The Individuality of BP – Trial and Error should be the bi-words of BP

My Four Truths of Bi-Polar Disorder:

  1. Bi-Polar as an illness is as individual as the people that suffer from it.
  2. Medication is essential in stabilizing our minds.
  3. Developing a strong spiritual self is essential in overcoming our mental anguish and emotional turmoil.
  4. We, as Bi-Polar sufferers, can be useful and productive members of society.

These truths are the result of my battle to overcome Bi-Polar in its various manifestations for most of my 60 years on this planet. The current name for this mental illness is Bi-Polar, but over my lifetime the name has changed a few times, the longest running being Manic Depression. The name may change but the illness does not, the illness remains the same debilitating, isolating demon that it has always been for sufferers. There may be more defined spectrums and subtypes than ever before. The new American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders promises an even more defined set of subtypes to help in the fight against BP. These are all steps in the right direction.

The first truth that BP is an illness that is as individual as the people that suffer from it, came from years of finding that sometimes what worked for some people did not work for me. This is especially true in the area of medications, which I will cover in a future blog. However sometimes by slightly modifying what others were doing I found improvement. This lead to the realization that sometimes I need to start at different place than the other person started to achieve the same results. This is a marathon not a sprint and if I need to start in a different way than you that is ok. I found this especially true in the areas of meditation and other spirit building exercises. My mind was racing too fast to be able to sit in static position and quiet my mind. I had to ease into this and teach myself active meditation first. Active meditation will be a subject of a future blog.

In accepting the first truth about the individuality of BP I was able to come to grips with many of frustrations that came along. What I was dealing with may be frustrating, but it was not because I was all the negative things I used to tell myself, it was because this illness is so individualistic that trial and error should be its bi-words.

Keep to the path, the hard one. The easy one does not go anywhere.

 

Hello world!

Welcome to 365daysofbipolar.com. This is a blog about living with Bi-Polar disorder. These messages are about hope, a hope that comes from taking  personal action to deal with our shared illness.

The core premise of this blog are my fourth truths of BI-Polar:

  1. That Bi-Polar as an illness is as individual as the people who suffer from it.
  2. That medication is essential to stabilize our minds.
  3. The development of a strong spiritual self is essential in controlling our mental anguish and emotional turmoil.
  4. That we, as BP sufferers, can become useful, productive members of society.

Action is required to re-make ourselves into happy, healthy people with the tools and attitudes to overcome our shared illness It does not happen over night nor is there a quick fix pill.

On the subject of pills,  the medications prescribed to us for our illness will not fix our living issues.  Those issues that create our inability to live in any kind of harmony with society.  The medications only allow us to reach a point of mental stability where we can,  with help of others, fix ourselves.

We can not overcome this illness alone. We may realize something is wrong with us because we cannot function in society but until we get an actual medical diagnosis we have no idea what it is or how deal with it. We have accept some help from others and follow their suggestions to accomplish anything to do with this illness. The development of a good support team is essential to overcoming BI-Polar.

I speak a lot of overcoming, in the realm of cancers they speak of remission. Remission means that the cancer is no longer affecting your life because of the treatments you took. Something you had no control over.  I speak of overcoming as different from remission because we, as individuals, must work very hard to keep our  Bi-Polar disorder from affecting our lives.

For this reason I use the metaphor of the path. Once we have received our diagnosis we are set at a crossroads of two paths.  One path looks incredibly hard. The path is uphill and covered with rocks and things we have to climb over to get anywhere. The other path looks easy and that path requires nothing of us, it allows us to continue to be the person we are. The problem with the easy path is that it is circular and always leads back to the same crossroads an the choice to take the hard path that goes somewhere.

I end each message with the same line. Keep to the path, the hard one. The easy one does not go anywhere.  As a reminder that this journey of overcoming is not easy and sometimes gets us down, but it is worth it because when we look back on the hard path we see how far we have come.

My hope for this blog is that it is interactive and helpful.  I am interested in your comments and subject ideas. I admit to being a rank amateur at blogging. I am not an amateur at overcoming our shared illness of Bi-Polar, I have suffered from  this illness for most of my sixty years on this planet and in that battle I have overcome by learning my four truths of this illness and accepting the help of others.