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Forums / Staying well / This bipolar life

Topic: This bipolar life

  1. Kazzl
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    16 December 2016 in reply to SourceShield

    Hi Kaitoa, you're so lovely to ask. I'm not the best mate, I've sunk. It leaves me pretty drained. But I'll come good again. No worries.

    Love to you too.

    Kaz

    xxx

  2. SourceShield
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    16 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz.

    I feel for you.

    I get it.

    I get the 'anger' thing too...I used to be infamous for my outbursts.

    When I 'sink', it drains me too.

    Put on your fave tunes, enjoy some ice-cream, visualize your "happy"...however that looks like for you, and take all the time that you need to be at ease again.

    We're here for you.

    MuchLove&Respect

    Kaitoa&Bundy

    p.s

    Bundy The DogShaman...sends you mega-huge happy-vibes and stuff!!!.

    ✨✨✨We pray for an extra portion of peacefulness to be sent your way tonight✨✨✨

    Be well sister-soul!.

    "Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life."

    ---Berthold Auerbach

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  3. MallowPuff
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    16 December 2016 in reply to SourceShield

    Evening, just dropping in to say hi, I'm still plugging away...

    Hey Kazzle..hope your settled, and the temporary anger/down/craziness has passed. Every mood, feeling, thought, temporary, even happiness and joy... just have to work out how to get through the bad end of the spectrum, chew up time until it passes.

    I've been reading up on ACT, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy... via a book called "The Reality Slap", how to find fulfillment when life hurts.

    It's a decent read, and helps give you mechanisms to weather the storm as such. Now that my mind has slowed down and I can concentrate on something for more than a few minutes, I've found reading again :)

    So the drugs are still working, got a visit with the psychologist next week, no idea what is next.. Christmas is near, 2 weeks leave, and hopefully more time to settle back into being me.. rediscovering me I guess. I have been a different person for quite a while, 6 months? 12 months? probably longer. I thought it was me getting better, but really I was going further away from who I am.

    It's all quite strange really. But I keep taking my meds. Sometimes I think they are not enough, I get those little pangs of hypomania.. the excitement, the anxiety, the mind goes a little faster, everything speeds up a little... and the irritability kicks in. But I'm noticing it now, and oooo it's hard to not flip out :) Like tonight, long week, probably not enough sleep, and my kids were not doing anything abnormal, but they were annoying me, I was getting so angry. Every time I went to take a step it felt like they were under my feet. I kept snapping at them, my wick was so short, and I was buzzing a little. The buzz... I know it's not really that healthy now, but it's the starting end of the buzz. It's interesting to notice.

    So tonight I sucked it all up, and tried to lock up the irritability, play normal. Hard work lol.

    Ahh, but the weekend is here! my daughter's 12 b'day, at an alpaca farm. She loves the things. She's wonderfully quirky.

    Have a great weekend all, get some sunshine, fresh air, and take your meds..

  4. Kazzl
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    17 December 2016 in reply to MallowPuff

    Hi Mallow, great to see you mate.

    It's interesting how we start to notice things we would have once ignored. I know what you mean. I feel it now when there's a hypo lurking and I always know when the black dog's heading my way. The anger is the thing I can't always anticipate, and it leaves me so jangled and awash with crap in my head.

    I guess it's a good thing that we're alert to changes, but it does mean we're constantly aware and on guard almost. It's exhausting.

    Well done for getting through last night with the kids. I hope you have a great day today with the alpacas (LOL). They are beautiful creatures, and I hope your daughter has a wonderful birthday.

    Cheers mate, enjoy the weekend. Potential sunshine here after a few days of rain - just enough to make the weeds grow again. Sigh. 😄

    Love

    Kaz

    xx

  5. Guest_322
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    19 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz,

    The sinking must be very exhausting. I don't have bipolar so I can't really pretend to understand but it does seem to take a huge emotional toll on you (even if you do manage to bounce back each time).

    As for anger, I don't really feel much anger these days. That's not to say that I've never been angry but it doesn't happen too often. Sad is more my friend than anger.

    I first heard about angry outbursts in people living with bipolar when Demi Lovato (singer/actress) went public about her mental health. She has bipolar and she talked about her angry blackout where she attacked someone close to her. She was filled with remorse but at the same time, it wasn't really her, it was the bipolar.

    Kaitoa, I love that quote! Ellu, Welcome to BB's first virtual band!

    Similar to so many others here, I adore music! It has helped get me through the best and worst times. Maybe this sounds really stupid but as long as I have my tunes, I know that I'm never truly alone.

