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It’s Been A While… But I Am Still Here

I feel like it’s been a lifetime since I last posted anything. It’s definitely been a few months. Since September I believe. I’ve just felt like I couldn’t write anything anymore for the past few months.

The only thing I could get myself to do that involved writing was journal and even journaling was severely spaced out. I’d only journal maybe once a month when a manic episode would hit. But then when I would journal, I would sit and write for hours on end. I’d get everything out that happened since my last journal entry plus I’d write about pretty much whatever thoughts came to my mind and sometimes I’d even write for 12 hours or more straight while sitting in the same position almost the entire time.

When I do journal, it’s usually at night and since I am usually manic when I’m journaling I would just stay up all night until the late morning hours just writing in complete solitude while the rest of my household slept.

I still have the same job that I had in my last blog post. So no one has to double back to my last personal entry to find out what my job is I’ll review what I do again:

I am HR for a small company that has residential group homes for individuals with special needs such as intellectual disabilities and mental health disorders. I have never had an HR position before, it just kind of landed in my lap after I started this job because I was only supposed to be the administrative office assistant. Some days I feel like I have no idea what I am supposed to be doing and other days I feel like I semi-know what I am doing. I have a lot to learn. I started this job on August 2nd, 2021.

I’ve already had a verbal warning about how much I call out. But some days I feel like I am too mentally unstable to handle my job and just need a mental health day to get my shit together so I could be on top of my game at work. Or some of the times I have called off was because I was legit too sick to handle going in.

Like a few weeks ago I was started on a low dose of Prozac (10mg) and after taking it I would turn completely red and the area around my eyes would swell up. Then the one day after taking it I began to throw up uncontrollably for 24 hours straight and I know I wasn’t sick so I know it wasn’t the stomach bug and the only thing that changed was the Prozac. So while I was sick throwing up I called out of work because I could barely get out of bed and I had a trash can right next to my bed which I utilized a lot over that 24 hour period. Needless to say, I stopped taking the Prozac.

I was put on Prozac to try to help with my anxiety since my anxiety has been out of control pretty much since I started my job in August. I feel like my anxiety has been at an all-time high since then and just getting worse.

Every morning I wake up already filled with anxiety the moment my alarm wakes me up and reality smacks me in the face at 7:40 in the morning for work. Just knowing that I have to go to work and that I have no clue what kind of mood my boss is going to be in that day panics me. Not knowing what my job tasks will be for the day gives me anxiety because sometimes I feel like I don’t always understand what’s being asked of me or I worry that my boss is going to want me to do something that makes me feel highly uncomfortable.

An example of my boss assigning me a task to complete that makes me uncomfortable is when she told me that I had to drive (using the company vehicle) to an individual’s house to fill in. The reason that made me uncomfortable and almost sent me into a panic attack is because, even though I do have my driver’s license, I am scared to drive because of a bad car accident I was in around 2017.

I rear-ended a semi-truck in a company vehicle and the whole front end of the van was crushed in. I seriously could have died. Luckily, I only ended up with a concussion, a broken nose, and two fractured wrists. Over time, I started to become terrified of driving or even riding in a car. If I am the passenger of a car and the driver gets on the highway, that could easily send me into panic attack mode. Now, driving freaks me out and produces so much anxiety. I don’t know how to get over this fear and it’s really affecting my life.

I was honest with my boss about my mental health. I left out some of my disorders (such as my dissociative disorder) though because I didn’t want her to think I had too much wrong with me for me to be able to handle the job. I told her I was Bipolar and on a lot of meds. My boss has been understanding with certain things and has cut me a break on a few occasions because at one point she said she could empathize with me since she has first-hand experience with bipolar disorder in her personal life.

I just have so many different things that I am in charge of at work that I forget about certain things that I am supposed to be doing. Or my boss will fire out task after task and sometimes it’s so overwhelming and I’ll start working on one thing and then get another task assigned to me and I will start working on that task and forget about what I was doing before I was assigned the newest task.

I tend to lose or misplace things sometimes too because I get handed random paperwork and I’m expected to hold on to it until my boss needs it again so that her office isn’t overflowing with paperwork and I am legit starting to run out of places to store files and documents in my little office.

I had all the employee files alphabetized in my office and when my boss needed to go through the files she took them all out of order and now they are all over the place and are completely disorganized and I haven’t had the motivation to put them all back in order once again.

This is legit the most stressful job I have ever had and I have had a lot of jobs in the past. Every day I have to talk myself into going to work because my anxiety about going to work makes me want to do nothing other than curl back up in bed and hide from the world. I am intimidated by my boss pretty much.

I do have some days where work goes smoothly and I haven’t gotten in trouble for anything. But I never know what day is going to be bad and what day is going to be good so the anticipation and not knowing of what is to come for the day gives me so much anxiety which just makes me miserable. What decides a good day from a bad day is my boss’s mood on any given day. I could be hammered with work but if my boss is in a good mood, my workload won’t really bother me and my anxiety will be tolerable.

Enough about work…

I am still living with my mom, my sister, and my sister-in-law. At the end of December, we moved into the front house instead of staying in the rear part of the house. The rear part was like a mother-in-law suite and was not very spacious at all. For almost the first 6 months that I lived with them, I was sleeping on a pull-out sofa in the living room but the mattress was actually just a foam pad that didn’t have much cushioning.

