Monday, October 15, 2012

Life's experiences make you stronger!

Over the years life has not handed me anything on a silver platter.  Life has come with complications through every step of the way.  I have come to no longer expect life to come with ease.  Instead, I take whatever is thrown at me and keep pushing ahead.  There have been times in which I have been pushed backwards but I have never let myself stay there. The last year has come with a lot of challenges.  While pushing myself through 53 credits at school in one year’s time I also dealt with a spike in psychiatric symptoms among other major and not so major issues. I hit hypomania in October and it spiraled from there. While I never really felt fully manic, I experienced more psychosis than I have ever experienced in my life as well as some symptoms of Mania and simultaneous symptoms of depression.  While it did indeed take me time to notice what was going on, eventually I did.  I took control and went to my Psychiatrist and with medication changes I was feeling better than ever within a couple of months.  I continued fighting through school throughout everything and managed to graduate with a pretty awesome GPA. 

This experience taught me that there is nothing in life that I can’t handle.  I have learned that I can push through anything that life throws my way.  The last year has also proven to me that I CAN ask for help when I need it and that there is no shame in admitting the full scope of my symptoms. For so long I had a hard time admitting the full scope of my symptoms even to my psychiatrist out of shame and embarrassment.  However, he can’t help me fully unless I am open and honest with him and I have now realized and accepted that.  I had a year marked by excessive change, heartache and a decrease in mental health.  However I followed that with treatment and a change for the positive and came out of it a better person and with a better outlook on myself and on life. 

I’ve never in my life asked and never will ask for sympathy, just empathy.  I don’t want anyone to feel sorry for me because I have bipolar or because of my far from stable former marriage or for any of the life experiences I have had.  Every experience I have had has made me into the strong and independent woman that I am today. Equally important, every experience I have had has placed me in a position to give back to others in need.  I have gone through my entire life without giving any credit to myself for the rocky road that I traveled to get here. I always looked at it as me just doing want I had to do to get through life.  However, some friends helped me realized how much strength it has taken for me to get where I am in life. I now give myself credit for how far I have come. For the first time in my life, I truly stood proud of myself after receiving my MBA. I stood proud because I never gave up, I pushed through all that I was handed throughout that time and came out of it a better person than I was when I went into it.

So my message to everyone with a mental illness is keep that fight up! There is something better on the other side of it! Never forget how strong you are and how much strength it has taken to overcome your illness.  With the realization of that strength, take it and use it to push through anything and everything! Don’t let your past bring you down, if I had, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Remember, not everyone is going to understand what you are going through and that is perfectly alright! Lastly, be 100% honest with your psychiatrist and/or therapist! The scope of your treatment depends solely on your complete honesty! There is no shame in admitting your symptoms, they’ll never get treated if you don’t admit them!

Thanks for reading!


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