    I'm fairly open minded about music of all genres and from all eras. Today, I've been listening to the 5th Symphony, Dark Paradise and I don't Wanna Live Forever. I really enjoyed Lana Del Rey's cover of Nina Simone's Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood- I'm yet to listen to the original.

    Dottie x

  6. Kazzl
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    20 December 2016 in reply to Guest_322

    Hiya Dottie - I love Don't Let me be Misunderstood. That's one for the band!

    Thanks for the mention of Demi Lovato - that helped me. I wish they (whoever they are) would recognise anger as a bipolar symptom. Anyways, I'm pleased to report that after a jangled sort of down day yesterday, I'm back again today.

    It's a weird thing ... sometimes, often following an angry flash, I get a day or so where I just feel off colour in my head. Not really depressed, though there's mild waves of it, tired and wanting to sleep, and very jangled intrusive thoughts and old memories that pop in, stir things up, then go again. I describe it as like nausea or an upset stomach but in my head. I want to cry but can't (which is unusual for me, I'm a very good cryer), like wanting to throw up but not being able to ... I don't know if this makes any sense.

    Anyways, a good long sleep usually helps, as does watching a movie or something that engrosses and distracts. Last night I watched Die Hard LOL. First time I've seen it. Bruce Willis saves the world in a singlet. How could you not enjoy that.

    Hey Mallow my mate - how were the alpacas?

    Love to all here

    Kaz

    xx

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  7. MallowPuff
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    20 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Die Hard (the original film) one of the best Christmas movies by far :)

    Yippee Kiyay!

    Alpacas were wonderful, my 12yo had an excellent birthday. I was stressed/buzzing all day, started with 8am basketball, 2 kids games, then home and prep for party, then party, then off to see the Womens Basketball game that night. Was very stressful and a little difficult to manage :) but made it through.

    Psychiatrist appointment this morning, increasing the dose of mood stabilisers. So stressed going in, sometimes it just feels all twilight zone like, what am I doing here, how did I get here, this is a mistake yes? Summed up the courage to re-ask re the diagnosis, she said Bipolar, and that she was really worried about me for a while there (the "do you have private health insurance" questions!).

    When I asked 'what the ... do I do now, just take the meds and make the most of it?', she recommended I return to my psychologist in the new year. Otherwise it seems to be yes, take your meds, see you in a couple of months.

    Anyway, feeling all self absorbed, frazzled, but looking forward to a skate session tonight, been a while since I've had my skates on... love skating... miss it..

    Oh and the psychiatrist went through about how I need to keep an eye on my diet, pickup the exercise some more, try my best to manage the binge eating crazies... greeeeeeat.

    *sigh*.

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  8. MallowPuff
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    67 posts
    20 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Oh and I've worked out I need to find another coping mechanism other than spending money...

    Ipad for daughter, new dual boiler coffee machine for home, new xbox one for me, new Soda Stream and all the extras, another 10 xbox games (to add to the 200 I have, and never really played), new guitar ordered online from China, and many many $$ spent on bits and bobs I 'need' on ebay and aliexpress! $700 holiday down the coast over Christmas, and presents for people, everyone is going to do so well this year lol!

    I've stopped buying new runners for me though, don't run enough at the moment to deserve them. So I bought more shirts, shorts and T-Shirts instead, and books, lots of books, I love buying and collecting! plan to read/play/do them sometime in the future....

  9. Kazzl
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    20 December 2016 in reply to MallowPuff

    Ooohhh Mallow. Bipolar as, my friend! 😊 Yep, I understand totally. I wish it was the other way around ... bipolar made us reluctant to spend money. That would be something!

    Well, we do our bit for the economy I guess. A bipolar-lead recovery.

    Sounds like you all had a great day for your daughter's birthday. A very busy day though, well done for making it through. Remember to rest. Are you sleeping OK at the moment?

    As for just taking the meds and making the most of it, well, yes. BUT, if you feel unwell at any time, either right down or manic, see your doc straightaway. Sometimes we need additional or different medication for a while to get through episodes. Don't just try and struggle though. And post here any time if things don't seem right.

    So, new guitar hey? Just right for the band ...😄

    Cheers Mallow, take care mate - have you knocked off for Christmas yet?

    Kaz

  10. Guest_322
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    20 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz,

    I'm relieved that your angry state has somewhat subsided for now. I wonder why anger isn't always recognised as a bipolar symptom- that must be very frustrating.

    Your head nausea doesn't sound very pleasant at all. In some ways, I think nausea is worse than vomiting because at least- assuming the vomit stops at some point- you'll feel better after vomiting. Whereas with nausea, it's like there's no outlet. Sorry for the graphic picture that I'm painting here.

