms/hypersexuality/

    It is uncomfortable to try to talk to someone who is “normal” and never experienced this symptom . To explain that you are struggling with (for a lack of better words) keeping it in your pants or in my case keeping your legs closed can get you some weird looks or worst loss of friendships. This is a symptom of mania and no one should  feel ashamed for feeling they way you do during this time. There should be a safe place where you can discuss this issue. Friends who are like me can relate and we talk through it. I can be held accountable by having them check on me until the mood passes and/or  I make an appointment with my non judgmental therapist. (There’s another story on that – because judgmental therapist are the worst)

    Having these types of talks with your companion can turn into nasty arguments that clearly aren’t good for a person going through hyper sexuality . I never bring this topic up in my current relationship because thankfully I have a great support group that understands. Hypersexuality doesn’t equal a terrible person it is symptom of a much bigger issue. I hope we can start to focus on this and how we can cope with this taboo symptom of mania.. It is one of the nuances of having Bipolar and I am glad hypersexuality does not show up often but when it does I at least have somewhat of a game plan.

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  • InBipolar II, Lifestyle, Mental Health Awareness

    Postcards from Pepper

     

    September is Suicide Prevention month and I have prepared a new Pepper Post Card for this month’s campaign. Starting to tomorrow on my Facebook Pepper Vintage I will be asking for my friends of Pepper to send in a photo with caption why life is beautiful. It can be your grand baby, your fur baby, yourself , a place you love to go like the beach, whatever it is that makes life beautiful for you.

    My approach is a little different. I want to take this month to celebrate life and remind us all how beautiful life can be. Anyone participating will receive the special Thank you Pepper Card, to add to this I will be selecting one person to receive a Pepper Self Care Package with Pepper Goodies and things to help you relax and practice self care.

    This subject is near and dear to my heart. I am a attempted suicide survivor 3x’s. At my worst time with my illness and my last suicide attempt I decided I would not let my illness win. I have been fighting back ever since. Recently I lost a really great friend to suicide and I know too many people who have had their lives changed forever because of suicide. While trying to cope with the loss of my friend, I decided to celebrate him. I gathered all the pictures I could of his travels and all the wonderful things I saw in his life. I wanted to focus and keep remembering how beautiful his life was even if he didn’t think so. He will be greatly missed and I am forever changed by him.

    I hope one day as a society we can get to the point where instead of judging one another we can have people feel loved and safe. If they are hurting they aren’t ashamed to say “I am not ok, I need help.”

    Let’s keep talking and loving one another. In all the darkness there is light at the end of the tunnel. Never give up. Much love, Pepper

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  • InBipolar II, Lifestyle, Mental Health Awareness, Therapy

    My Best Friend Buttons

    This is my best friend just a little tidbit about her. My husband bought her for me from a breeder in the hood ( PLEASE no lectures he meant well and we did save her from from a potential terrible situation)
    She was only 4 weeks old and I had to bottle feed her. Also there was a horrible distemper outbreak in Houston at the time and we were advised to keep her inside for a few months ,even after her vaccinations. I was so paranoid I kept her inside for 6 months of her life. (she hates other dogs as a result of living life like an inside cat) oh yeah she did have a cat friend to keep her company.
    Buttons came into my life in early 2010 a few months after I gave up a beautiful baby boy for adoption. She saved me and she is way too good for me.
    I don’t think I can ever pay her back for the amount of love and comfort she’s given me. This is my Buttons and I love her more than she will ever know.

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