1, 2, 3 and What?!

I’ve spoken in some generalities about finding something more than just having medicines to get better.  To put my ideas and thoughts in a more linear pattern, I decided to break them down into steps.  You know, step 1, 2, 3 and what?!  Follow along with me and you’ll understand:

 

Step 1 – you really have no clue what is going on.  Your life could be in utter chaos.  At this first step, some individuals are already looking for answers.I believe that is how I was diagnosed at such a young age.  Not only did I keep prodding for information relevant to my case, I pushed until someone gave me the right diagnosis.

 

Step 2 – oops, I went too far.  This is the step where diagnosis takes place.  I accidentally pushed step 1 into step 2.  Step 2 is the diagnosis.  This is a pretty black-and-white step.  You are diagnosed with bipolar disorder, or you are not diagnosed.  Either way, life goes on.

 

Step 3 – this is the guinea pig step.  It is here that your doctor will try 1 med or several meds in a cocktail, to stabilize your illness.  I wish this step happened quickly, but that is not always the case.  I was diagnosed a couple of months before my 21st birthday and did not find the right cocktail of meds until I was almost 30 years old.  It took me around 10 years to find what I thought, was going to be my salvation.  During this step, I also began experimenting with other ways to help with my recovery.  I was proactive from the start of my diagnosis.  Since this step lasted so long, it gave me quite a bit of time to find the right protocol in treating my illness.

 

Step 4 – this is the last of the steps.  It is here, after many years of messing around with the variables, that I found an answer.  I created a protocol, in addition to medication, that has helped me feel better, happier, healthier, stronger, and a capable contributing member to society.  I’m in the middle of putting the information together, so you’ll be able to read about it later.  Hopefully sooner and not later.

 

I’d like to add that some people don’t have 4 steps.  I have some friends whose step 1 is my step 2.  They had no clue what was going on.  Granted, their lives were in chaos, but they didn’t really do anything to find out the root cause.  I merely say this to assure you that we are all different.

 

We have different biology, health, and genetic makeup.  You can take 2 people with bipolar disorder and they can present completely different.  There are diagnostic criteria for bipolar, but symptomology can vary as much as the individual.

 

Until next time, please sign up for my e-mail community.  Thanks! 😊

10 comments on “1, 2, 3 and What?!

    1. Hi Nikki! Sorry to hear that your dad wasn’t diagnosed until about age 50. How did you and the rest of the family take his diagnosis?

    1. It really is intense! I didn’t realize how long it was going to take getting these medications adjusted, when I was first diagnosed. Then poof, a decade is gone! It puts life into perspective.

  1. I love your description of the various steps you experienced. Your point about everyone being different is so key! I work with college students with disabilities, and each one has their own unique strengths and needs, regardless of diagnoses…as we all do! When we remember this, we are all so much more eqipped to genuinely help others.

    1. Hi Lori! What a wonderful field you work in. I hope you know how greatly appreciated you are. When I was in college, I worked with the disabilities department and they were a godsend. Recently, I have read how many do not believe mental illness to be a disability. Thank-you for your open mind and my points you picked up in the post!

  2. This is really useful information. A few people I know with bipolar have gone back and forth from 3 to 4. It seems that they feel good in step 4 and start feeling like they don’t need the meds anymore, then the cycle starts over. I like the idea of having a protocol in place.

    1. Hi Heather! It almost seems like a vast majority of individuals dealing with bipolar feel like they don’t need medication anymore. Then, the cycle just keeps going. You should read my new blog post specifically about medication. It’s called Medication, the Start of Your Road to Success.

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