    I'm glad to hear that keeping preoccupied seems to clear up some of the head space/fog. I hope you rest well tonight!

    Oh yes, let's add Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood to our band's playlist (hope that's cool with our other bandmates) 😊

    Take care, Kaz.

    Dottie x

  11. Airies
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    20 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kazz,

    greetings from down South. I love the humour in your posts - a bipolar lead recovery lol.ive been busy a rowing machine and bench gym thingy yesterday.. Not cheap ones either .. Commercial grade stuff that I will use. Not a week goes by when I'm not buying something that I need. My wife God bless her is very understanding. Been keeping very busy which is good for me . Excercise long walks and making the most of day light saving. I'm in a good place at the moment.The stars or planets have finally aligned. This could all change overnight of course but will make the most of it when it happens. Hope Xmas and New Year are absolutely magic for you. If I could play you tune on my harmonica I would but will give it a burl. Have a good one mega hugs Len xx

  12. Kazzl
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    21 December 2016 in reply to Airies

    Hiya Len - oh that is great news! Yes, enjoy it for all it's worth.

    I'm impressed with the exercise - I gotta get me some of that. Back in the days when I used to go to the gym the rowing machine was my favourite cardio thing. I should go back there, but typically I get passionate about these things for a while then lose interest. Got to do something though, I'm getting more barrel-like by the day.

    My hubby has been busy making garden beds for me to fill up, and I've asked for vouchers for Christmas, so after that I'll be constantly in my happy place - Bunnings garden centre. Wooo hooo! 😊

    Have you got nice plans for Christmas? Mine will be quiet, with hubby and daughter. Should be nice. I hope you have a lovely time Len and Santa is good to you.

    Keep blowing that harp mate.

    Cheers

    Kaz

    xx

  13. Kazzl
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    21 December 2016 in reply to Guest_322

    Hiya Dottie - thanks hun, yes I'm much better now. Even survived Christmas shopping yesterday.

    What are you up to for Christmas? Hope it will be full of good cheer.

    You're a lovely ray of sunshine here Dottie. I'm so glad you joined us.

    Love

    Kaz

    xxx

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  14. Airies
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    21 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kazz,

    read something in the paper the other day regarding the benefits of gardening in beating depression. Breathing in the soil or words to that effect. I'm a mad gardener as well. Starting a veggie patch, just starting the beds, and a few days back purchased a flow through worm bin so it's all good for the garden. Can relate regarding loosing interest in things ... Must be a bipolar thing. The constant need for something new. I always been an excercise nut but only now I'm doing it in moderation. Just going to sister in laws for Xmas. It's going to be a warm one. About time but it will be a shock to the system. Keep your plants and yourself hydrated. Mineral water, slice of lemon or lime with fresh mint for me ,

    cheers Len xox

  15. Guest_322
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    22 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz,

    I'm glad to hear the funky mood has shifted. Survived the Xmas shopping crowd and lived to tell the tale? Well done!

    Thanks for the kind words 😊 I have a lot of Xmas parties with friends and one with my housemates (yay) plus family (not so yay). I've been youtubing cheap Xmas DIY present tutorials so wish me luck on those ha, ha.

    What is your Xmas looking like?

    Dottie x

  16. Guest_322
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    22 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz,

    I hope you have a very merry Christmas with your daughter and husband 🎄and that your Christmas stocking is filled with Bunnings garden gift vouchers 🌺🌼🌷

    I'll be seeing my friends and dealing with my family over the next 4 days so I might be a bit quiet on the forum. But I'll be back around the 27th-28th Dec. Catch ya then.

    Stay safe!

    Dottie xxx

  17. Kazzl
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    24 December 2016 in reply to Guest_322

    Awww, thank you lovely Dottie! I hope you have a splendid time hun and that Santa is good to you. Take care of you, and I look forward to catching up when we're all collapsed on the couch after Christmas.

    Cheers lovely

    Kaz

    xxx

    xxx

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  18. Guest_322
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    28 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Thank you Kaz!

    I hope Santa gifted you with as many Bunning garden gift vouchers as he could fit in your Xmas stocking 😄

    Dottie x

  19. Kazzl
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    29 December 2016 in reply to Guest_322

    Hiya Dottie - thank you. Santa did indeed bring gift cards and I spent the day in my happy place yesterday. My yard is starting to look like a garden! Woo hoo! Off to the nursery again today for more roses, lavenders, daisies and and and ...