I had no privacy for all that time and it was negatively impacting my mental health. I was so depressed and I tried to hide it from my family but sometimes I couldn’t hold my feelings in anymore and would have a little meltdown. But now that we moved to the front, we have so much more space and I even have my own room now! Having my own space again has improved my mental health in some ways. It feels good to have a space that’s all mine again finally.

I can finally have friends over and be able to have privacy for private conversations. I have my own bed now and am sleeping so much better. I was finally able to get all of my stuff out of the basement and I finally have access to the personal belongings I was able to bring with me when I left my ex. I am now also finally able to figure out what was left behind when I moved out of my ex’s house so I can see what needs to be replaced. I now have a space where I can get dressed in privacy without having to always go to the bathroom to get changed. There’s just so much stuff that I took for granted in the past that I can now do once again and it’s all because I finally have my own personal space.

I didn’t mean to complain about not having my own space in the old house because I was grateful to have a roof over my head after my ex kicked me out. My mom and sister didn’t have to take me in but they did.

But with my mental health, I feel like I can’t always control myself or the things that come out of my mouth. I know there were one too many times where I came off as ungrateful. But trying to always bottle up how I was feeling just led to random explosions.

I felt like I couldn’t fully express how I was feeling living with my family and I was also going through a breakup after my 9-year relationship ended which made things messy inside my head. I didn’t like crying in front of my family even though they were used to it after all these years so I would try to hold myself together until everyone went to bed. I had longed for privacy so that I could finally break down without everyone watching. I still feel like I wasn’t able to properly grieve for my 9-year relationship which still currently has me a little fucked up in the head.

It’s hard for me to tell you how I have really been feeling mentally and emotionally because most days I have no idea how I feel. It’s like I am stuck in a mixed episode where I am both depressed and manic at the same damn time and my mind can’t decide how to feel. My anxiety levels aren’t helping anything either. I feel like it’s rare for me to have a day where my anxiety isn’t bothersome.

The weekends (starting at 5pm Friday) are usually when I feel like I”m the most relaxed. At least until about 5pm Sunday evening when reality sets in that I have to go back to work the next day. By the time the weekend comes, I am usually so mentally wiped out from my work week that I don’t want to do anything but lay in bed. But sometimes during the weekends, I will get so restless because I don’t know what to do with myself yet I don’t have the motivation to actually do anything.

Now that I am finally able to blog I realize how much I have missed it. Writing has always been a major coping mechanism for me and I haven’t done much of it over the past few months. Hopefully, now that I have my own room with a desk that I can set my laptop on maybe I’ll feel like writing more often.

Since moving back in with my mom and sister last June, I have lost a total of 33 pounds. I am actually eating healthier and not getting fast food all the time. I don’t eat much fast food anymore and I have to be in a rare mood to be hungry for it. I also drink a lot more water than soda these days too.

I am now considered to be diabetic but I was able to bring my A1C down from 6.5 to 5.7. I am not even fully sure how I was able to lose weight and bring my A1C down but whatever I am doing, I must be doing something right. People have mentioned that I look like I lost weight but I couldn’t see it for myself. I hadn’t gotten on a scale for some time so I was shocked when I finally weighed myself and saw what the scale had to say.

I finally got myself to actually schedule a physical therapy eval and have had a few sessions so now I finally have an MRI scheduled for this coming Wednesday for my lower back. Per my insurance, I had to be in physical therapy for so long before they would approve the MRI. I just hope that my insurance is finally satisfied and doesn’t make me cancel the MRI and attend more PT sessions before I can go. My primary care doctor said he wrote that I have been compliant with my treatments and that I am still experiencing pain in the MRI referral.

It’s 2 am. I am surprised that I am still awake since I usually go to bed between 7:30 – 10 pm. But I was feeling hypo-manic today so that is probably why I am still awake. I can’t stay up too much longer since I have plans with a friend tomorrow afternoon but I am just not ready to go to sleep yet.

I feel like I have been doing a horrible job at staying in touch with friends the past few months. Days will sometimes go by before I realize that I haven’t heard from so-and-so in a while and that maybe I should try to reach out to them. But a lot of my friends I would talk to late at night and now working 9 to 5, I go to bed around 7:30 – 9 pm on days I have to work the following day so I don’t get to talk to certain people much anymore and I really miss some of them.

But during work hours I don’t always get to respond to messages. By the time my shift ends, I am exhausted and just come home and eat dinner. Then I’ll try to relax and wind down from work. I don’t get much time to myself after work because by the time I get home it’s 5:30 and by 7:30 I am usually ready to take my meds and go to bed.

I take my meds so early so I am not as groggy from them in the morning. My Monday through Friday schedule doesn’t leave much time to socialize and catch up with many people. Lately, I have been trying to take my meds later so that I feel like I have more time to myself after work. But I still never usually take them no later than 9pm.

When I first started this post, I did not intend for it to be this long. But then again, in the past my posts always come out long most of the time anyway. Ya’ll should be used to my long ramblings by now lol.

I guess I’ll end this post here. Thank you to those that took their time to read this post and see what’s been going on in my life. Hopefully, it won’t be another 4 months before I write again. I’m going to try to get back into blogging more regularly. I need to get back to using my main coping mechanism.

Take care and good night, everyone!

Samantha View All

Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog

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