Let people help you.

A sequence of events over the past few months put me in the hospital on Sunday night. Not because I quit taking meds. But the meds slowly stopped being as effective. Either way the outcome is the same if one ignores an increase in symptoms. A really big breakdown. I had felt signs since early October. I brushed them off. There was no way that I was having a bipolar relapse. Sometime Saturday afternoon, after a beautiful day on Mt. Baker with my closest people, I began isolating myself and turned away help from everyone. Over the next 24 hours I became increasingly intoxicated, paranoid and felt like my life needed to end.

Bipolar had full control. The ship was heading nowhere good. I was being really destructive to my partners, friends and family. I was drunk. I desperately needed help. The cops couldn’t get me to open the door. Crisis line after crisis line called me and I wouldn’t answer. Everyone who had my phone number texted and called me and I refused help. And I finally got drunk enough to let my partner take me in. When I got to the hospital I took off my shirt and tried to escape. That’s when two syringes hit my arms and I took a really long nap. I was given the option to continue staying at whatcom crisis triage as my bipolar episode was not severe enough for a longer stay. I felt that being in my home armed to the teeth with resources and people checking in was better than being with potentially triggering strangers in a facility with no doctor on site to completely reevaluate my medications.

I am out now, stable, sober and most importantly safe. With people who know me best and my therapist, I revised and updated my safety plan and made it easier for me to understand when I am in crisis next. I have multiple mental health appointments scheduled including a medication evaluation. I am on wait lists for cancelations. I might take another day off work just to attend to my mental health. I am not out of the woods yet. I am merely in between waves until my meds can be adjusted. With a new thorough easy to understand plan, I hope I can get through the wave or at least get to my doctor.

The lesson I have really learned this time is to put down my emotions for just a moment to be courageous and vulnerable. By letting people help me when they offer. I prolonged my suffering for weeks thinking that I could do everything to manage an illness that was off tracks. I also lost a partner. And a big hit to my self esteem and pride. Enough guilt to kill an elephant. And I still have hope and faith for a better day today, tomorrow, and in the futures ahead. It was a setback for me to have a bipolar relapse, it had been nearly two years since. The longest I had ever gone.

I just couldn’t let anyone in to the shame it brought upon me to have a relapse of my illness.

And I have learned that vulnerability is the antidote to shame (Brene Brown) and being vulnerable in my worst times is the only way out of them.

Are you feeling off? Have you told anyone? Are you afraid to talk about it? Don’t know how to explain it? I don’t need details and I don’t judge. Reach out if you need anything.

I love all of you. ❤️