    Hope you had a lovely time with your friends and family hun.

    Kaz

    xx

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  20. Guest_322
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    30 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Kaz,

    Thanks for thinking of me.

    Your happy place sounds perfect for you. Wow, what a gorgeous sight your garden will be to passerbys and even when you're looking out your window?!

    Happy gardening and I hope you have a good NYE too 😊

    Dottie x

  21. white knight
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    31 December 2016 in reply to Guest_322

    Hi all.

    Just wanted to drop by to congratulate Kaz in reaching 200 posts for this valuable thread.

    :)

    Tony WK

  22. Kazzl
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    31 December 2016 in reply to white knight

    Hi Tony - wow! I hadn't even noticed. Thanks mate, and happy new year to you. What are you up to?

    Happy new year to all our bipolar buddies and friends on this thread. Hope you have splendid time tonight and dance your way into 2017 (even if just in your mind).

    Love to you all

    Kaz

    xxx

  23. Kazzl
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    31 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    So, as we clear away the scraps of the year, I thought I'd leave the (possibly) last word to my hero Carrie Fisher. And yes, I'm gutted. Couldn't believe it.

    Here are two quotes from her that I love - I hope the second doesn't offend anyone. I laughed my head off.

    One of the things that baffles me (and there are quite a few) is how there can be so much lingering stigma with regards to mental illness, specifically bipolar disorder. In my opinion, living with manic depression takes a tremendous amount of balls. At times, being bipolar can be an all-consuming challenge, requiring a lot of stamina and even more courage, so if you're living with this illness and functioning at all, it's something to be proud of, not ashamed of.
    They should issue medals along with the steady stream of medication.”
    ― Carrie Fisher, Wishful Drinking

    I thought I would inaugurate a Bipolar Pride Day. You know, with floats and parades and stuff! On the floats we would get the depressives, and they wouldn’t even have to leave their beds - we’d just roll their beds out of their houses, and they could continue staring off miserably into space. And then for the manics, we’d have the manic marching band, with manics laughing and talking and shopping and f___ing and making bad judgment calls.”
    ― Carrie Fisher, Wishful Drinking

    RIP Carrie - and medals and parades for us all!

    Love

    Kaz

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  24. MallowPuff
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    31 December 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Just popping in to say a quick Happy New Year all!!!!!

    this has been one weird, terrible but wonderful year...

    hope everyone has a safe and happy night...

    bring on 2017.... please....

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  25. Kazzl
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    31 December 2016 in reply to MallowPuff

    Hiya Mallow - I'm with you there!

    Happy new year to you and yours my friend.

    Kaz

    xx

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  26. white knight
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    1 January 2017 in reply to Kazzl

    Thanks Kaz I as usual spent a quiet night with my wife and her friend here in the countryside.

    I thought long and hard about my bipolar 2017 year ahead and a few resolutions have been put in place.

    Im embarking on writing more poetry. Something I shelved some time ago.

    Ill listen to the pan flute on YouTube more often and the great Leonard Cohen. One of his songs 'sisters of mercy" I love and tower of song and I'm your man. He was s great poet. I'm in awe of him.

    I want to be more tolerant to my beautiful wife. She puts up with my moods that never disappear fully with those stabilisers.

    I want to value every breath I take. Listening to YouTube Maharaji- sunset and "the perfect instrument" helps a lot there. I bang on a lot about his teachings but they have formed a large part in my recovery.

    All the best for 2017

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  27. MallowPuff
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    10 January 2017 in reply to white knight

    Morning Len, Dottie, Kaz and Tony,

    2017 is in full swing now, back at work, kids still off school, but starting to get back into routine. A few things I'm trying to focus on to help me is sleep, routine and my eating habits :) but there is plenty of healing/fixing to be done....

    I guess now that I've settled down a bit and the medication seems to mostly be doing the trick, what do people do to support their wellness? Do you just read a lot and try to find out what works for you? My Psychiatrist seems to want to see me many months apart and is more focussed on making sure my mood stabilisers are at the right dose. But there are so many other things to consider/change/review!!

    This is me in the "I'm new here, wtf do I do now? How do I manage this thing? Bipolar seems to be different for everyone, how do I work out what triggers, issues, symptom, thoughts, feelings, etc that I need to work on to keep myself well?

    psychologists? Group Therapies? Chat forums? Yoga? Excercise? Mindfullness? Stress management? Specific books to read? More medication? Less medication? Sleep? fix a mixed up body clock? Diet? Routine? Couples counselling?

    i guess, what now?

    I have experience taking on board one/two chronic illnesses already (psoriasis and bad psoriatic arthritis), so what's another one :( humpf.....

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  28. Airies
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    11 January 2017 in reply to MallowPuff

    Hello Mallow Puff,Dottie, Kaz and Tony,

    hard to believe it's 2017. No New Years resolutions for me just grateful I made it through the most challenging year of my life.

    ive had deep and meaningful with my wife regarding getting off my meds. She reminded me that the reason why I'm well and stable at the moment is due to the right meds, counselling and ongoing theraphy. I would have to stay in the psych hospital to monitor my condition a and deep down I know I'm not ready. Anyway will see what my psych says. She's the expert and will be guided by her. Keeping busy gardening , excercising , I need those endorphins.The other day i rowed on my rower for 90 minutes , went for a long long walk with my pooch and had a walk with my wife in the morning. I over did it, struggled to sleep and it's taken me days to recover.Buying stuff on EBay, hardware shop. Not a week goes by when I'm not indulging in some retail therapy for myself. Not having the high highs or low lows at the moment but impulsive as.Survived Xmas and New year. Accepting my condition a bit more these days and my lot in life. It was a bummer last year. One of the positives was the wealth of support here. RIP Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds. Tragic to say the least.

    hope you are having a good one folks

    cheers Len

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  29. Kazzl
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    12 January 2017 in reply to MallowPuff

    Hiya Mallow. What now? Well, I'm not that much further down the track than you are - but I can tell you what I've learned so far.

    I think the key thing is acceptance, and that took me a while to get to. Acceptance of the past as well as the present. Once I was diagnosed and started learning about bipolar, I went back over so much in my life and resented that I hadn't known. But I've reached a point where I'm reconciled with it and try not to ruminate. I think that just comes with time. Keep looking forward.

    Next I think is self-awareness. Really noticing how you're feeling and whether something has influenced that. Get to know your triggers and ways to avoid or manage them.

    I found learning as much as I can helpful, but that's me. Others I know just want to be guided by their doc and 'go with the flow'. But I'm still reading everything I can lay my hands on - I'm determined to manage and live with this myself (with my doctor and drugs of course).

    One thing I have noticed though is that a lot of the reading is 'clinicalised' - ie it focuses on what happens in episodes. It describes episodes lasting from days to months, then there being months or years between episodes. And that's to be expected for clinicians who have to treat the more extreme symptoms that present in episodes.

    But a lot of it doesn't focus on the dailyness of living with bipolar. For example, the fact that our heads can feel 'out of kilter' day to day without there being a full-on episode happening. The daily battle with fatigue, memory problems, difficulty making decisions, mild depression, or mild hypomanic symptoms like impulse buying or being easily distracted. I've found 'lived experience' blogs helpful. (Google Natasha Tracey).

    So, I think one of the most useful things I've done is to accept that it is a daily situation. In doing that, I've given myself permission to 'go with it' rather than fight. If I have to cancel something I do. If I need to sleep I sleep. That's easy at the moment when I'm not working and when I am I'll need to change strategies and make the most of my home time for self-care.

    I think you're doing all the right stuff Mallow. Just be self-aware now you're back at work that you might need to approach things diffently - avoid conflict and stress as much as you can, rest as much as you can, but otherwise just live your life. Be kind to yourself - bipolar 2 is a manageable chronic illness, no more, no less in my view.

    Very best wishes mate

    Kaz

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  30. Kazzl
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    12 January 2017 in reply to Airies

    Hiya Len, good to hear from you mate. Wow, you must getting fit! Good on you. I need to get me some of that fitness thing ... but I still struggle a lot with fatigue. And I am lazy, I know that. It's not just a bipolar thing.

    Now, about these medications ... what's the reason you'd like to get off them? Are you having side effects? Or just hate being medicated? Either way I understand, it's crap feeling like we're chemically controlled. However, my view (and it is just mine for me) is that I'm chemically controlled either way. Without drugs, my brain chemistry is pretty stuffed and does bad things to me. With drugs, it's much better. Simples. That's the rational argument. But I still get the other argument (be free my wayward mind) lodging itself in my thoughts from time to time.

    How's your garden going? I am very pleased to report that my front yard of rocks, pebbles, weeds and spiky things has been transformed into a very pretty cottage garden in the making. I've kept Bunnings and local nurseries in business recently and now we just need to turf in autumn and we're done. Love it. My happy place.

    Glad to hear the acceptance is growing (take a look at what I posted to Mallow, it might be useful to you too).

    Best wishes to you mate, hope to talk soon.

    Kaz

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